While doing the usual scavenging for background information, I was utterly in awe and admiration at what Rich Ting has accomplished to date. Ting is not only an actor, but he is also a stuntman and a model. He has appeared in “Boston Legal,” has done stunts in “G.I. Joe” and “Crank 2: High Voltage” (major blockbuster movies both slated for release in 2009), and has modeled for Neiman Marcus, BVLGARI, and WSS – “ just to name a few.
And, that is just a minuscule part of who Rich Ting is.
As much as Ting has taken an interest in his work as a model, actor, and stuntman, he has also stretched his talents and interests in education, sports, and other extracurricular activities. Rich not only has a B.A. from Yale University, but he graduated with a M.B.A. from the University of Hawaii’s Shidler College of Business Administration, and recently received his J.D. last year from the University of Hawaii’s William S. Richardson School of Law. He excels in a wide range of sports, martial arts, and is well-versed in a variety of languages. Good-looking, highly intelligent, and multitalented, Ting is definitely an upcoming Asian-American talent you don’t want to miss out on knowing.
In this issue, Asiance gives you all the details about this fresh face from Los Angeles.
Asiance: Looking at your resume, you do stunts, act, and you are also a model. So, which did you start with first? And, how did you get into acting, modeling and being a stuntman?
Rich: Throughout high school and college, I was approached by various agents/managers who wanted to represent me in the modeling industry. Due to my extremely busy schedule with sports and academics, I was not able to pursue my modeling career until later in college. I did my first runway show for a New York City men’s clothing boutique, “Ragg’s,” while studying at Yale. After graduating from college, I continued to model part-time while in graduate school. I was accepted to both the William S. Richardson School of Law and the Shidler School of Business Administration at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (joint J.D./M.B.A. degree programs). Modeling in Honolulu was great! I was able to supplement my academic life with projects in Honolulu, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Japan as well as focus more on my theatrical/acting career. I was casted for the character of “Lenny” in the television series, “Beyond the Break,” in which was filmed on the west side of Oahu.
Following my graduation from the joint J.D./M.B.A. program at the University of Hawaii, I was casted to play the role of “Heatblast” in the Warner Bros. feature film, entitled “Ben 10: The Race Against Time.” Once I relocated to Los Angeles, I dedicated all of my attention and focus towards my career as a model, actor, and stuntman. I have a close family relative who has been working as a Hollywood stuntman for over fifteen years. Due to my extensive background in martial arts (1st degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do, Jeet Kune Do, and Wing Chun) as well as being a NCAA Division I collegiate athlete (4-year football player at Yale University), I have always maintained my physical health and conditioning. As a result, I became introduced to the world of stunts and had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects to further develop my skills as a Hollywood stuntman. Such projects include: Crank 2: High Voltage (starring Jason Statham), G.I. Joe (starring Brendan Fraser, Dennis Quaid, Channing Tatum, Marlon Wayans, & Sienna Miller), Mask of the Ninja (starring Casper Van Dien), Game (starring Gerard Butler), and To Live & Die (starring Sean Patrick Flannery).
Asiance: Which do you like better: acting, doing stunts, or modeling?
Rich: I enjoy doing everything! I am grateful that I am able to work as a model, actor, and stuntman. Whether I’m doing a high-fashion runway show for a top designer, print campaign for a corporate company, acting in a feature film or commercial, or combating in an intense martial arts fight scene, I love every second of it! It has truly been a dream come true for me to not only be in Hollywood working as a model, actor, and stuntman but to also find a career that I love and am fully committed to. It sounds clichÃ©, but I can honestly say that I’m living a dream!
Asiance: In regards to doing stunts, I know this may sound cliche, but did people like Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, and similar people spark your interest in wanting to do stunts?
Rich: Of course! Ever since I was three years old, Bruce Lee was the main influence and reason why I started studying martial arts. I used to memorize all of his moves and antics and even taught myself how to use nunchucks at the age of six simply by watching and studying his films. As I matured as a martial artist, my interest in other individuals, like Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Steven Seagal, Ernie Reyes, Jr., Don Wilson (to name a few) continued to motivate me to persevere in my study of Tae Kwon Do, Jeet Kune Do, and Wing Chun. In fact, I was able to earn my first degree black belt from Ernie Reyes’ West Coast Tae Kwon Do. I have a tremendous amount of respect for these individuals as well as for the numerous stuntmen that sacrifice themselves in order to make the action scene that much more spectacular.
Asiance: Have you ever thought about becoming a singer?
Rich: I always tell people that a secret passion of mine is singing and that if I could, I would stop everything and pursue my fantasy career as a singer. I have fortunately been too busy working as a model, actor, and stuntman to focus on my vocal skills.
Asiance: And, wow, graduated from Yale, and then continuing your education to receive your J.D. and your M.B.A.? That’s pretty impressive. If you weren’t in the entertainment and fashion industry, what career would you have pursued?
Rich: If I was not in the entertainment and fashion industry, I would probably be pursuing a career in business of some sort. I always thought that an ideal job for me in corporate America would be one that combined finance, law, and marketing. I enjoy working with people/clients and thus would want a career that allowed me to bring all of my educational backgrounds (humanities, communication, finance, law, and business administration) together.
Asiance: So, lets talk about your most current work. You were a stuntman for the upcoming 2009 release, “G.I. Joe.” How did you get to become a stuntman for that movie? And, how was it to work on the set?
Rich: “G.I. Joe” was incredible! First, growing up as a young boy, I absolutely loved watching “G.I. Joe,” the cartoon. I collected all the action figures and dressed up as G.I. Joe for Halloween, etc. So to actually work on the feature film was an amazing experience for me. It has an all-star cast, including Brendan Fraser, Dennis Quaid, Channing Tatum, Sienna Miller, and Marlon Wayans (to name a few). Being amongst such decorated actors was a humbling experience. The sets that were created and designed for the film are magnificent, and I can’t wait until it comes out in theaters. It was truly an honor to have been selected to work on this film under the direction of R.A. Rondell and Keith Woulard, two of the top Hollywood stunt coordinators in the industry.
Asiance: So, what’s next for you, Rich? What projects or plans are you currently working on, in terms of your career?
Rich: I recently completed filming a television commercial/webisode series for Honda, in which was directed by the well-known Christopher Robinson. I was casted as a principal role for the character of “Link.” We are scheduled to finish the last few episodes later this fall. I also completed working on “Crank 2: High Voltage” with Jason Statham. As far as modeling this summer, I have been a runway model for Macy’s, Kenneth Cole, Dillard’s, Tommy Bahama, Express, Honolua Surf Co., Metro Park and Marc Ecko. Future modeling projects for the fall include Ed Hardy fashion show and runway for fashion week in New York City.
Asiance: What’s the best thing or the thing you like most about being in the entertainment/fashion industry?
Rich: The best thing that I like most about being in the entertainment/fashion industry is the variety of projects, opportunities, designers, stylists, and fellow models that I am able to work with and befriend. It has been a dream come true to model for well-known designers/companies and participate in high-budgeted campaigns. I enjoy my job and career as a high fashion, editorial model and am extremely grateful for every opportunity/gig that I work
Asiance: Do you see yourself being in the entertainment and fashion industry for a long time to come?
Rich: I would love to continue modeling and acting in the entertainment and fashion industry for as long as possible. I am committed to perfecting my craft as an actor and hope to always have the opportunity to model whether it is for runway or print.
Asiance: What is some advice you would like to give to those who want to pursue what you’re currently doing?
Rich: I would advise anyone who wants to pursue a career in the entertainment and fashion industry to follow their hearts and aspirations. Despite the fact that the majority of the public views models and actors in a glamorous light, there is definitely a dark side to this business. I have had to encounter and endure numerous auditions, rejections, and overall criticism throughout my career in the entertainment and fashion industry. It is important that anyone wishing to pursue this career path know that they will experience disappointment before success and happiness. It is this disappointment, however, that makes every job, project, feature film, or campaign that much more special and meaningful when you finally book it! It is imperative that you stay true to yourself and ultimately enjoy what you are doing.
To learn more about Rich Ting, visit www.myspace.com/richting.
To contact Tanya, you may e-mail her at email@example.com.