Kal Penn on Why ‘Sunnyside’ Is the Perfect Setting for His Immigrant-Focused Sitcom

  • Variety
Kal Penn on Why ‘Sunnyside’ Is the Perfect Setting for His Immigrant-Focused Sitcom
Five years ago, through the randomness of searching for an affordable apartment in New York City, I landed in a patch of western Queens known as Sunnyside.

I fell hard for the neighborhood’s Old World charms. Sturdy prewar brick apartment buildings with 10-foot ceilings and parquet floors. Bodegas and bars on every corner. Restaurants and specialty markets to die for. A homey community feel with plenty of kids and dogs running around and old-timers holding court on the plazas under the elevated 7 train stations along Queens Boulevard.

The single best thing about living here is the array of ethnicities and cultures that are packed into roughly 10 square blocks. An area that was once largely Irish and Italian now is home to immigrants from South Asia to South America and most points in between. There’s an undeniable energy that comes from being surrounded by so many languages, faiths and cultural traditions.
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