LOS ANGELES - When I interviewed Lana Condor, who plays fan-favorite mutant Jubilee in her first feature-and the new franchise entry, X-Men: Apocalypse, she did not even have a Wikipedia page yet.
"No, I don't think I would," the 19-year-old said before laughing.
Condor said starting out in such a giant tentpole movie had pluses and minuses.
"It's a platform I'm lucky to have," she said, "and hopefully can use to get more work. But the downside is that filming X-Men was a dream. Everyone treated you like you were the greatest thing ever-and then I came back to L.A. and it took me a year to get another job.
"So, it taught me a lot about myself. You may have done this amazing, massive film, but that's not going to be your whole life. This business is really, really, tough."
Condor says that what was also hard was meeting fan expectations in portraying Jubilee for the first time in a real onscreen role.
"I definitely had anxieties," she admitted. "I hope to portray her as all these people see her in their minds, but everyone's different (and is) going to see her a different way. I think it's going to be really positive, though."
To help her understand the character, Condor laughed and said, "I bought 300 comics with Jubilee. I did it myself, because I was like, 'I need to know what's going on. I went crazy. I watched all the cartoons and as much of the material as I could."
Condor said she has gotten positive feedback about being an Asian actress playing an Asian character on film-and says part of what the franchise is all about is taking people who lare different or look different and make it easier for them to fit into society.
Condor also feels a bond with Jubilee because they were both orphans, although Condor was adopted from Vietnam after only four months.
"There's definitely similarities-but I have a family", she said. "I guess Jubilee has her X-Men family."
- Jerome Maida