Before she became a bonafide Hollywood movie star, Nora Lum, known by her stage name Awkwafina, was just a YouTube rapper in 2013 living in Flushing. Now, she’s returning to her roots for a new Comedy Central show based on her life in Queens.
“Awkwafina is Nora From Queens” is a half-hour scripted narrative starring Lum — who is the writer and creator of the highly anticipated series — as a 20-something growing up in Flushing, striving for a larger than life existence while living with her dad played by “Law & Order: SVU” icon BD Wong, and her foul-mouthed grandmother, played by Lori Tan Chinn of “Orange is the New Black,” and cousin played by “Saturday Night Live” cast member Bowen Yang.
“I’ve been watching Comedy Central since I was old enough to hold a remote, and so many of their shows have defined who I am today,” Lum said. “I am so honored to be given their platform to tell the story of an Asian-American girl against the backdrop of the city I was raised.”
Lum has starred in the films “Ocean’s 8″ and “Crazy Rich Asians” (2018), and won Best Actress for her work in “The Farewell” at The Gotham Awards. She has also released two albums, “Yellow Ranger” (2014) and “In Fina We Trust” (2018). Additionally, Lum also ventured into comedy and hosting, making television appearances in “Girl Code,” “Future Man” and “Saturday Night Live.”
Sarah Babineau and Jonas Larsen, executive vice presidents and co-heads of Talent and Development for Comedy Central, said, they’re “happy to be used as a pawn in Awkwafina’s elaborate, EGOT endgame.”
“This is a special project. Inspired by Awkwafina’s formative years in Queens, the show is both a personal look into one of comedy’s brightest stars and also a relatable, funny profile of a young huster’s struggle,” Larsen and Babineau said.
The 10-episode series,”Awkwafina is Nora From Queens,“ is scheduled to premiere on Jan. 22, 2020, at 10:30 p.m.