The Way Awkwafina’s Rapping Career Led Her To Hollywood

Bihter Sevinc

Hollywood has witnessed several music stars trying their chance at acting in movies and TV shows. Although not all transitions have been successful, some became major, multi-talented celebrities, including Awkwafina.

When asked whether she saw any advantages from initially introducing herself as a hip-hop artist before pursuing an acting career in a 2018 conversation with Billboard, Awkwafina replied:

“Totally. Look, I’ve been making music since I was eleven years old, and was producing music on Garage Band when I was sixteen. Music is ingrained in me, but I think being an artist — being creative with the music and acting and comedy — they’re all connected by a common thread.”

She continued:

“For me, that common thread goes through everything I do. For me, I think the biggest issue is time management because I really have to decide at any given moment which one I’m going to concentrate on more.”

Comparing music and acting, the singer further said:

“In my eyes, acting is a blessing, one where I can’t really control which or how many movies I’ll be doing in the next year, but I can control music. That music comes from me; it’s what I personally put out into the universe, while the acting is something that is a blessing for when the right project comes along.”

Awkwafina lastly added:

“Time-wise, it is hard when I’m onset to carve out time to get into the recording studio, but music is something that I’ll be doing until no one wants to listen to it anymore. It’s just what I do.”

Her college major was journalism, but her dreams of performing never faded. As the actor shared rap tracks like ‘My Vag’ and ‘Yellow Ranger’ on YouTube, Nora Lum became known by her stage name, Awkwafina. With growing online fame, she appeared on MTV’s ‘Girl Code.’ She became a co-host on ‘Girl Code Live’ and took charge of the online series ‘Tawk.’

Gradually, the singer stepped into the film world with roles in ‘Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising’ and the animated movie ‘Storks.’ Her breakthrough happened with ‘Ocean’s 8,’ where she starred as Constance in an all-female main cast.

She gained further fame with ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ and ‘Jumanji: The Next Level.’ With her performance in the 2019 film ‘The Farewell,’ the actor won a Golden Globe Award. In the upcoming months of 2023, Awkwafina will appear in ‘Quiz Lady’ along with Sandra Oh and perform a voice role in ‘Migration.’

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