The 52-year-old actor opened up about his breakout role on Lost as Jin-Soo Kwon, who didn’t make the best first impression on viewers.
In fact, Daniel revealed, his character was almost killed off in the first season.
“From what I understand, it was planned for me to be killed off in season one. I was not a very sympathetic character, so it would have been easy for me to get killed off without the show missing a beat,” he shared.
However, that all changed thanks to one series writer, Monica Macer.
“She is African American and Korean American. She lobbied for me,” he says, and added that they are friends to this day.
Daniel continued, “I also like to think they didn’t think I was so terrible that I didn’t deserve to be on the show. As an Asian actor, you’re just looking to get hired. It’s about working within the system to try and change it when you have the opportunity. The character grew to a place where I don’t think you’d call him a stereotype by the end.”
He also revealed that since his character only spoke Korean at first, the script was actually translated into the language and then Daniel was taught it.
“The greatest benefit of it all was that my Korean was never better. The opportunity to be able to learn Korean on an American TV show is once in a lifetime. So I’m grateful for it,” he shared.
You can next see Daniel in Netflix’s Stowaway, out on April 22. Watch the thrilling trailer here!