Ke Huy Quan is the frontrunner for best supporting actor at the Oscars, thanks to his work in “Everything, Everywhere, All at Once,” which has already earned him Golden Globes, Critics’ Choice Awards, and Screen Actors Guild Awards. The forthcoming Oscar Awards will bring to a close Quan’s three-year adventure with “Everything, Everywhere, All at Once.” The A24 multiverse drama was shot in January 2020, however its cinema debut was delayed by two years due to the COVID pandemic.
Quan recently told “The Late Late Show” that he spent the pandemic “at home trying to remain safe like everyone else.” But he was also “very apprehensive” because no other acting offers had come in since his comeback role in “Everything, Everywhere” had been delayed for so long.
“I was about to lose my health insurance,” Quan said. “So, I called my agent and I said, ‘Can you please get me anything? It doesn’t matter, I just need one job to make the minimum requirement so I can qualify for health insurance the following year.’ And I could not get one single job. Sure enough, 2021 came and went [and I] lost my health insurance.”
After losing his health insurance, Quan realized the rest of his career and livelihood rested on the strength of “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” He called a producer on the film and asked: “Can you please tell me one thing? Am I good in the movie?” When the producer questioned why Quan would ask that, the actor told him the truth: “Well, nobody wants to hire me.”
“[The producer said], ‘Ke, Just be patient. You just wait,’” Quan said. “The movie came out in March of last year and my life has changed.”
Quan’s life has truly transformed. He’s not just an Oscar contender, but he also has a new position in the Marvel Cinematic Universe thanks to “Loki” Season 2. Previously, the actor told Variety that “Crazy Rich Asians” inspired him to return to acting.
“When ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ came out and I saw my fellow Asian actors up on the screen, I wanted to be up there with them,” Quan said. “I called up an agent friend of mine, and I asked him if he wanted to represent me, and he said yes. Two weeks later, I got a call about this movie that stars Michelle Yeoh, written and directed by the Daniels [Kwan and Scheinert] and Waymond was one of the leads.”
Quan is of course referring to “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” The film is nominated for a total of 11 Academy Awards, including best picture.