They start by casting surprisingly long shadows on the edges of our consciousness. Before you know it, their names are on everyone's tongue. Some heat up the big screen with their sex appeal. Some catch our eyes with pleasing faces and piquant voices. Some open American ears to "chinked out" music. Some aren't people at all but appealing places that bring together Asian American crowds with good energy. Together they make up Asian America's new hot gold standard.
In an industry dominated by blonde and blue, these young Asian Americans are putting a whole new cast on box office gold. Sung Kang has appeared in three movies this summer alone, including the big budget blockbuster Tokyo Drift. Daniel Dae Kim's character Jin, on ABC's Lost, has opened American eyes to a whole new brand of "sexy." Michelle Krusiec and Lynn Chen as lesbian lovers adds a new dimension to Asian American love. And as the vocal force animating the Disney cartoon Jake Long: American Dragon, Dante Basco shows that hip hop culture isn't limited to gangsta rappers and media bad boys.
Read profiles off the sexiest Asian American screen hotties.
For the most part we've been cheering imports from Asia, but a new generation of homegrown talent will join the next wave of America's Asian sports stars. Most have impressive intellectual as well as athletic credentials. Jeremy Lin led his high school team to the State basketball championship and got into Harvard on his merits as a student. Vania King deferred a Stanford scholarship to turn pro. Within two months she won her first WTA tennnis tournament. Timmy Chang dazzled fans with his masterful passing as Hawaii's quarterback after racking up straight A's at prestigious St. Louis High.
Read profiles of the most exciting young Asian American athletes.
A wave of hot new Asian American designers make up a talent typhoon crashing the U.S. East Coast fashion scene. With their bold lines, wide sashes and clean silhouettes, the likes of Richard Chai, Thakoon Panichgul, Chloe Dao and Sue Wong are moving fashion away from trendy European sensibilites born in London, Milan and Paris, back toward the refined elegance of classic styling.
Read profiles of the hottest Asian American designers!
It takes real charisma to keep twitchy fingers off the remote until that final annoying commercial. These prime time hotties do more than that — they dispel stereotypes with only their good looks and beguiling enunciations. News anchors like Veronica De La Cruz turn hourly updates into must-see TV while sports commentators like Rob Fukuzaki become the best buddy of every sports junkie.
Read profiles of the most watchable Asian American TV personalities!
There's more to a pop star than a sleek body, cute face and catchy vocals. Whether their instrument of choice in a mandolin, a violin or an R&B voice these musicians have reached the kind of success most only dream about. And they have done it while redefining mainstream music, proving that the Britney-formula isn't the only way to make bank. But the real question is, how long can a pop star last?
Read profiles of the hottest Asian American pop stars!
For those tired of the same latte-sandwich routine at Starbucks, try a place with a little more Asian flavor. If variety is the spice of life, good snacks and yummy drinks can turn any day into a party. Whether it's rose-flavored bubble tea or something more substantial like dim sum, beef noodles, burgers and or extra-spicy popcorn chicken, these cafes have it going on. They may become your new favorite hangouts.
Check out cafes with the best Asian American vibes!