From growing up in the Netherlands to having her own fashion line, Highdee Kuan had an interesting background before joining Netflix's The Brothers Sun.
Highdee Kuan brings Alexis Kong to life in the new action series. Kong is Charles Sun's childhood friend and an assistant district attorney in Los Angeles who gets entangled in the triad war involving the Sun family.
5 Things to Know About Highdee Kuan
Highdee Kuan Grew Up in the Netherlands
Highdee Kuan was born in San Francisco, California, but she was raised in the Netherlands.
Speaking with Urban Pitch in December 2016, Kuan opened up about growing up in Holland, noting that "it was truly an amazing experience" yet "a bit isolating:"
"In retrospect, it was truly an amazing experience. I lived in a small rural village until I was 16, but went to school in one of the larger cities, so it was great to have those two separate experiences. It was at times a bit isolating, though, because most of my family still lived in the States."
It was not an easy experience, though, for Kuan. The actress told Society 6 that she knew "growing up in a small Dutch rural village" limited her to achieve her dream of acting on the big stage:
"I always felt a bit like an outsider, to be very honest. Although I consider myself very lucky to have been able to call different countries and continents my home, it did somehow always push me to be more introverted and reflective, in a sense. But because of that, I was a bit of a dreamer and was always able to find solace and comfort in movies, in art and in dance. Especially movies– I always knew that I wanted to somehow be part of them, but growing up in a small Dutch rural village it just didn’t seem feasible. It wasn’t until I moved back to the States that I thought to myself that it might be something worth pursuing."
Kuan decided to move back to the United States, leading to the start of her acting journey.
Highdee Previously Starred in Quantum Leap and Netflix’s You
Before joining The Brothers Sun, Highdee Kuan's previous notable roles included Quantum Leap and You Season 2.
The 25-year-old actress appeared as Luna in You Season 2. The character interacted with Penn Badgley's Joe Goldberg in one scene, flirting with him while inside a bar.
Kuan also starred in an episode of Quantum Leap as Mallory Yang, a reporter who investigates the nuclear launch and wants to expose Dr. Woolsey after she learns that he is planning to weaponize his invention.
Highdee is a Big Soccer Fan
Highdee Kuan has a passion for soccer and she openly supports the Holland national team.
In the same interview with Urban Pitch, Kuan shared her happy memories involving the sport, acknowledging the fact that watching World Cup games that include the Dutch team "probably stands out to [her]:"
"Any World Cup game that the Dutch team was involved in probably stands out to me. I think those matches became signifiers in the timeline of my life —in a way that I can remember what I was doing and where I was and who I was with, what I was doing with my life, etc. for almost every game."
The Chinese-German-American actress recalled one moment when she cried during the Spain versus Holland in the 2010 World Cup final:
"I remember crying during the Spain versus Holland World Cup final when we lost. I was so confident that we were gonna snatch the title, so that was a pretty brutal experience. Of course, rationally I understand that it’s just a sport, but emotionally those games are so much more than that. But I also will never forget when we played Spain again in the last World Cup and beat them 5-1. That was glorious. That [Robin] van Persie goal was everything."
Highdee Used to Have Her Own Fashion Line
From 2016 to 2019, Highdee Kuan used to have a clothing line called Dirty Old Dutch Man.
The five-foot-three actress admitted that she "had to put it on hold" because she was busy with acting projects. Still, she promised to unveil "more designs" in the future (via Urban Pitch):
"More designs! I kind of had to put it on hold for a minute because I’ve just been too busy with other things and thus haven’t really been actively promoting it, but hopefully next year we can really push out more products."
In a separate sitdown with Urban Pitch in November 2019, Kuan explained how her love for fashion started, sharing her journey from her childhood to blogging about it throughout college:
"It started when I was super young. I would always be on these forums and talk to other girls from all over the world, and ended up starting a blog. I was blogging all throughout college, and as my other interests in life developed, I realized I didn’t want to just blog.But when I started my own line, I didn’t realize how hard it was — production wise, dealing with customer service, shipping everything out — and I didn’t have a good enough system in place. I was always so overwhelmed and stressed and at one point I was like this is not fun for me anymore. So I put it on the back burner. I realized that I should stop trying to turn all of my hobbies into businesses."
Highdee Connected to Her Brother Suns’ Character’s Love of Cheetos
In The Brothers Sun, Highdee Kuan's Alexis Kong is usually munching at Cheetos during several scenes throughout its eight-episode run.
The actress admitted that she instantly connected to her character after learning that she's "super driven and addicted to spicy hot Cheetos."
Kuan also shared her auditioning experience for her The Brothers Sun role:
"My process was pretty similar to Justin’s where it was through my agent and reps. I read the line about Alexis being super driven and addicted to spicy hot Cheetos, and I thought, 'Okay, this girl, I know!', I remember reading the pilot and it was one of those experiences where you read something so good, you don’t know what you have to do, but you need to be a part of it. I remember taping within two hours of getting the sides. Normally, I give it a few days to sink in, but I felt a connection. After sending in my audition, I did the traditional callback. Then they canceled my producer session, and I thought it was over, that I didn’t get the job, that they didn’t want to see me."
Where Can Fans Follow Highdee Kuan?
For more updates about Highdee Kuan's projects and personal life, fans can follow her on Instagram at @highdeekuan.
The Brothers Sun is streaming on Netflix.