Ken Jeong married a Ho, and he's not trying to hide it.
Ken Jeong arrives at the LA Premiere of "Pain and Gain" at the TCL Theatre on Monday, April 22, 2013 in Hollywood, Calif. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)
Producer/actor Ken Jeong poses for a portrait to promote the film, "Advantageous", at the Eddie Bauer Adventure House during the Sundance Film Festival on Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015, in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Victoria Will/Invision/AP)
Tran Jeong, Justin Bartha and Ken Jeong arrive at Warner Bros. Premiere of The Hangover: Part III, on Monday, May, 20, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Eric Charbonneau/Invision for Warner Bros./AP Images)
Actor Ken Jeong tries to rally the crowd during Game 5 of the National League baseball championship series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Los Angeles Dodgers Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Bradley Cooper, Ken Jeong and Ed Helms arrive at Warner Bros. Premiere of The Hangover: Part III, on Monday, May, 20, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Eric Charbonneau/Invision for Warner Bros./AP Images)
Actor Ken Jeong visits New.Music.Live. at the MuchMusic Headquarters to promote The Hangover Part III on Wednesday, May 15, 2013, in Toronto. (Photo by Arthur Mola/Invision/AP)
This film publicity image released by Warner Bros. Pictures shows Ken Jeong as Mr. Chow in a scene from "The Hangover Part III." (AP Photo/Warner Bros. Pictures)
Ken Jeong of "The Hangover Part 3" poses for a portrait at Caesars Palace on Sunday, May 12, 2013 in Las Vegas. (Photo by Eric Jamison/Invision/AP)
Justin Bartha and Ken Jeong arrive at Warner Bros. Premiere of The Hangover: Part III, on Monday, May, 20, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Eric Charbonneau/Invision for Warner Bros./AP Images)
Ken Jeong arrives at the premiere of "The Hangover" on Tuesday June 2, 2009, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
Ken Jeong, a cast member in "The Hangover Part II," poses with his wife Tran at the premiere of the film, Thursday, May 19, 2011, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
Actor Ken Jeong arrives at the premiere of "Due Date" in Los Angeles on Thursday, Oct. 28, 2010. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
Ken Jeong and Tran Ho arrive at the Independent Spirit Awards on Friday, March 5, 2010, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
Ken Jeong performs at the MTV Movie Awards in Universal City, Calif., on Sunday, June 6, 2010. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
Actor, comedian and physician Ken Jeong, MD, poses for a portrait, Monday, May 16, 2011, in Beverly Hills, Calif. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
Ed Helms, left, and Ken Jeong, right, cast members in "The Hangover Part II," pose with fellow cast member "Crystal the Monkey" at the premiere of the film, Thursday, May 19, 2011, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
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NEW YORK (AP) -- Actor Ken Jeong says that much of the inspiration for his memorably angry Mr. Chow character in "The Hangover" movie was a reaction to his wife's fight against breast cancer at the time.
His small role in the 2009 comedy, which included leaping naked out of a car trunk to attack someone, was so wildly over-the-top that he won an MTV Movie Award for it.
Even after earning the role, however, he wasn't going to take it. He explained in a short film to accompany the upcoming PBS documentary, "Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies," that he was caring for his wife, Tran Ho, and their one-year-old twins as she was undergoing chemotherapy.
"Tran encouraged me to do it," Jeong said in an interview. "She thought I was suffering from caregiver burnout."
He channeled his rage at his wife's plight into the character, he said. One monologue that wound up being cut from the film but used as a DVD outtake turned into a pure rant that Jeong sees now he was doing to unburden himself.
Jeong, who is Korean, slipped in some dialogue in Vietnamese purely as an inside joke for his wife, who is Vietnamese.
He accepted his MTV award with an emotional speech just after the couple learned that she was cancer-free for two years. Before he could talk about it to the media following the show, he slipped into an alley behind the theater and broke down crying.
Shortly after that, the Stand Up to Cancer organization asked him to do some volunteer work, and that included the online film that is being used to promote the PBS project, a film by Barak Goodman and Ken Burns that brings to life the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Siddhartha Mukherjee. The three-part film airs on PBS March 30, 31 and April 1
Tran Ho has now been cancer-free for six years.
"She's just a pillar of strength," Jeong said. "She's my biggest inspiration because she handled it with such grace and strength and class. Even if I wasn't married to her, I'd be in awe of her."