Top 10 Things You Didn't Know About Ali Wong



Top 10 Things You Didn't Know About Ali Wong

VOICE OVER: Elise Doucet WRITTEN BY: Savannah Sher
From Netflix stand-up specials to "Always Be My Maybe", we know Ali Wong is a comedy queen, but did you know these interesting facts about her?! This comedian has quickly become one of the best in the game and for this list, we're looking at all the most interesting facts about comedian, actress and writer Ali Wong, from Keanu Reeves being a huge fan, to her Asian American Studies major. Join MsMojo as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Things You Didn't Know About Ali Wong.


Top 10 Things You Didn't Know About Ali Wong

This comedian has quickly become one of the best in the game. Welcome to MsMojo and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 Things You Didn't Know About Ali Wong.

For this list, we’re looking at all the most interesting facts about comedian, actress and writer Ali Wong.

#10: Her Husband Works Her Merch Table

In her first Netflix special, “Baby Cobra”, Ali Wong spends a lot of time joking about wanting to be a housewife with a husband who supports her. In a strange twist of fate, her success as a comedian has almost made the opposite scenario come true. Now that she has two major Netflix specials and a movie she penned under her belt, her husband has actually quit his position as a VP of product at GoodRx and tours with her and their two children, sometimes even working at her merch table in order to lend a hand.

#9: She Attributes Her Success to Having a Nanny

In “Hard Knock Wife”, Wong talks about the privilege she has to have help to take care of her children, attributing her ability to “do it all”, to having a nanny. When talking about work-life balance, she acknowledges that she wouldn’t be able to pull it off without hiring help. In an interview, she told the New York Times that she finds it frustrating that more rich and famous moms don’t talk about the fact that there is a staff of people helping them out, saying, “It’s unfair to the hard-core stay-at-home moms to pretend you’re able to have an amazing body by chasing around your kids”.

#8: She’s Multi-talented

While most people are familiar with Ali Wong because of her hugely popular Netflix specials, “Baby Cobra” and “Hard Knock Wife”, she has actually worked in the industry wearing a bunch of different hats. She was a writer for several seasons of “Fresh Off The Boat”, and has made appearances on several comedic TV shows. In 2019, she has begun voicing the character Bertie on the animated show "Tuca & Bertie”, which she also executive produces. That’s not the only voice work she has done either; having lent her voice to projects like “The Angry Birds Movie”. Also in 2019, the romantic comedy that she wrote, produced, and stars in, “Always Be My Maybe”, was released on Netflix and in select theaters.

#7: She Majored in Asian American Studies

Today, it seems hard to imagine Wong doing anything but comedy, but she actually considered a career in academia before she made a name for herself in Hollywood. She went to college at UCLA, and majored in Asian-American studies there, which is where she became friends with the seven women who she remains close with today. She makes light of her past, saying to Vanity Fair, “Ethnic studies is a major where you study how to blame everything on white people; it’s not supposed to yield income.” It would be tough to say though that her studies didn’t inform her comedy.

#6: She Has Written a Book

We already talked about all of the ways that Wong has used her comedic and acting skills, but we left out one other tool she has in her belt- writing! Not writing for TV or movies, but writing for print, which she did when she penned “Dear Girls”, which will hit shelves in the fall of 2019. The book is written as a series of letters addressed to her daughters. However, she admits to Vanity Fair that, based on the content, she won’t let them read it until they’re 16, even though they’ll be allowed to watch her comedy specials at 13. In the work, she details her admittedly “crazy” youth, and gives advice to her kids about how to navigate the world.

#5: She's Open About Therapy

When she sat down for an interview with Julie Miller of Vanity Fair, she was quickly open about the fact that she and her husband, Justin Hakuta, attend couples therapy together. This may come as no surprise considering how open she is about a wide variety of traditionally “private” subjects in her comedy specials, but it’s still interesting to hear a celebrity open up about having professional help in this area. On the topic, she said, “People are worried about other people thinking something’s wrong in your relationship. And it’s like, something is wrong in every relationship. So if you’re not willing to admit that something is wrong, then something is wrong with you.”

#4: She Wears Children's Clothes

Wong’s tiny and at first glance unassuming presence is part of what makes her comedy work so well - because when she speaks, the words coming out of her mouth seem so out of step with her physical appearance. And in fact, she shared a little secret with Vanity Fair in her interview promoting “Always Be My Maybe”: she sometimes shops in the children’s section. When she was complimented by her interviewer on her jumpsuit, she was quick to brag that she got a steal from Zara Kids. “It’s better standing up,” she said, “since it’s meant for the torso of a person who’s hitting puberty and a little tight around the crotch area.”

#3: Keanu Reeves Is a Fan

While Ali Wong might not quite be a household name, she does count some famous faces among her fans. Case in point: Keanu Reeves. When it came time to cast “Always Be My Maybe”, Wong reached out to Reeves’ team to see if he’d be willing to play a role - one that was actually written specifically with him in mind. Surprisingly (to her!), he jumped at the chance to work alongside her, even requesting to meet with her in person and going on to quote her stand up specials to her. In an email to Vanity Fair, Reeves said, “To have had the opportunity to work with such a brave, talented artist and great person was a joy and inspiring”.

#2: Eddie Murphy Was Her Favorite Comedian

Many famous comedians can look back at their pasts and tell you how they’ve always been obsessed with comedy, even from a very young age. Ali Wong admits that she wasn’t a comedy “nerd” growing up, but that she did have a favorite comedian as a kid: Eddie Murphy. She and her brother both liked him so much that they’d record his most famous SNL skits to rewatch. And in fact, when you keep that in mind while watching her stand up specials, it’s easy to see the inspiration she takes from Murphy in terms of her physical mannerisms and swaggering on stage persona.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

She Does Her Own Makeup

She Named Her Daughter Mari After Marie Kondo, the Woman Behind the KonMari Method

She's Done Having Kids

#1: She Only Started Performing Stand-Up at 23

So many people who are successful in their fields have been at it since they were very young, but Ali Wong only performed her first stand up set when she was 23 years old. Despite her late start, she still remembers getting her first big laugh when she was young- around sixth grade when she was at camp, during a miming game where she hammed it up pretending to wash an elephant’s butt. Her first actual set was at Brainwash Café that she describes as “half café, half laundromat, 100 percent homeless shelter”. After that, she made a move to New York to pursue comedy further, and the rest is history!