Kelly Marie Tran (born Loan Tran[6] on January 17, 1989) is an American actress who portrays Rose Tico, a Resistance maintenance worker, in Star Wars: Episode VIII The Last Jedi.[2] Tran narrated the audiobook for The Last Jedi: Cobalt Squadron.[4] She also voiced Rose Tico in the Star Wars: Forces of Destiny episode Shuttle Shock. She will reprise the role of Rose Tico for Star Wars: Episode IX The Rise of Skywalker, set to premiere in 2019.[3]


Family and education

Kelly Marie Tran was born on January 17, 1989 in San Diego, California. Her parents were Vietnamese refugees who had settled in the United States following the Vietnam War. Her mother worked at a funeral home while her father worked at Burger King.[7][8] She studied at Westview High School and later majored in communications at the University of California, Los Angeles.[9]

Early acting career

As a young actor, Tran spent several years in Los Angeles honing her acting skills at the Upright Citizens Brigade, The Second City, and iO West.[10][11] Tran has appeared in several CollegeHumor, the web series Ladies Like Us (2013), Ladies Like Us: The Rise of Neighborhood Watch (2015), the NBC sitcom series About a Boy (2014), and the Netflix film XOXO (2016).[11] She is also a fan of Harry Potter.[10]

The Last Jedi

Tran's casting in Star Wars: Episode VIII The Last Jedi was first announced on February 15, 2016.[12] Tran's character was first identified as the Resistance mechanic Rose Tico in a Vanity Fair article published on May 24, 2017.[13]

Despite the critical and box office success of The Last Jedi, Tran received online abuse from people who disliked her character, Rose. This hostility manifested in racist vandalism to her character's Wookieepedia article and misogynistic remarks on Twitter by conservative vlogger Paul Ray Ramsey.[14][15] In response, attorney Anthony Nguyen praised Tran for being the first "woman of color" to be cast in a leading role in the Star Wars franchise. Meanwhile, journalist Nicole Karlis condemned attacks on Tran as a manifestation of a fear of women who defied sexist stereotypes.[16][17]

On May 6, 2018, Tran deleted all posts on her Instagram account following months of racist and sexist harassment and abuse. An anti-feminist Facebook group claimed credit for running Tran out from Instagram. In response, The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson likened her detractors on Twitter to "manbabies." Star Wars co-stars Mark Hamill and John Boyega, and The Late Show host Stephen Colbert also issued statements defending Tran.[18][19][20] Tran subsequently penned an article in The New York Times describing her experiences as a "woman of color" in American society.[21]

Work in Star Wars


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 IMDb favicon Kelly Marie Tran at the Internet Movie Database
  2. 2.0 2.1 SWCustom-2011 Star Wars: Episode VIII Now Filming on (backup link)
  3. 3.0 3.1 SWCustom-2011 Star Wars: Episode IX Cast Announced on
  4. 4.0 4.1 SWYTlogo Kelly Marie Tran's The Last Jedi Prank and Google Home's Star Wars Trivia BTS on the official Star Wars YouTube channel
  5. Lee Lenker, Maureen (2018-03-16). Porgs, Rose Tico, Luke Skywalker, and more get animated for Star Wars Forces of Destiny. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved on March 16, 2018.
  6. Tran, Kelly Marie (August 21, 2018). Kelly Marie Tran: I Won't Be Marginalized by Online Harassment. The New York Times.
  7. Yam, Kimberly (2017-11-30). Kelly Marie Tran Promotes 'The Last Jedi' In Traditional Vietnamese Garb. HuffPost. Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  8. Jasper, Mary Kate (2017-12-10). Kelly Marie Tran, the Daughter of Refugees, Couldn't Help Crying with Joy at the Last Jedi Premiere. The Mary Sue. Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  9. Rocha, Michael (2016-02-15). [ Entertainment Movies San Diego native joins 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' cast]. The Mary Sue. Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Flaherty, Keely (2016-11-15). Kelly Marie Tran: The Rise of Rose. BuzzFeed News. Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Dornbush, Jonathan (2016-02-15). Who is Star Wars: Episode VIII actress Kelly Marie Tran?. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  12. SWCustom-2011 Star Wars Episode VIII now filming on
  13. Kamp, David (2017-05-24). Cover Story: Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the Definitive Preview. Vanity Fair. Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  14. Racist Attacks Against Kelly Marie Tran posted to Rose Tico's Wookieepedia page. Newsweek (19 December 2017). Retrieved on January 4, 2018.
  15. Kelly Marie Tran Of 'Last Jedi' Facing Racist, Sexist Comments Online. HuffPost (27 December 2017). Retrieved on January 4, 2018.
  16. Attorney Anthony Nguyen Comments on the Racist Backlash Against Vietnamese-American Actress Kelly Marie Tran. Cision. Retrieved on January 4, 2018.
  17. Threats against Kelly Marie Tran highlight a fear of women who break sexist stereotypes. Salon (29 December 2017). Retrieved on January 4, 2018.
  18. Star Wars actress Kelly Marie Tran deletes Instagram posts after abuse. BBC News (June 6, 2018). Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  19. Pro-'Straight White Male Hero' group takes credit for running 'Star Wars' actress Kelly Marie Tran off Instagram. New York Daily News (June 11, 2018). Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  20. John Boyega tells Star Wars fans to stop harassing cast. BBC News (June 13, 2018). Retrieved on June 15, 2018.
  21. Kelly Marie Tran: I Won’t Be Marginalized by Online Harassment. Salon (21 August 2018). Retrieved on September 8, 2018.

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