James Hong facts for kids

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James Hong
James Hong 2014.jpg
James Hong in 2014
Born February 22, 1929 (1929-02-22) (age 91)
Residence Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Alma mater University of Minnesota
Occupation Actor, producer, director
Years active 1955–present
Spouse(s)
Pearl Huang
(m. 1967; div. 1973)

Susan Hong (m. 1977)
Children April Hong (born 1978)

James Hong born February 22, 1929) is a Chinese American actor, producer, and director. He has worked in numerous productions in American media since the 1950s, playing a variety of Asian roles, including Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese. He became known to audiences through starring in the crime series The New Adventures of Charlie Chan (1957–1958) and as the voice of Mr. Ping in the Kung Fu Panda franchise.

Early life

Hong was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota. His father emigrated from Hong Kong to Chicago, Illinois, where he owned a restaurant. For his early education, Hong moved to Hong Kong, before returning to the United States at the age of ten. He graduated from Minneapolis Central High School. He studied civil engineering at the University of Minnesota, but later became interested in acting. Hong was a road engineer in Los Angeles County for seven and a half years, acting during his vacations and sick days. He eventually quit engineering for good to devote himself to acting and voice work full-time.

Hong served in the United States Army at Fort McClellan and Camp Rucker with the Special Services. After finishing his training for the day, he would entertain soldiers during the Korean War; upon witnessing Hong's performing prowess, the camp general asked Hong to stay at Camp Rucker and be in charge of the camp's live shows rather than deploy overseas.

Career

Hong has played over 500 television and film roles. His career in show business began in the 1950s when he redubbed soundtracks of several Asian films. He dubbed the voices of characters Ogata (Akira Takarada) and Dr. Serizawa (Akihiko Hirata) in the 1956 Godzilla, King of the Monsters!.

Personal life

Hong lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife Susan (née Tong), whom he married in 1977. They have a single daughter, April.

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