Ian Alexander (actor)
Early and personal life
Alexander was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, to a white father and a mother of Vietnamese descent who migrated to the United States from Vietnam. Due to their father's work with the Department of Defense, their family often moved and has lived in places such as Hawaii, Japan and Washington, DC. During elementary school, they would participate in community theater and chorus. He received viral attention online through his photo response to a transphobic incident perpetrated by four UCLA college students.
Though he was raised in a Mormon family, he is not a participating member. He came out as transgender in 2014; his pronouns are he/him and they/them, and they are non-binary and pansexual.
Alexander's debut acting role was on Netflix's The OA, where he plays Buck Vu. Buck, like Alexander, is also a transgender youth and was partially based on Alexander's real experiences. He was cast from an open casting call online that spread through Tumblr. Later he was cast in the 2018 feature film Every Day, based on the book by David Levithan, playing Vic, a trans teen whom the spirit "A" inhabits for a day. In October 2017, Naughty Dog announced Alexander had joined the cast for The Last of Us Part II, the sequel to their popular video game. He played Lev, a transgender character in the game.
In June 2019, to mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, sparking the start of the modern LGBTQ rights movement, Queerty named him one of their Pride50: "trailblazing individuals who actively ensure society remains moving towards equality, acceptance and dignity for all queer people". Similarly, Alexander was one of the cover stars for them.'s 2019 Pride issue, "spotlighting three rising queer artists whose work and lives are breaking new ground for LGBTQ+ visibility". In March 2020, it was announced Alexander will star in the independent film Daughter.
|2016–2019||The OA||Buck Vu||TV series; main cast|
|2020||The Last of Us Part II||Lev||Video game; featured voice and motion capture role|
|2020–present||Star Trek: Discovery||Gray Tal||TV series; recurring|||
- Azzopardi, Chris (February 15, 2018). "16-Year-Old Trans Actor Ian Alexander Is Bringing Queer Power to the Big Screen". Into. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
- Ramos, Dino-Ray (April 2, 2019). "The OA's Ian Alexander Is The Future Of Trans Visibility In Hollywood". Deadline. Retrieved April 2, 2019.
- "Q & A with The OA's Ian Alexander". Angry Asian Man. December 21, 2016. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
- Karlan, Sarah (May 19, 2016). "People Can't Handle This Trans Teen's Response To This Viral Anti-Trans Photo". BuzzFeed. Retrieved November 6, 2018.
- Alexander, Ian (January 27, 2017). "I'm Ian Alexander/Buck! AMA : TheOA". Reddit. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
- Weik, Taylor (February 2, 2017). "Meet The OA actor who wants to help pave the way for trans representation". NBC News. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
- Ennis, Dawn (November 5, 2020). "Transgender Actor Ian Alexander, The Newest Star Trek Star, Didn't Get The Part He Auditioned For". Forbes. Retrieved November 14, 2020.
- Walker, Harron (December 22, 2016). "The OA's Ian Alexander on His Big Acting Debut and Trans Representation". Vulture. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
- "Casting Call: Netflix series seeks Asian Transgender Teen". Angry Asian Man. August 25, 2015. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
- Houlihan, Ryan (December 28, 2016). "How Netflix's Newest Teen Actor Landed His Job on Tumblr". Teen Vogue. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
- Dresden, Hilton (February 15, 2018). "Watch This Exclusive Clip From Every Day Featuring Trans Actor Ian Alexander". Out. Retrieved October 31, 2018.
- Naughty Dog [@Naughty_Dog] (October 30, 2017). "Ian Alexander is Lev. #TheLastofUsPartII" (Tweet). Retrieved October 31, 2018 – via Twitter.
- Rosenblatt, Kalhan (July 8, 2020). "The Last of Us Part II brings queer stories to a pandemic-ravaged dystopia". NBC News. Retrieved July 21, 2020.
- Reddish, David (May 24, 2019). "The OA's Ian Alexander is making it safer for trans teens to come out & parents to accept them". Queerty. Retrieved June 8, 2019.
- "Welcome to Our Pride Issue, Featuring Ian Alexander, King Princess, and Chika". them. June 21, 2019. Retrieved June 21, 2019.
- Ramos, Dino-Ray (March 10, 2020). "Casper Van Dien, Ian Alexander, Vivien Ngô, Elyse Dinh And Megan Le Join Corey Deshon's Thriller Daughter". Deadline. Retrieved March 29, 2020.
- Ramos, Dino-Ray (September 2, 2020). "Star Trek: Discovery Introduces First-Ever Non-Binary And Trans Characters With Blu Del Barrio And Ian Alexander". Deadline. Retrieved October 15, 2020.
- Vary, Adam B. (September 2, 2020). "Star Trek: Discovery Makes Franchise History With First Trans, Non-Binary Characters". Variety. Retrieved September 6, 2020.