The couple’s relationship dates back to when Kwan was a child actor.
LOS ANGELES — One of the most emotional moments of Sunday night Academy Awards was undoubtedly Ke Hui Quan’s speech as he won his first Oscar.
“Mom, I just won an Oscar!” he said, adding that he started in a refugee camp and ended up in Hollywood. “They say such stories only happen in the movies. I can’t believe this is happening to me. It’s the American dream.”
Quan, 51, has had anything but a smooth journey to the Academy Awards. After his family emigrated to California from Vietnam, he starred as a child actor in two of the most beloved films of the 1980s, as Short Round in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and Data in The Goonies.
But after a small number of television roles in the 1990s, the work for Quan stopped, with few roles available for Asian-American actors. Quan went to film school and began working behind the camera as a stunt coordinator and then an assistant director.
“For a long time, I thought I was at peace with it, but there was something missing, and I really didn’t know what it was until Crazy Rich Asians came along,” Quan said told GQ last year. “I saw my fellow Asian actors on screen and I had serious FOMO (fear of missing out) because I wanted to be there with them.”
Quan’s return to the big screen was a triumph, winning the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his role in the seven-award-winning sci-fi hit, Everything at once.
Several emotional moments took Quan back to his early days in Hollywood. First, he thanked his “goonie brother for life” Jeff Cohen, the child star-turned-lawyer who put together Quan’s contract for Everything Everywhere.
Another reunion took place when “Indiana Jones” star Harrison Ford presented the Oscar for Best Picture, which, as predicted, went to “Everywhere Everywhere.”
It wasn’t the only moment reminiscent of Quan’s beginnings as a child actor: the actor had an emotional encounter with Harrison Ford, who Awarded the Academy Award for Best Picture to the film “Everywhere Everywhere”.
The former stars embraced, Quan kissed Ford on the cheek and was literally jumping up and down with excitement.
Quan and Ford already met last year at the Disney D23 Expo with Quan photo sharing the two hug backstage. Later, he told about the meeting in an Associated Press interview: “I remember that day very well. 38 years have passed… At that moment I felt so comfortable. I couldn’t resist and hugged him – this man whom I love very much.”
Quan said fans around the world reacted emotionally to the photos, telling him they brought tears to their eyes.
“I was touched when I hugged him,” he said. “And to see him smile the way he used to smile! It was one of those special moments in life that don’t come around very often. I will remember this as long as I live.”
Quan said he has long been recognized as the “child” of two children’s blockbusters, but he always wanted to be known for what he did as an adult. Now this long-forgotten wish has come true.
“When I go out, people say, ‘Wow, you’re Waymond from Everything, Everywhere and At Once,'” he said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.