Saturday, October 10, 2015

My surname is Ng

I was watching the movie Aloha but I did not finish it. It wasn't a very compelling movie.

I know many did not favour the casting of a Caucasian actress for the part-Asian character Allison Ng. And the writer-director Cameron Crowe had to apologise for it.

I too felt it was a miscast. Chloe Bennet would have been perfect in that role, wouldn't she?

But what irritated me more was how they pronounced Ng, which is my surname.

It is transliterated from the Cantonese 吳 (wú, in Mandarin) and it should be pronounced vowelless. The Cantonese pronunciation is in fact vowelless. It is not ing as in "ring" or eng "engage". The closest if you need to include a vowel is ung with the u as in "urn" or "umm".

I know the non-Chinese do have a problem pronouncing my name, which I'm ok about it. They just need to know better in a movie production.



  1. Thanks for the heads up Pearlie. Have not seen the movie and may not even when it is on tv.

    A guy with a surname of Ng once worked for me. He pronounced it Win.

    Thanks for helping with the correct pronunciation.

  2. If I'm not mistaken, your staff could be a Vietnamese for his surname to be pronounced as Win.

  3. Thanks for that insight Pearlie.