Ken Jeong's Life Would Probably Be Just Like His Show Dr. Ken If He Hadn't Become Famous
The doctor-turned-actor says he's still asked for medical advice "all the time"
The actor, 47, who is a licensed medical practitioner, plays a doctor on the series who is interested in getting into comedy.
“This show is essentially what my life would be like if The Hangover had never happened and I stayed at the HMO I worked at,” Jeong tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue. In one episode, “my TV wife said, ‘Ken, I support you doing comedy,’ and it was basically words that my real-life wife had said to me. There are so many moments on the show that remind me of my real life.”
For more of Jeong’s interview, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE on stands Friday
Although Jeong’s character on the show is based on his life, there are still differences between the two men. “He’s obviously very similar to me. But even though he’s well-intentioned, he loses a little bit of self-awareness and a filter, and that’s a bit different from me in real life,” Jeong says. “I’m painfully self-aware at times, and I’m much more reserved and mild-mannered.”
The actor says he is still asked for medical advice despite not having practiced medicine for 10 years. “All the time. Every project I’ve ever done,” he adds. “But I don’t mind. In a way, it keeps me sharp.”
Jeong recalls one memorable time in particular while shooting The Hangover Part II in Bangkok. “I was in full Mr. Chow regalia and we were at a seedy strip club shooting and one of Ed Helms best friends got food poisoning and he called me over the phone,” Jeong says. “I was giving him advice in my real voice but dressed as Mr. Chow. It was filthy and adorable at the same time.”
The new season of Dr. Ken premieres Sept. 23 on ABC.