Ken Jeong, who famously played the naked crime lord in The Hangover, was a scene-stealer again Sunday at the MTV Movie Awards, honoring his wife’s battle against breast cancer with a moving tribute and tears onstage and backstage.
“Todd [Phillips] and Bradley Cooper … helped me through a really difficult time when my wife was going through breast-cancer treatment,” an emotional Jeong, 40, said in accepting the award for Best WTF Moment. “The reason why I did this is that she taught me that life is short, and don’t be afraid to take chances.”
Jeong’s wife Tran, who has been cancer free for two years, beamed from her seat inside the Gibson Amphitheatre in Los Angeles.
Tears welled up again backstage as Jeong talked more about his wife, with whom he has twin daughters Alexa and Zooey. “She is the brave one and just my best friend, my inspiration,” he said. “I’m just really grateful. … I was just celebrating her. This whole night is about celebrating her.”
He then joked about the real reason he was misty-eyed. “I was really tearing up because they took the popcorn award away from me – that’s why,” he said with a laugh.
Jeong – who is a licensed doctor and also appears on NBC’s Community – called his win “the best feeling in the world” and again credited his director and costar. “In all seriousness, Todd and Bradley really got me through a really tough time,” he said. “I don’t think anyone really knows what great guys Todd and Bradley were.”