Heroic on and off the camera

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Gemma Chan fights for justice not only in the cinema. The actress also campaigns for minorities off the screen.

Hollywood star Gemma Chan (37) may not have been aware of the way in which she would one day work for law and order when she began her law studies around 20 years ago. Because instead of a career as a lawyer, she found her calling as a socially committed actress and also landed not just one, but two roles in the coveted Marvel universe. The 37-year-old uses her increasing awareness to draw attention to socio-political issues.

Because apart from her acting career, Chan also finds the time to stand up for minorities. In order to actively participate in the turnaround of the “Time’s Up” movement, she founded the Justice and Equality Fund on the one hand and her own production company on the other. She advocates feminism and against discrimination in both ways. And that with a passion that earned her the title “Force for Change” from the British “Vogue” and recently made her the brand ambassador of L’Oréal Paris: “She is committed to with natural female strength its goals and is a source of inspiration for young women to change and develop “, so the reasoning of Global Brand President Delphine Viguier-Hovasse.

The 37-year-old complements a high-ranking list of various L’Oréal Paris ambassadors, including Viola Davis (55), Celine Dion (52), Eva Longoria (45) and Elle Fanning (22).

From the catwalk to Hollywood

At the beginning of her career, Chan was often the only non-white person on the set. That’s why she experienced firsthand how important a cultural change is. Chan has Chinese parents, but was born in London on November 29, 1982. It was there too, at the Drama Center London, where she began her acting training after completing her law degree. However, it initially caused a stir in a different way. As a candidate for the British counterpart to the US show “Project Runway”, she sniffed her first TV fame as a young model and reached the finals of “Project Catwalk”.

In the miniseries “When Evil Calls” she finally made her debut as a television actress in 2006 after previously working in the theater. Three years later, the premiere on the big screen – in the low-budget thriller “Exam” by director Stuart Hazeldine. After various smaller roles, for example in the British cult series “Doctor Who” and “Sherlock” with Benedict Cumberbatch (44), her Hollywood star rose in 2014. In “Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit” she worked on the side of title character Chris Pine (40), Kevin Costner (65), Keira Knightley (35) and Kenneth Branagh (59).

In the following years she appeared in several successful US-British co-productions, such as the “Harry Potter” offshoot “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” or the series “Humans”. In the latter, she starred for over three seasons in the lead role of Anita, for whom she was able to garner critical praise around the globe. However, she celebrated her final breakthrough in the dream factory with the romantic comedy “Crazy Rich” (2018), which was so successful that, according to reports, two sequels are already being planned. And she was responsible for the also highly acclaimed anthology series “I Am …” (2019) both as an actress and as an author.

She depends on the “Avengers”

By the way, a very special feat that neither Robert Downey Jr. (55), Chris Evans (39) or Chris Hemsworth (37) succeeded in doing was achieved by Chan: In contrast to the male “Avenger” stars, she landed two roles in the Marvel Universe. In “Captain Marvel” in 2019 she was still seen as a blue-skinned Starforce member Minn-Erva at the side of leading actress Brie Larson (31). In the upcoming Marvel blockbuster “The Eternals”, which is already in post-production and should come to the cinema in November 2021, she mimes the superman Sersi. Together with Angelina Jolie (45), Salma Hayek (54) and the “Game of Thrones” stars Richard Madden (34) and Kit Harington (33), she will ensure justice far away from the earth.


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