Kelly Marie Tran Says She Still “Gets Really Emotional” When She Thinks About Rose Tico and Representation
Comicbook.com recently spoke to Star Wars: The Last Jedi star Kelly Marie Tran at the AARP Movie Awards, where The Last Jedi won the Best Movie for Grownups Award. As part of their conversation, they inevitably asked about the importance of Tran’s character, Rose Tico, for representation.
“It’s meant a lot to a lot of people that have reached out to me,” said Tran, “because it’s such a rare thing. I wish that we didn’t have to talk about it, because I wish that so many different types of people were represented equally in Hollywood, and that we wouldn’t have to address it. But it’s just true that it’s different. People aren’t equally represented, so it means a lot to me, and I get really emotional when I think about that, and when I think of what it was like to grow up not seeing anyone like you.”
Tran has been open about how meaningful this role was for her, crying with joy on the Last Jedi red carpet and posing excitedly with her action figure. She’s also keenly aware of the responsibility that this places on her personally. “That I do have representation … what does that mean? What does that require?” she said. “How do I do that right? Because I want to do it right. Is there a right way to do it? Those are things that flow through my head all the time.”
In addition to considering the impact and importance of representation, Tran is also dealing with her newfound celebrity. “I will say, watching that movie with a very large audience for the first time was a very surreal, out-of-body experience,” she said, “because … I don’t know, I’m sure it’s different for all actors, but for me I couldn’t watch the movie! It’s so weird, but what’s wonderful is that so many people are identifying with the entire film. These characters are so well loved. I’m just really happy to be part of it.”
She also spoke about her secret hobby, which she adorably documented on her Instagram, of listening to fans talk about the film without realizing who she was. “When the movie first came out, people would be talking about [it] after they went to the movie, and even if I was right there they wouldn’t notice,” she said. “It was my favorite to eavesdrop on their conversations and then say hi to them afterwards. The best!”
(via ComicBook.com; image: Disney / Lucasfilm)
Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site!
—The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—