Brian Tee is known for playing serious villains, but in actuality, the actor is quite pleasant in person. In fact, he spared no expense in poking fun at himself at his recent panel at Awesome Con, in Washington, D.C. “Don’t let the Asian-ness fool you!” he exclaimed, when he broke down the demographics of his California neighborhood into 30-30-30. Math is not his forte, he pointed out.
Tee admitted that he didn’t apply himself in school until he decided to take an acting course for non-majors. “Easy ‘A’!” he said to an amused crowd. His expectations were unfounded, however, and the new challenges inspired him to excel and work his way to the dramatic arts program at UC Berkeley.
As you may be aware, Tee has a role as head of security in “Jurassic World,” another installment in the highly successful “Jurassic Park” franchise. He couldn’t divulge any spoilers but he promised, “There will be dinosaurs!” The film comes out on June 12th. Another upcoming project is a “Ninja Turtles” sequel, slated to wrap up shooting by July 7th.
The panel was rather insightful, with a selection of quality questions about Tee’s career. He considers his involvement in “We Were Soldiers” to be one of his most important films, due to the poignancy of the story. He also credits it as a movie that contributed to his maturity as an artist.
There seems to be a growing trend of actors, writers, and directors crossing over into other jobs (e.g. actors becoming writers or directors, and vice versa). Tee is no exception, having tried out writing in an endeavor called “Red Shift.” He reflected that “your impulse as an artist is to get your creativity out” and that you have to “build what you want to get there.” The writing experience is not new for Tee; it was a creative process to which he contributed as early as his time on Starz series “Crash.”
So it’s no surprise that Brian Tee seeks opportunities to “break the mold” and avoid the typecasting trap. He starred in romantic comedy “Wedding Palace” as the lead in 2013. More recently, he played a lawyer in television pilot “Love is a Four Letter Word.” “I don’t play a bad guy!” Tee jokes. While the NBC pilot failed to be picked up, the actor is confident that the series may be extended and then released on another platform.
In the meantime, we can look forward to seeing Tee in “Jurassic World” this summer.