With Hollywood so full of young white faces, Brigid Molloy introduces us to a true talent who is changing the game.
Lana Condor’s breakthrough was definitely ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before,’ a sweet romantic comedy released on Netflix this past summer. Condor is convincing as Lara Jean, an introverted, bookish teen girl whose life is turned upside down when she discovers, to her dismay, that her closely guarded love letters have been secretly sent out to the five boys she’s loved. In her first leading role, Condor successfully sells herself as a potential new star. She embodies the various characteristics of Lara Jean excellently, as she portrays her as an unassuming and shy romantic who is nevertheless sharp and quietly confident. Condor’s comic timing is excellent, but she brings emotional heft to the moments of the film that are more heartfelt and serious.
“In her first leading role, Condor successfully sells herself as a potential new star”
Prior to this, Condor was best known for her significant, if small, role of Jubilee in X-Men: Apocalypse. Her next project is the upcoming action TV series Deadly Class. It is promising that she is taking on roles in various genres, such as action and comedy. She is giving herself prime opportunity to demonstrate the flexibility and range of her talent. I am hopeful that Condor will become a big star who will open a theatrical release sometime in the future but there is worry that she is in danger of not receiving the recognition she deserves. In the eyes of the overwhelmingly white Hollywood establishment, as Condor is an Asian-American, she does not fit the mould of the typical (white) leading lady.
“It is disheartening that Noah Centineo’s performance has received noticeably more attention.’’
It is disheartening that Noah Centineo’s performance in ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’ has received noticeably more attention. While his talent is undeniable and the type of hysteria surrounding Centineo is very commonly directed towards young, attractive, white male actors like him, Condor’s contribution to the film should be equally recognised. If Condor becomes a huge star, her success will be of great cultural significance. Currently, the number of major Asian actors in Hollywood could be counted on two hands. What Condor represents is important, but she has the talent to back it up. I am hopeful that she will be making big waves in Hollywood soon.