‘Moonfall’ Star Kelly Yu on World Disasters, Halle Berry, and Incorrect Chinese Tattoos

Kelly Yu has a lot going on. So much so, that she hasn’t really thought about what she would do if the world was ending. Unlike her character in the upcoming Sci-Fi film Moonfall, which tells the story of the Moon falling into the Earth causing mass chaos, Yu has no idea what she would do in that situation.

“That makes me want to stay away from beaches,” laughed Yu during a Zoom call with The Nerds of Color. “I don’t know, man. I hope that never happens to us.”

Yu plays Michelle, a foreign exchange student living with NASA astronaut Jo Fowler (Halle Berry) when disaster strikes and the moon begins falling towards the Earth. When Jo is tasked with handling the Moon situation, Michelle is tasked with taking care of Jo’s young son Jimmy as they venture towards the military base miles away.

“Michelle is very brave,” Yu explained. “She cares about the people that she loves. She doesn’t really have that many company. Her parents are gone. She doesn’t have her relative. Jimmy and Fowler are her own family left.”

Moonfall marks Yu’s first international film and one that includes working with Academy Award winner, Halle Berry. Not bad for a first international film. Yu loved working with Berry, but didn’t receive any Hollywood advice from the star. Instead, Yu received the best compliment from the iconic actress.

“She wanted to give me this bottle of wine as a gift, but she [asked] me… are you old enough to drink?'” Yu recalled. “I’m 30 years-old. Come on! Of course I’m old enough to drink!’ She was like ‘What?! I thought you were 17 or something.’ Thank you, [Halle Berry]. You look young too, thank you!”

As for memorable moments in the film, Yu’s character pokes fun of one of the white characters for having a Chinese tattoo on their arm. Similar to real life, Yu reflected, “Caucasians have no idea what their tattoos are about — the Chinese characters. They think it looks cool. Dragons and stuff. But, when you put two characters together they mean something different. That happens a lot. I think it’s fun.” After sharing some incorrect Chinese tattoos seen in public, Yu offered some advice to those who are considering a Chinese script tattoo.

“You better ask someone before you put it on your skin,” said Yu. “Ask your Asian friends who actually know Mandarin before you put it on.”

Watch the full interview below:

Moonfall opens in theaters everywhere on February 4.