By Excel DyQuiangco
Not many children can brag about working with Asian actor John Cho but for young Filipina Rihanne Quionn who starred with him in Star Trek Beyond top billed by Chris Pine, it was not just another day at the park.
“It was a fun experience,” says the six-year old who initially wanted to become a pastry chef and open her own bakeshop but now wants to become an actress. “I had a great time with all of them.”
The young actress first had her taste of auditions when her mother, Carla, responded to a casting call posted on a social networking site. After being asked to audition, the line-up was whittled to only six Asian girls and finally, to two. Interestingly the other girl who was chosen aside from Rihanne became her body double. “I thought there will be two daughters of Sulu (Cho’s character) but apparently, there was only one and my daughter was it. We feel so blessed that she was able to experience all of these.”
First day of shooting involved Rihanne playing with Cho and his onscreen partner. “I think she was more interested in meeting the aliens and in doing costume changes than in actually delivering her lines,” says Carla. “They had so much fun running around the set that Cho even asked my daughter if he can be her onscreen daddy. Of course Rihanne said yes!” Carla adds that Cho and her real dad even looked quite similar.
One of the most memorable moments in the movie was when John Cho had to carry Rihanne back and forth for about fifty times to get the right shot for the film. “It was still a lot of fun,” says the young actress.
Her mother chides, “For me it was such an exhausting experience seeing them go the same route over and over again. But my little girl did it and she wasn’t a tad bit complaining. She didn’t even use her body double.”
Part of being in a Hollywood movie also involved getting absent from school for a day or two. Rihanne remembers that she had an attendance of 98% the whole school year – one absence when she had a fever and the other during the first day of the movie. Carla also had to excuse herself from her employer. “I told my boss that my daughter will be in a Hollywood movie and I don’t want to miss out on this opportunity,” she says.
In the near future, Rihanne wants to be involved in a lot of films where her acting prowess can be displayed. “Maybe play a baker onscreen,” she says.