Just a few years before landing the role of Korean diner owner Han Lee in the hit CBS sitcom “2 Broke Girls,” Matthew Moy was drifting from one odd job to another, looking for a satisfying career.
“I was a Japanese and linguistics major at first, but that didn’t really work out, so I had been working in a pet hospital and also worked for a spinal surgeon,” the Chinese-American actor tells Zap2it. “I had been studying voice-over, and thought, ‘Well, maybe I can be the next big thing in that,’ and got an agent and started getting jobs.”
Eventually, he made the transition to on-camera acting, although he admits that the prospect initially scared him. Among his first gigs was a recurring role during the last season of NBC’s long-running “Scrubs.”
“Every season of ‘Scrubs’ was probably weird, because they always felt as if it would be ending soon, but I was on the tail end of the ‘last, last, last’ season,” Moy says. “It was like everyone had senior-itis. We all had so much fun. That was one of the first things that I did, too, so I was very lucky.”
He says he’s aware that his role on his current CBS show has drawn some fire as being an Asian stereotype.
“Mostly, we’re all about jokes,” he says. “That was our first season. We really do take in what people say and try to make better stuff. Here in L.A., I know a lot of real people who have similar accents. We’re not trying to represent the entire [Asian] culture. I used to go to this diner that was owned by a Korean husband and wife, and the guy would wait tables while the wife cooked. They served like cheap American food, and he was a lot like Han.”