Keiko Agena, star of ’13 Reasons Why,’ is a staunch supporter of Asian culture in Hollywood.
Christine Keiko Agena is best known now as Mrs. Bradley from 13 Reasons Why.
However, fans of the hit TV show Gilmore Girls may recall Agena as Lane Kim.
Rory Gilmore, Alexis Bledel’s rock-and-roll closest buddy, was Lane.
She and Emily Kuroda, who played Lane’s mother, Mrs. Kim, were mistakenly cast as Korean Americans instead of Japanese Americans.
They played an important part in allowing young Asian American women to see themselves on TV.
She recently returned to her role in A Conversation of Culture: AAPI for a panel discussion. The actress admits to having changed her mind about the character, which was one of the few Asian characters on television at the time.
However, the actress notes that because of their Japanese ancestry, she and Kuroda were reflecting an experience that wasn’t their own. If the show were done now, Agena believes the filmmakers would have cast Korean Americans if the characters were to remain Korean Americans.
The actress also discussed how her perspective on projects and parts has shifted as a result of her sense of responsibility for filling the gap in Asian American representation. In today’s setting, she believes that rich and unique people, as well as a full family of Asian ancestry, are essential for audiences.
Agena’s Professional and Personal Life
Agena was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, to a Japanese father and an American mother. She wanted to be an actress since she was a child, and she appeared in a few programs before breaking out in Gilmore Girls.
The actress went on to play a variety of parts in the years after the hugely successful drama. She appeared in Transformers: Dark of the Moon, a Scandal episode as Britta Kagen, and a guest appearance on Shameless as Brittany Sturgess.
She was nominated for three Teen Choice Awards and won a Young Artist Award for Best Supporting Young Actress in a TV Drama Series in 2002 for her role in Gilmore Girls. On December 19, 2005, while flying over Las Vegas, the actress married her husband Shin Kawasaki.
Agena has been in the profession for decades and has a net worth of $300,000, according to Celebrity Networth.
Season 2 of Prodigal Son, which premiered in May, features Agena.