Monsterland star Kelly-Marie Tran has opened up about the pressures of playing a groundbreaking role of representation. The actress is recently casted as Disney’s first Southeast Asian princess in its upcoming animation Raya and the Last Dragon. However, she rose to fame for portraying the rebel Rose Tico in Star Wars: The Last Jedi 2017 film. She also reprised the said role in The Rise of Skywalker in 2019.
Tran, who played a jealous/insecure girl on Hulu’s anthology thriller, said that it can be difficult to navigate internally sometimes. She says when you land a role like her latest, you feel as if you “have to be extra grateful because it will never happen again.”
In The Wrap’s roundtable discussion at the publication’s Power Women Summit, Tran shared her thoughts on the subject matter. Tran said “it should not feel so precious that there is something like this that exists in the world.”
She added, “There should just be so many. Do you know what I mean? I feel like sometimes when you are in an underrepresented group of people and you get this opportunity, you sort of have to do all of these mental Olympics, and that’s such an unfair pressure to put on yourself.”
Tran on her big opportunities: A well-deserved one
Tran went on to admit that she had a similar experience when she was making Star Wars: The Last Jedi. She confessed reminding herself that she “deserved” to be involved in the franchise because she’s good at what she does.
“I have to tell myself that every day,” she noted. “So I’m telling you right now, snaps for all of you for just existing in this world that just takes more energy to exist in when you feel like you have been other-ed.”
“[It’s] the idea that our stories are valid and we deserve to tell them in any way that we want to. We deserve to tell them repeatedly from different angles, and it shouldn’t be just this one thing that we’re so desperate to grasp on to.”
Raya and the Last Dragon is set to premiere in the US in March 2021. Watch the trailer below.
On the other hand, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and the entire Skywalker Saga are now available on Disney+.
Meanwhile, you may also catch Kelly-Marie Tran on Monsterland season 1, which is currently up for streaming on Hulu.