Within the second season of Apple TV+’s The Morning Present, the forged welcomes a brand new character: Stella Bak (Greta Lee), a younger, competent Korean American lady who has “variety rent” written throughout her. She is available in scorching: Stella’s not in an entry-level place, she’s the brand new head of reports, taking Cory’s (Billy Crudup) previous job now that he’s been promoted.
The Morning Present’s second season goals to sort out hot-button subjects like sexual harassment within the office and “cancel tradition,” which particularly occupy the minds of the leads Mitch (Steve Carell) and Alex (Jennifer Aniston). Bradley (Reese Witherspoon) might be additionally , however this season her story is wrapped up in an sudden romance with one other TV journalist, Laura (Julianna Margulies).
In a present dominated by white characters with large personalities, Stella has to carry her personal, delivering biting recommendation and funky takedowns that belie her obvious youth and inexperience. Stella, just like the repeatedly sidelined anchor Daniel (Desean Terry), affords The Morning Present a strategy to deal with race within the office—generally overtly, and generally completely in the best way they’re spoken to throughout an in any other case unusual assembly.
I spoke to Lee about being the fictional tv community’s token Asian—and the way, because the season’s timeline begins to catch as much as the coronavirus pandemic, her character is used to depict anti–Asian American hate.
Vainness Honest: To be trustworthy, I ought to begin by saying I actually associated to your character. You’re a brand new worker at this large firm stuffed with white individuals with actually large, domineering personalities. You’re this younger worker, a newcomer, and everybody else on the firm is aware of one another. You’ve been introduced in as a result of this group wants an expert hand to maintain issues organized. And but everytime you stroll right into a room, it looks like nobody’s joyful you’re there. All people is imply to you. Virtually each character you encounter talks about your look not directly. I felt such as you have been dealing with a firing squad.
Greta Lee: Properly, after all I wished to play this character in a dynamic approach on tv.
As a result of having lived in New York, and simply by watching my friends, individuals such as you, Sonia, who’re navigating this world, and this second and having alternatives — a few of them — to step up and implement actual, precise efficacious change at their office surroundings, after which seeing: Properly, then what occurs? I simply thought that was such an thrilling place to strategy a personality and — as a fan of the present, what an incredible addition to this already established world.
It was so vital to me to point out an individual of shade, a feminine, making an attempt to function successfully inside an enormous white establishment. Like, what’s that? What does that appear like? There are such a lot of various things to barter—infinite issues which are actually uncomfortable and arduous, and questions which I don’t know the reply to. The present doesn’t both, and I believe that’s nice, as a result of the world doesn’t know.
Once you have been going into scenes and somebody was going to touch upon how younger and inexperienced you have been, or one thing like that, was that one thing that you simply felt such as you wanted to do any prep for?
Yeah. I went to a dermatologist. I laid on the strain to my physician, and let her know: Jennifer Aniston goes to touch upon how good my pores and skin is.
In my private life as a 30-something Asian American navigating my very own trajectory, after all that’s one thing that I’ve skilled firsthand. So usually after I go to work, there’s a way of like: Who are you? And that awkward second once they notice.
To their credit score, usually after I’m assembly a coworker for the primary time it’s 4:30 within the morning, it’s darkish outdoors, I’m carrying childlike pajamas. They really suppose for a minute I’m like 22 years previous. The horror of the day once they notice I’m nearer to 40!
I used to be so joyful to have that carried out into the present with Jennifer Aniston, certainly one of my heroes, and to have that play out in a true-life approach—I imply, that’s the factor that I reside and die for on this enterprise.
https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2021/10/greta-lee-morning-show-jennifer-aniston | Greta Lee on ‘The Morning Present’ and Working With Her “Hero” Jennifer Aniston