Sometimes in life, you just want it all. Sometimes, you get it.
Instead of settling for one career, you pursue everything that enraptures you. If you persist hard enough, you become a force of nature that dominates in every sector you touch. Such is the case with Kim Lee, a Vietnamese-American DJ, model and actress who has trail-blazed her way through photo-shoots, nightclubs, and blockbuster movies across the globe. She has electrified nightclubs in Singapore, Saigon, and Las Vegas. She was also in 2011’s The Hangover Part II.
We were lucky enough sit down with Kim and hear her thoughts on modeling, trailblazing, and success. The interview is presented below for your viewing pleasure.
What inspired you to become a model? A DJ?
I always loved photography and creating. I’ve been taking photos since my teen years and I love music. I’ve been playing the piano since I was 8 and so when I started DJing I picked it up quick and really enjoyed putting together music. It makes me happy I get to travel the world doing what I love so can’t really complain.
What’s a typical week like for someone who is both a model and DJ? We know you travel plenty.
I’m always on my computer working setting up photoshoots , tours and now that I’m branching out doing more than just DJing. It’s a lot more work for me. I’m producing my own TV shows in Asia and doing a lot of behind the scene stuff. It’s definitely a challenge for me but I love challenging myself. But no matter how busy I am, I put working out first. It helps me mentally and physically.
Dominating in two, unrelated industries simultaneously requires innovative thinking. How have you achieved your success?
Persistent and passion. I just kept focusing on what I wanted to do without explaining to anyone. I knew what I wanted and that was it for me. Once I set my mind into something I give my all. If it doesn’t work out, I find other ways and that’s the challenging part for me that I love. I don’t stop until I get it.
That success has definitely made you a trailblazer. Do you have your eyes on any other industries?
Besides music I love film and TV. I mean you’re talking to a person that believes you should do everything while you can. My family has been pushing me to do movies and films and they’re like, “You got what it takes and you’re such a natural on camera”, and I knew that but deep down I wasn’t ready. It’s timing too. Now I’m confident to say I’m ready for that new chapter. I’m working on several projects right now. So I’m home writing new content and dealing with production. It’s a whole different world but it’s exciting. For example, I came up with Girl Talk show and hit up my good friend Levy Tran who’s an actress with a great personality. She was down with my idea and now a network in Asia loves it and picked it up which I’m so excited about.
You have an incredibly avid fan base. Do you have any great fan stories?
I honestly have great fans from all over the world. I have stories for days. I had a fan fly into my shows and gave me love letters and flowers. One guy found out where I lived and that was very scary so I had to report that to the cops but some are protective of me. For example, one negative comment on social media and they would attack that person. I’m thankful for those who support me.
How did it feel when you got your first modeling gig?
That first modeling gig was really exciting, of course. You get to express yourself on the camera and get into character so that’s fun to me.
Describe the proudest moment of your life.
Proudest moment was me coming to Vietnam to perform in front of thousands of people and my family especially my grandparents seeing that and understood what I do for work made me so happy! I mean trying to explain to your grandparents who are old fashion what you do isn’t the easiest thing to do. Asian families always expect their kids to be a doctor or lawyer so I knew I had a lot of proving to do.
What’s your favorite thing about Vietnam?
I love that there’s so much history there and the food is just oh my god something else. Vietnam is growing so fast right now and the nightlife is so much fun. It’s always an adventure when I go there.
What are your hobbies outside of work? Guilty pleasures?
I love working out I’m actually obsessed and I love playing the piano and reading. I know people are probably like what? But yeah I love learning new things. I’m a curious person.
The best lesson you’ve ever learned.
To not depend on anyone and never get too comfortable and have thick skin!!