Who is Lana Condor? Lana Condor stars as Lara Jean Covey, the 16-year-old protagonist of Netflix's charming rom-com To All The Boys I've Loved Before. Lara Jean lives her best life in her fantasies, which are based off the romantic novels she prefers to read. She also processes her intense emotions when she has a crush on a boy by writing them a letter about how she feels. These letters are private — she does not send them — and kept in a box on a high shelf in her closet. There are five letters in that box.
To All The Boys I've Loved Before follows the mayhem (and serious embarrassment) when those letters get accidentally sent to the boys they are addressed to. If you haven't watched the Netflix rom com To All The Boys I've Loved Before, you're really missing out. The film from director/writer Susan Johnson is based on the novel of the same name by Jenny Han. Let's take a look at everything we know about Lana and her breakout role as the half Korean, half American teenager.
1. She was born in Vietnam
Lana was born Tran Dong Lan in Can Tho, Vietnam on May 11, 1997. On October 6 of that same year, she and her non-biological brother Arthur were adopted by an American couple, Mary Carol and Bob Condor. She was baptized Lana Therese Condor after her adoption. Her dad is a two-time Pulitzer-Prize nominated journalist. She was raised in Chicago. The family also lived in Whidbey Island, Washington and New York City. Her family moved to Santa Monica when she was 15. Lana told Teen Vogue, "I was born in Vietnam and I was adopted by an Irish lady and a Hungarian man, and then I moved to America. So in a way I grew up in a mixed household, because my brother and I are Asian, and our parents are white."
2. More than an actress
Lana is not just an actress. She is also an accomplished ballet dancer and trained with the Joffrey Ballet and the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre. She was also a competitive equestrian when she was younger.
3. Her first role
Lana nabbed her first acting gig on just the third audition she went on after deciding to become an actress. She played Jubliee in 2016's X-Men: Apocalypse.
4. To All The Boys I've Loved Before was a big deal
Lana opened up to The Cut, saying that the Netflix rom-com was a really big deal for her, particularly since it had an Asian lead character. "I’ve never been given the opportunity to be the lead in a rom com — for loads of reasons but including the way I look. People in Hollywood defer to what they know, which is a white lead, particularly in romantic comedies. When I got the audition description and it said that they were specifically looking for an Asian actress, I was like, I actually have a chance at getting this?"
5. She writes (and receives) love letters
Like her character Lara Jean, Lana writes love letters. She also gets them from her boyfriend of three years, actor Anthony De La Torre. But more than that, her family writes each other letters if they are fighting as they find it to be an easier way of expressing themselves when emotional. She told Vulture, "To this day, I write love letters. I have a hard time expressing myself when I’m emotional, so my family has done this forever. We write each other letters if we’re fighting or whatever. And my dad’s a writer, but we write each other letters because we feel that it’s easier to get out what you’re truly saying if you write it down. Because sometimes, when you’re emotional, at least for me, I can’t really articulate myself when I’m emotional. No one writes each other letters anymore, but I think there’s something so special about receiving a really heartfelt letter, still."
6. Speaking of her boyfriend...
Lana says her boyfriend Anthony is her best friend. "We laugh all the time. I think that’s very important, that a friend makes you laugh, and you’re just giddy around them all the time." You may have seen Lana's boyfriend as a young Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales in 2017.
7. What's next?
Lana stars in two more movies this year, Alita: Battle Angel and Summer Night. In 2019, she is set to play Saya Kuriki in Syfy's Deadly Class.
Amy Lamare is a Los Angeles based freelance writer covering entertainment, pop culture, beauty, fashion, fitness, technology, and the intersection of technology, business, and philanthropy. She is deeply devoted to her chocolate Labrador and an avid long distance runner. You can find her on Instagram and Facebook.
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