Ali Wong

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Ali Wong
Ali Wong smiling
Wong in 2012
Alexandra Dawn Wong[1]

(1982-04-19) April 19, 1982 (age 39)
Alma materUniversity of California, Los Angeles
  • Comedian
  • actress
  • writer
Years active2005–present
Justin Hakuta
(m. 2014)
RelativesKen Hakuta (father-in-law)
WebsiteOfficial website Edit this at Wikidata

Alexandra Dawn "Ali" Wong (born April 19, 1982)[2][3] is an American comedian, actress and writer.[4][5] She is noted for her Netflix stand-up specials Baby Cobra and Hard Knock Wife, both of which received critical acclaim. She is also known for her leading film role in the 2019 film Always Be My Maybe, which she produced and wrote with her co-star Randall Park. She was a main cast member on the ABC television show American Housewife. Previously, she appeared on Are You There, Chelsea?, Inside Amy Schumer, and Black Box. She also wrote for the first three seasons of the sitcom Fresh Off the Boat. Wong voices title character Roberta "Bertie" Songthrush, a polite songbird and aspiring baker on the critically acclaimed animated series Tuca & Bertie and new student "Ali" on the hit series Big Mouth.

Wong was included in Time's 100 Most Influential People of 2020.[6]

Early life[edit]

Wong was born in the Pacific Heights neighborhood of San Francisco, California, the youngest of four children.[2][7] Her father, Adolphus Wong,[8] was a Chinese-American anesthesiologist who worked for Kaiser Permanente for 30 years. Her mother, Tam "Tammy" Wong, immigrated in 1960 to the United States from Huế, South Vietnam and was a social worker.[2][9][10]

In 2000, Wong graduated from San Francisco University High School,[11] where she was student body class president.[12] She enrolled at UCLA, where she majored in Asian American studies and discovered her love of performing as a member of the university's LCC Theatre Company,[13] the country's largest and oldest Asian-American collegiate theater company.[14] She spent a summer working at The Lair of the Golden Bear, a UC Berkeley alumni summer family camp and, during her junior year, spent time in Hanoi, Vietnam.[2]

She graduated summa cum laude with a BA in Asian American studies in 2005.[15][16] After college, she studied in Vietnam as a Fulbright scholar.[17]


2011–2013: Career beginnings[edit]

Ali Wong, 2013

After graduating from college, 23-year-old Wong tried stand-up comedy at Brainwash Cafe. She soon moved to New York City to pursue comedy, and began to perform up to nine times a night.[18]

In 2011, Variety named her one of the "10 Comics to Watch".[4] Soon after, she appeared on The Tonight Show, John Oliver's New York Stand Up Show and Dave Attell's Comedy Underground Show. She was also cast as series regular in the NBC comedy series Are You There, Chelsea? and appeared on Chelsea Lately.[19] After that, she was in VH1's Best Week Ever and MTV's Hey Girl in 2013. Additionally, she starred in Oliver Stone's Savages, opposite Benicio Del Toro and Salma Hayek, and as Kate in the film Dealin' with Idiots.[3]

2014–present: Fresh off the Boat and Netflix[edit]

In 2014, Wong played Dr. Lina Lark in the ABC medical drama series Black Box, opposite Kelly Reilly and Vanessa Redgrave.[20][21] Since then, she has guest-starred in several episodes of Inside Amy Schumer. Wong has been a writer on Fresh Off the Boat since 2014.[22] Randall Park, who is on the main cast, had suggested Wong for the writing role.[15]

On Mother's Day 2016,[23] Netflix released a stand-up special called Baby Cobra; the special was filmed in September 2015, when Wong was seven months pregnant with her first child[24] at the Neptune Theater in Seattle.[7][18][25] According to New York Magazine, "The special's arrival on Netflix is the sort of star-making moment that unites the tastes of the unlikeliest fans."[26] On September 11, 2016, Wong spoke at, and walked the runway during New York Fashion Week for Opening Ceremony's show.[27] In October 2016, Wong began starring in the main cast of the ABC sitcom American Housewife. On May 13, 2018, Wong's second Netflix special, Hard Knock Wife, was released. It was filmed in late September 2017 at the Winter Garden Theatre in Toronto when she was seven months pregnant with her second child.[28][29]

Wong starred with Randall Park in the 2019 Netflix film Always Be My Maybe, a film directed by Nahnatchka Khan, and written by Wong, Park, and Michael Golamco. Wong voiced a titular character Bertie in the Netflix animated show Tuca & Bertie. On October 15, 2019, Wong came out with a book entitled Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets and Advice for Living Your Best Life.[30][31] She dubs it as a life guide for her two daughters to read when they're adults.[32]

Personal life[edit]

In 2010, Wong met Justin Hakuta, son of inventor and TV personality Ken Hakuta, at a wedding of mutual friends.[33] Hakuta works as the vice president of product at healthcare startup GoodRx. They married in 2014[34] and have two daughters, Mari and Nikki.[35]

Wong has been open in her standup comedy and to the media about miscarrying twins prior to getting pregnant with her first daughter. She has stated that joking about her miscarriage helped her cope.[17]


As actress[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2011 Breaking In Ana Ng 3 episodes
2012 Are You There, Chelsea? Olivia 12 episodes
2012 Savages Claire
2013 Dealin' with Idiots Katieie
2014 Black Box Dr. Lina Lark 13 episodes
2014–2015 Inside Amy Schumer Various characters 3 episodes
2015 BoJack Horseman Maddy (voice) Episode: "Escape from L.A."
2016 Animals. Dana (voice) Episode: "Rats"
2016 The Angry Birds Movie Betty Bird (voice)
2016–2021 American Housewife Doris Series regular
2017 Fresh Off the Boat Margot Episode: "The Flush"
2017 The Lego Ninjago Movie General Olivia (Voice)
2017 Father Figures Ali
2018 Ralph Breaks the Internet Felony (voice)
2018 OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes Twisty (voice) Episode: "Soda Genie"
2018 Ask the Storybots The Brain Episode: "How Do Ears Hear?"
2019–present Tuca & Bertie Bertie (voice) 17 episodes
2019 Always Be My Maybe Sasha Tran Also writer and producer
2019–present Big Mouth Ali 14 episodes
2020 Birds of Prey Ellen Yee
2020 Onward Gore (voice)
2020 Love, Victor Ms. Thomas Recurring role
2020 Phineas and Ferb the Movie: Candace Against the Universe Super Super Big Doctor (voice)
TBA Paper Girls Adult Erin Filming

As herself[edit]

Year Title Notes
2012 Chelsea Lately 9 episodes
2013 Hey Girl 5 episodes
2013 Best Week Ever 16 episodes
2016 Ali Wong: Baby Cobra Netflix comedy special
2017 The Hero Movie
2017 Bill Nye Saves The World S2E4 - Netflix
2018 Ugly Delicious S1E8 - Netflix
2018 Ali Wong: Hard Knock Wife Netflix comedy special
May 28, 2019 The Ellen Show "Ali Wong Experienced Pure Joy Kissing Daniel Dae Kim" and "Ali Wong and Twitch Play 'Taste Buds'"
Oct. 23, 2019 The Daily Show with Trevor Noah "Lessons for Her Daughters in Dear Girls and Life as a Female Comic "
Oct. 24, 2019 The Ellen Show "Ali Wong Once Bombed in Front of Eddie Murphy" and "Ali Wong on Whether She Wants Her Daughters to Be Comedians"

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^ "A closer look at the life, career of comedian Ali Wong".
  2. ^ a b c d Wong, Ali (Winter 2004). "Discoveries Terrible and Magnificent" (PDF). Asian American Studies 116. UCLA. Retrieved May 8, 2016.
  3. ^ a b "Black Box: Ali Wong. Lina Lark on ABC's "Black Box"". ABC Television (Press release). May 18, 2013. Archived from the original on February 2, 2014. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
  4. ^ a b Shady, Justin (July 26, 2011). "Ali Wong: Spitfire standup embraces dark". Variety. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
  5. ^ Molyneaux, Libby (October 3, 2013). "Ali Wong: L.A.'s Raunchiest Vietnamese-Chinese-American Standup Comic". LA Weekly. Archived from the original on March 10, 2014. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
  6. ^ "Ali Wong: The 100 Most Influential People of 2020". Time. Retrieved September 23, 2020.
  7. ^ a b Maron, Marc (May 5, 2016). "Episode 704 - Ali Wong". WTF with Marc Maron Podcast. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  8. ^ "Adolphus Wong Obituary". SF Chronicle.
  9. ^ Wong, Ali. "Baby Cobra". Netflix.
  10. ^ Saner, Emine (October 17, 2019). "'God, I was disgusting!' – Ali Wong on why women's bodies are the last taboo". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved February 16, 2020.
  11. ^ "San Francisco University High School Podcasts: IV. Ali Wong (1:02.45) Adorably Inappropriate". San Francisco University High School. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  12. ^ Tseng, Ada (June 8, 2015). "Get to Know Stand-Up Comedienne & 'Fresh Off the Boat' Writer Ali Wong". Audrey. Archived from the original on May 24, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  13. ^ "LCC Theatre Company at UCLA".
  14. ^ "Ali Wong: Q&A". LCC Theatre Company at UCLA. Retrieved May 8, 2016.
  15. ^ a b Levy, Ariel (September 26, 2016). "Ali Wong's Radical Raunch". The New Yorker (OCTOBER 3, 2016 ISSUE). Retrieved February 16, 2020.
  16. ^ Nepales, Ruben V. (June 13, 2019). "Randall Park and Ali Wong talk about their rom-com's Asian–and Filipino–pedigree". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved February 16, 2020.
  17. ^ a b Miller, Julie (April 25, 2019). "How Ali Wong Became Comedy's Queen Mom". Vanity Fair. Retrieved February 16, 2020.
  18. ^ a b Nguyen, Sahra Vang (November 25, 2015). "Off Color: Ali Wong on Nepotism, Network TV, and Becoming a New Mom". NBC News. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  19. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (August 25, 2008). "Ali Wong Joins New NBC Comedy 'Are You There Vodka' As Regular". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
  20. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (October 4, 2013). "ABC Series 'The Black Box' Adds Trio". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
  21. ^ Kondolojy, Amanda (January 17, 2014). "ABC Announces Premiere Dates for 'Black Box' & 'Dancing With the Stars' + 'Mind Games' Replaces 'Killer Women'". TV by the Numbers. Archived from the original on January 19, 2014. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
  22. ^ Collins, Scott (April 8, 2015). "'Fresh Off the Boat' writer Eddie Huang slams ABC comedy hit". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  23. ^ Fox, Jesse David (May 9, 2016). "Appreciating Ali Wong's Powerful Pregnancy Joke in Baby Cobra". Vulture. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
  24. ^ Kovan, Brianna (May 6, 2016). "Ali Wong Did a One-Hour Comedy Special While Seven Months Pregnant, DGAF". ELLE. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
  25. ^ White, Abbey (April 29, 2016). "Ali Wong's Got Bite in This First Look at Her Netflix Comedy Special, Baby Cobra". Paste. Retrieved May 9, 2016.
  26. ^ Choi, Mary (May 30, 2016). "Talking Pregnancy and Prostate Stimulation With Ali Wong". New York Magazine.
  27. ^ "Opening Ceremony's Funny, Political Show Redeemed Fashion Week". The Cut. Retrieved October 16, 2016.
  28. ^ "Ali Wong: Hard Knock Wife | Netflix Official Site". Retrieved May 13, 2018.
  29. ^ Karas, Jay (May 13, 2018), Ali Wong: Hard Knock Wife, Ali Wong, retrieved May 13, 2018
  30. ^ "Correction: Book Review-Dear Girls story". AP NEWS. October 23, 2019.
  31. ^
  32. ^ Wong, Ali (2019). Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets, and Advice for Living Your Best Life. ISBN 978-0525508830.
  33. ^ Wong, Gerrye (December 9, 2014). "On the Scene December 9 Holidaze: Happy Occasions". 丁丁網路電視 Archived from the original on August 16, 2016. Retrieved May 8, 2016.
  34. ^ Liu, Jennifer (October 14, 2019). "Why Ali Wong says getting a prenup was 'one of the greatest things that ever happened to me and my career'". CNBC. Retrieved May 9, 2021.
  35. ^ "Comedian Ali Wong on having a miscarriage: 'Some people have insensitive reactions'". Retrieved May 9, 2021.

External links[edit]