Alex Lin is an award-nominated playwright, screenwriter and journalist, based in Saddle River, New Jersey. Her work is powered by a drive to bridge the gap between science and entertainment industries. As a space journalist and executive producer with Supercluster, Lin has worked with former astronauts, NASA executives, Hollywood celebrities and others to bring powerful stories to life. On Real Astronaut/Play Astronaut, a Supercluster content series that brings real life and silver screen astronauts together in conversation, a recent episode Lin produced highlights actor David Oyelowo and former astronaut Alvin Drew discussing the 2020 American sci-fi film, The Midnight Sky. Along with exclusive coverage of the Netflix movie, the episode raised awareness for Drew’s initiative, the Patti Grace Smith Fellowship – a scholarship empowering Black Excellence in the aerospace industry. As a playwright, Lin’s scripts have been workshopped and produced with Women’s Theatre Festival, Miami University, University of Idaho, Actors Theatre of Louisville (PTC) and more. She is a 2020 Pass the Pen nominee at Ashland New Plays Festival, a 2020 ScreenCraft Stay Play Quarterfinalist and a member of the 2020/21 Asian American Arts Alliance Virtual Residency. Read on to learn more about Alex and what makes her an Amazing Asian in the Arts!
Name: Alex Lin
Heritage: Chinese/Appalachian Irish
Hometown:Saddle River, New Jersey
Current City: Back home in Saddle River!
Currently drafting a one-woman astronaut play; facilitating some press coverage of George Clooney’s The Midnight Sky; and, just generally trying to not lose my mind.
What are some of your favorite credits/projects?
My first full length 39 Revolutions will always hold a special place in my heart.
Any advice for young people getting into the arts?
Never let anyone tell you that your idea is stupid.
How did you get your start?
I played Jack’s Mom #2 in Into The Woods, Jr. in elementary school and have been hooked ever since. Many years later, I went to NYU and allegedly got a bachelor’s degree. The rest is a rollercoaster ride of working very odd and depressing jobs in dingy, dark basements until I finally decided to stop waiting around for someone else to tell my story.
Do you have any favorite moments in your career that you’d like to share?
When I was in Actors Theatre of Louisville’s production of Dracula this past season, I got kneed in the eye by one of my flight partners. He felt so bad afterwards that he gave me this giant bag of Skittles, Kit Kats and some other candy that I can’t remember (possible memory loss?). Honestly, I considered getting kneed again just for more candy.
What have you found is the biggest challenge in your career?
Consistently and ardently trusting that what one has to say is important.
What are some interesting facts about yourself?
I’m a professional space journalist for A24 Films’ frontline space agencySupercluster. I’m also double-jointed in both of my thumbs.
Who do you admire?
I have a deep admiration for George Lucas. He’s my secret hero – secret only because certain sci-fi communities can be really hostile sometimes. But, I’ve always loved Star Wars and dreamed of writing some EU content someday.
Ripley from Alien is also my person icon, of course.
Do you have any mentors?
Robin Seemangal and Pirronne Yousefzadeh have truly shaped and changed my perspective forever. I am forever grateful for all that they have done and continue to do for me. It’s also really nice to just full-chestedly say that both of my mentors are POC. After having existed in PWIs for so long, I’m comforted by the fact that we are fighting to be heard and represented - and it’s working.
If you come from parents that are not in the arts, what parts of them do you see in yourself that have helped you succeed in the arts?
I suppose my deep fascination and respect for science comes from my doctor parents. To me, there is nothing more true than our endless search for scientific discovery. I find a lot of solace in thinking about how the smallest phenomena in the world really work.
What skills did you find to be the most helpful in your career?
Let’s say a flexible tenacity has helped me meet the many people who have helped carry me to where I am today.
What is your greatest accomplishment?
Probably being nominated for a ScreenCraft award alongside Shia LaBeouf. Or, just the fact that anyone has been moved or felt validated by my work.
What do you love most about what you do?
I love that I can uncover all of the rage and passion that women of color are hardly afforded the luxury of expressing in real life.
If you’ve crossed the table from performing to being on a creative team, what made you take the leap from performing to writing or directing/music directing, and how did it change your way of thinking?
I got tired of constantly editing myself to fit into a mold that would never fit me because it was inherently white. I figured that I could either keep adapting to the situation or try to fix it. I decided to fix it. It was a good decision.
Now, I intimately know that there is no excuse for leaving any story untold. It’s a hefty responsibility, but the fruits are worth it.
What inspires you?
The night sky.
If you could name one point in time when everything changed for you, what was it?
After I wrote beth, I realized that our perceptions of revenge and forgiveness have been strongly influenced by the Western point of view. Now, I try to employ the Eastern perspectives of revenge and forgiveness almost zealously. Revenge is a form of advocacy for the marginalized; forgiveness is a privilege that must be earned.
It definitely helps me sleep better at night.
To find out more about Alex, please visit her at:
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