This is Ali Wong. You’ve probably seen her Netflix comedy specials “Baby Cobra” and “Hard Knock Wife.” (We have. Multiple times.)
This is Randall Park. You’ve seen him in “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” “Aquaman,” “Veep” and of course, “Fresh Off the Boat,” where he plays dad-of-three Louis Huang.
Ali and Randall go way back and they finally did something they’ve been wanting to do for a while now. They wrote, produced and starred in their own movie.
The result is “Always Be My Maybe,” a delightful rom-com that will make you laugh and steal your heart. In it, Ali and Randall play Sasha, a celebrity chef, and Marcus, a happily complacent musician. The two are estranged childhood friends who are reunited years later, when Sasha opens a restaurant in their hometown of San Francisco.
Here’s the trailer.
On May 22, “Always Be My Maybe” had its world premiere at the Regent Village Theater in Westwood, California. The choice of theater was symbolic—it’s just a 12-minute walk from UCLA where Randall and Ali’s friendship first began.
On the yellow carpet
Jaime Sato (Shredder in the 1990 “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” movie) plays Harry Kim, the father of Randall’s character Marcus in the film.”Working on the movie was a ball. It was a ball because they’re so delightful. They are delightful as people and they’re so creative and talented,” said James about Ali and Randall.
Charlyne Yi (“Paper Heart,” “Knocked Up”) plays Ginger, the drummer of Marcus’ band Hello Peril. “I haven’t seen the movie yet,” she said. “The trailer looks really good.”
Rapper Lyrics Born, another Hello Peril band member. Is Hello Peril going to become a real band? We asked him. He said, “I hope so. We talked about it. We want to do more. Hello Peril. We need more Hello Peril.”
Ashley Liao plays a younger version of Sasha, Ali Wong’s character. To prepare for the role, she said she watched Ali’s comedy specials numerous times.
We are obsessed with Vivian Bang (“White Rabbit,” “Yes Man”) because she was absolutely perfect as Jenny, the girlfriend of Marcus. She told us, “When I read the script, I fell in love with Jenny right away. When I read it, it was like I knew exactly who she was. She’s three of my friends combined in one. I really had to struggle to get the part. I had to fight for it.”
The hilarious comic Michelle Buteau (“Broad City,” “Someone Great,” “Isn’t It Romantic”) plays Veronica, Sasha’s best friend. She and Ali, who met in the stand-up circuit, have known each other for 15 years. “To be around boss-ass women who are kicking ass and men who are facilitating that and also an Asian crew and an Asian cast, it felt like I was on a rainbow every damn day. When people set you up for success, you want to meet them up there too. That’s what this was,” she said.
Yes, Keanu Reeves is in the movie too. Let’s just say that you’re really going to enjoy his role.
Harry Shum Jr. and Shelby Rabara were at the premiere too. Shelby is headed to the Philippines later this year, she said.
“Fresh Off the Boat” boys Hudson Yang and Ian Chen were there to support their TV dad Randall as well. “It’s always awesome to see him on TV, he’s so talented. Seeing him starring in something that he’s passionate about and that he created himself is amazing,” said Hudson.
Ian said, “And I think it’s great, you know, because it’s Ali Wong and Randall Park. They’re comedic geniuses.” We totally agree.
“Always Be My Maybe” will begin streaming on Netflix on May 31.