Elizabeth Lazan (or Liz, as she prefers to be called) truly is a citizen of the world. The Italian-chinese actress was born in Singapore, but has spent much of her time traveling the globe, honing her skills as an actress and discovering the cultures of the world. The highly sought after presenter recently filmed her very own food and travel show, and we managed to get a hold of her for a quick chat about her new show, whitewashing in Hollywood, and foods she refuses to eat.
What are some of the projects you’re pursuing currently?
Besides acting and hosting, producing has become a stronger part of my pursuits. I’m starting to write and prep for more travel/food videos alongside Crack The Cookie Code’s current weekly episode release.
What prompted your move away from Singapore? Did you feel you’d hit the ceiling in the industry?
I always knew I wanted to travel and live in NYC as an Actress/Creative in my 20s. During that time, I came across this book by the legendary teacher William Esper – “The Actor’s Art and Craft”. I felt very aligned to it and after I went over for a studio visit, I knew I wanted to train with the best. I got accepted into the school, ended up working under the man himself and since then been based in two countries between US & Singapore.
Much has been said about whitewashing and lack of opportunities for non-white actors in Hollywood. As an Italian/Chinese actress, what is your take on this? What needs to be done in order for the industry to progress?
People generally like to label other people and put them in boxes. I think that’s where the trouble lies – the perceived visual stereotypes. If creators step up and produce stories that show an authentic cross section of society, and not just a version of it, the true magic of story telling comes in.
Can you tell us about your new show?
Crack The Cookie Code is about food, friendship, adventure. It’s about two exploration junkies (Jeane and myself!), traveling cross-country from NYC to Los Angeles uncovering exotic interpretations of the east in the west, one bite at a time. We crack fortune cookies along the way – and it’s message helps us decide our next path!
What is your personal favourite Asian dish? Have you learnt to prepare it yourself?
I would go with either satay or chicken rice. I can’t make either – but I have a Thai style mince beef dish that I learned how to cook as a student in New York. It’s got a special ingredient and has been my staple overseas!
What is something you will not eat?
Intestines and eyes!
If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
As a foodie, this is so hard but I would say chicken rice or spaghetti bolognese!
What has been your favourite destination so far?
Right now it has to be Venice, Italy. The food, the people, the architecture, the mystery, the art – its magic.
You are given an elephant. Where do you hide it?
I would have a special wand that could shrink the elephant into a little pendant when I needed to hide it – and I’d wear it around my neck to keep it close to my heart!
Catch Crack The Cookie Code on A&E Television Networks Asia, Channel FYI