Awkwafina Gets Candid About Experiencing 'Imposter Syndrome' When She Was Cast in 'The Farewell'

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Awkwafina W Magazine
W Magazine

It's only January, but Awkwafina is having a breakout year.

At just 31 years old, the actress is winning awards and making a name for herself. Last week, she made Golden Globes history, becoming the first Asian-American actress to win a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy for her role in The Farewell.

W Magazine sat down with the rising star as part of a series of awards season interviews with actors and actresses who are hailed as having the best movie performances of 2019, where she reflected on her early career before nabbing the role in the drama. In the video, Awkwafina begins by sharing that the first audition she ever booked was for the MTV show, Girl Code, before recalling what was different about her audition for The Farewell.

"So, when you get a call from your whole entire team, that means that you've done something horrible, or something awesome is about to happen," she explains. "So I think it was one of those calls, from like, the entire team. I was definitely over the moon when I found out I got the part."

"But at the same time I was nervous, because there were various firsts," she adds. "That I would be doing drama, would be the first one, and then also I would have to speak Chinese. There's nerves, there's a degree of imposter syndrome, there's anxiety. But I think when you're there, and you're in front of the camera, and you're in wardrobe and you're in China, it was different. It was good."

Elsewhere in the candid interview, Awkwafina shares her go-to karaoke song ("Wonderwall" by Oasis), the first CD she bought (Mariah Carey's Butterfly) and her first celebrity crushes (Jonathan Taylor Thomas and John Travolta in Look Who's Talking Too).

"He was in charge of his own destiny, he knew what he was doing," she joked of her affection for Travolta. "He had a family and he was a dad...Except when he was almost cheating with that woman... We don't talk about her."

ET was with Awkwafina shortly after her Golden Globes win, where she reflected on her "insanely crazy" honor.

"I was genuinely shocked," she said. "I think a part of you just detaches from your body and you see yourself like looking down at yourself and then you don't. Then you go black, but then you look at all you’re the people that you're celebrating with and you realize that you're all in it together."

See more in the video below. 

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