Dustin Nguyen (born Nguyễn Xuân Trí, September 17, 1962) is a Vietnamese-American actor and filmmaker. He is best known for his roles as Harry Truman Ioki on 21 Jump Street and as Johnny Loh on VIP. In film, he is known for starring in Little Fish, The Doom Generation and The Rebel.
Nguyễn Xuân Trí
September 17, 1962
Saigon, South Vietnam
(m. 2001; div. 2012)
Nguyen was born Nguyễn Xuân Trí in Saigon, South Vietnam. His mother My Le, was an actress and dancer, and his father, Xuan Phat, was an actor, comedian, writer, and producer in Vietnam. The family left Vietnam in April 1975 as it fell to Communist Viet Cong and North Vietnamese Army forces.
They arrived in Guam, then the family was moved to a refugee camp in Fort Chaffee, Arkansas, and finally with the assistance of a Methodist church they relocated to Des Peres, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis. After Nguyen graduated from Garden Grove High School in Garden Grove, CA, he attended Orange Coast College and majored in communications. Nguyen practices several martial arts including Muay Thai, Tae Kwon Do, Eskrima, and Jeet Kune Do.
He made his acting debut on Magnum, P.I., portraying a Cambodian freedom fighter in the episode "All For One." He was a cast member on both 21 Jump Street and VIP, and has guest-starred on a number of other series, including General Hospital, Highlander, and most notably seaQuest DSV, playing the role of Chief William Shan. Moreover, he played a cameo role in Charlie's Angels. Nguyen also auditioned for the role of Liu Kang in Mortal Kombat, but lost out to Robin Shou. In 1993 he played a Vietnamese man sent off to fight with the Viet Cong, in the film Heaven & Earth. In 2005, Nguyen starred as a former heroin addict opposite Academy Award-winner Cate Blanchett in the critically acclaimed Little Fish. He starred in the 2007 films The Rebel and Saigon Eclipse. In 2008 he starred in the Vietnamese martial art film Huyen Thoai Bat Tu (The Legend Is Alive, The Immortal Legend) where he plays a mentally disabled martial artist. Nguyen screened in 2009 the thriller The Gauntlet directed by Matt Eskandari; he stars with Chinese actress Bai Ling. He made a small cameo in 22 Jump Street as Vietnamese Jesus.
Nguyen continues to act and make films in Vietnam full-time. He made his feature directorial debut in the Vietnamese fantasy film Once Upon a Time in Vietnam, in which he also starred. He recently starred in the Vietnamese film Gentle that premiered at the 2015 Busan International Film Festival where he received strong reception for his performance.
He was cast in Cinemax's Warrior in a recurring role before he officially joined the main cast in season two of the series.
After a car accident late at night that occurred on September 3, 2001, on California's Interstate 5 Highway between San Francisco and Los Angeles during a Labor Day weekend that left his wife (Angela Rockwood) a quadriplegic, Nguyen and his wife became active in The Christopher and Dana Reeve Paralysis Resource Center. The accident also claimed the life of Vietnamese actress Thuy Trang, a member of the original cast of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. He and Rockwood divorced in 2011.
Nguyen is based in Vietnam full-time. In 2011, he married Vietnamese actress-model Bebe Pham with whom he has two daughters, born in 2013 and 2015.
He is fluent in English in addition to his native Vietnamese.
|1985||Sunset Strip||Chinese Youth|
|1992||Rapid Fire||Paul Yang|
|1993||No Escape, No Return||Tommy Cuff|
|1993||Heaven & Earth||Sau|
|1994||3 Ninjas Kick Back||Glam|
|1994||Vanishing Son II||Hung|
|1994||Vanishing Son IV||Hung|
|1995||The Doom Generation||Quickiemart Clerk|
|2007||Finishing the Game: The Search for a New Bruce Lee||Troy Poon|
|2009||The Legend Is Alive||Long||Actor|
|2010||Fool for Love||Dung|
|2011||Popular Dysfunctions||Comandante Chitt|
|2013||Once Upon a Time in Vietnam||Dao||Director/Actor|
|2014||22 Jump Street||Vietnamese Jesus/Harry Truman Ioki||Cameo|
|2015||The Man with the Iron Fists 2||Li Kung||Actor|
|1985||Magnum, P.I.||Joe||2 episodes|
|1986||The A-Team||Bobby||Episode: "Point of No Return"|
|1987||Shell Game||Doug||Episode: "Pai Gow"|
|1987–1990||21 Jump Street||Officer Harry Truman Ioki||Main role (seasons 1–4); 82 episodes|
|1989||Danger Bay||Duk Chin||Episode: "Open Book"|
|1992||The Commish||Robert Hue||Episode: "Charlie Don't Surf"|
|1992||Street Justice||Episode: "Bad Choices"|
|1992||Highlander||Chu Lin||Episode: "The Road Not Taken"|
|1993||Murder, She Wrote||David Kuan||Episode: "A Death in Hong Kong"|
|1993||Highlander||Jimmy Sang||Episode: "Revenge of the Sword"|
|1993||SeaQuest DSV||Chief William Shan||4 episodes|
|1994–1996||Phantom 2040||Tranh||5 episodes|
|1995||Vanishing Son||Hung||Episode: "Single Flame"|
|1995||VR.5||Ky Buchanan||Episode: "Simon's Choice"|
|1995||Kung Fu: The Legend Continues||Lo Gee||Episode: "Flying Fists of Fury II"|
|1997||Die Gang||Marc Wiessner||Main role; 13 episodes|
|1999–2002||VIP||Johnny Loh||Main role (seasons 3–4); 62 episodes|
|2003||JAG||Lt. Bao Hien||Episode: "Fortunate Son"|
|2009||The Unit||Transit Officer||Episode: "Chaos Theory"|
|2012||The Amazing Race Vietnam||host||Season 1|
|2018||This Is Us||Bao||Episode: "Sometimes"|
|2019–present||Warrior||Zing||Recurring (season 1); main role (season 2)|
- The Amazing Race Vietnam (2012) – Himself
- 2007 AZN Asian Excellence Awards (2007) – Himself
- "E! True Hollywood Story" – Himself (1 episode, 2004)
- "Howard Stern" – Himself (4 episodes, 1999)
- "The Howard Stern Radio Show" – Himself (2 episodes, 1999)
- "Intimate Portrait" – Himself (1 episode)
- CinemAbility (2011) (filming) – Himself
- The Slanted Screen (2006) – Himself
In March 2009, Nguyen won the Vietnamese Cánh Diều Vàng (Golden Kite Award) for best actor, for his starring role in the Phuoc Sang Films vehicle Huyền Thoại Bất Tử (The Legend Is Alive). For the same role, that year he won a Golden Lotus Award (Vietnam's Oscar) for Best Actor. He also won China's Golden Rooster Award for Best International Actor at China's Golden Rooster and Thousand Flowers International Film Festival 2009.
In 2015, at the Milan International Film Festival, Dustin won the Leonardo da Vinci Golden Horse Award for Best Supporting Actor in the Vietnamese film GENTLE; an adaptation of Fyodor Dostoevsky's A GENTLE CREATURE."
- Levine, Robert (May 24, 1994). "Taking a Big Leap From 'Jump Street' After finding success in the '80s on the police show, Dustin Nguyen is moving into films and 'seaQuest' while sharpening his martial arts skills. Series: FAST TRACK: Up and Comers in Arts and Entertainment * One in a Series". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 11, 2011.
- "dustin nguyen 21 jump street star on life in vietnam". People.
- Knutzen, Eirik (July 4, 1987). "One Jump ahead". Toronto Star. Retrieved October 20, 2012.
- Chen, Vivien Lou (May 1, 1992). "Jobless Actor Rejects Asian Stereotypes Series". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 11, 2011.
- Brennan, Patricia (December 13, 1987). "Dustin Nguyen Out Of Saigon And into TV". The Washington Post. cglass.vinu.edu. Archived from the original on January 10, 2008. Retrieved October 20, 2012.
- Dustin Nguyen: A Man Ahead of His Time, November 22, 2019
- Chang, Richard (March 31, 2009). "Vietnamese film festival returns to O.C." ocregister.com. Archived from the original on June 9, 2009. Retrieved October 20, 2012.
- Brown, Todd (November 27, 2008). "Dustin Nguyen Returns in Vietnamese Action Drama THE LEGEND IS ALIVE (HUYỀN THOẠI BẤT TỬ)". ScreenAnarchy. Archived from the original on October 1, 2017. Retrieved January 7, 2021.
- "'21 Jump Street' veteran plays Vietnamese Jesus Christ in big-screen sequel". United Press International. Retrieved November 30, 2016.
- Brown, Todd (January 23, 2015). "GENTLE: Watch Dustin Nguyen In Vietnamese Dostoyevsky Adaptation". ScreenAnarchy. Retrieved November 30, 2016.
- Petski, Denise (May 9, 2019). "'Warrior' Casts Four For Season 2 Of Cinemax Drama Series; Promotes Dustin Nguyen To Regular". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved May 14, 2019.
- "Dustin Nguyen: 21 Jump Street Star on Life in Vietnam". People. February 25, 2015. Retrieved November 30, 2016.
- "Perry Yung on Instagram: "#dustinnguyen in da house! It's getting hot in here now. #hbo #CinemaxWarrior"". Instagram. Archived from the original on December 24, 2021. Retrieved July 3, 2018.
- Brown, Todd (March 3, 2009). "Dustin Nguyen Star Vehicle THE LEGEND IS ALIVE Dominates The Vietnamese Golden Kite Awards". ScreenAnarchy. Retrieved January 7, 2021.
- "culture vulture". vnagency.com. December 24, 2009. Retrieved October 20, 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Dustin Nguyen.|
- Dustin Nguyen at IMDb
- Lisa Lee (July 7, 2006). "No 'Little Fish'". AsianWeek.com. Archived from the original on October 16, 2007. Retrieved January 17, 2008.
- Allan Donnelly (March 2002). "V.I.P moves are no Hollywood make-believe". Men's Fitness. Retrieved January 17, 2008.
- "Dustin's destiny". Nguoi Viet Daily News. March 1, 2007. Archived from the original on August 5, 2009. Retrieved July 30, 2009.