A-pop! is a monthly column of all things Asian in popular culture
By Ninette Cheng
Northwest Asian Weekly
Happy new year to you and to our favorite Asian American celebrities! Some of our favorites had a pretty rough ending to the year, while others had reasons to celebrate. Here’s what went down last month: Tiger Woods — need I say more? Jon Gosselin is detached from Kate once and for all, Jackie Chan’s “Karate Kid” trailer is released, and Jay Sean makes music history.
Tiger Woods: You had it all, and now you have nothing
So, in case anyone hasn’t heard about Tiger Woods yet, here’s a quick summary.
Over Thanksgiving weekend, the police received a call that Woods had crashed his car outside his house. The speculation is that the half Asian golfer and his wife, Elin Nordegren fought after she found out that he was cheating on her. Nordegren supposedly hit Woods with a golf club, and he tried to leave the house. Instead, he totaled his car.
After that, the floodgates opened. Alleged mistresses include socialite Rachel Uchitel, cocktail waitress Jaimee Grubbs, Las Vegas model Jamie Jungers, and about a half dozen more women. The indiscretions ranged from short affairs to ones that stretched over Woods’ marriage, overlapping the births of his children. Since the scandal has been unearthed, Woods has not been seen in public and has announced an indefinite break from professional golf. “I need to focus my attention on being a better husband, father, and person,” he said in a public statement.
Well, it might be a little too late for that as the rumor mill is churning that Nordegren has already decided that she wants a divorce. Elin, take the kids and run. You deserve better.
Jon Gosselin is officially a free man … and a sued man
Woods is not the only one in divorce court. On Dec. 18, Jon Gosselin and Kate Gosselin finalized their divorce. Kate will receive primary custody of the children and the house. Neither will receive spousal support, said the New York Daily News. Good riddance, I say. They are both better off without one another.
While this was one of Jon Gosselin’s few trips to court this month, it’s not because he was without a lawsuit to his name. TLC has sued Gosselin for breach of contract for making appearances on television without the network’s permission. Representatives from the network have also called his behavior embarrassing. So far, TLC has won its primary injunction. Gosselin did not bother showing up to court on Dec. 3.
Good job, Jon.
Jackie Chan is … Mr. Miyagi!
I reported earlier that Jackie Chan would be starring in a remake of the “Karate Kid” with Jaden Smith (actor Will Smith’s son). Over the holidays, the film’s first trailer was released and the buzz is big. The new film will be focused on Smith’s character moving to China. Entertainment Weekly disagrees with me, but the film looks like it could be fun and include some great cinematography.
Jay Sean paves the way for future Asian musical artists
“Baby, are you down, down, down, down, down…”
Sound familiar? Jay Sean’s song “Down” has been all over the radio, television, and Internet!
Last year, the Indian-born singer was a well-known artist in his native UK, Asia, and a number of European countries. This year, his U.S. debut marks the first solo Asian artist from abroad to ever have a number one hit in the U.S.
Sean is often credited as a pioneer in the Bhangra-R&B genre and for bringing light to the issue of Southeast Asian diaspora.
Keep up the good work!
A couple of nominations and acknowledgements
The super-cute Freida Pinto has been named one of the top 10 best dressed by Vogue magazine.
“Glee” has been nominated for the Golden Globes for best TV comedy/musical (and a number of acting awards). The show also won the award for best TV comedy/musical at the Satellite Awards in December. “Glee” features two supporting Asian actors, Jenna Ushkowitz and Harry Shum Jr. Shum, or the “Other Asian” as his character is known, finally spoke a line in the fall finale! It was exciting. ♦
See you next month for new updates!
Ninette Cheng can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.