Unforgettable Male Breakout of the Year: Ross Butler

Thanks to his dedication to break free from Hollywood typecasting, Ross Butler is making his way as one of Hollywood’s next generation of leading actors.

The actor, who will be honored as Male Breakout of the Year at Kore Asian Media’s 16th Unforgettable gala, presented by BMW, on Dec. 9, 2017, is best known for playing basketball jock Zach Dempsey in Netflix’s high school mystery-drama “13 Reasons Why.” The series was one of the most watched and most tweeted shows for Netflix this year.

Butler, who was born in Singapore and raised in Virginia by his Chinese-Malaysian mother, left his college chemical engineering degree behind to move to Los Angeles to pursue acting at the age of 20.

Butler’s momentum began when he booked his first guest role on TNT’s “Major Crimes” in 2013 as Ian Yorita, an Asian American teen and drug dealer. He continued to land roles on Disney Channel’s “Teen Beach 2,” Lifetime’s “Perfect High,” MTV’s popular cult series “Teen Wolf” and most notably in Disney Channel’s “K.C. Undercover” opposite Zendaya. His breakthrough came when he landed the role of the jock Reggie Mantle on The CW hit series “Riverdale.”

His fan base now numbers 2.4 million on Instagram and more than 450,000 on Twitter, where he shares his love of dogs, food and playing music.

Next year, he will continue his role as Zach Dempsey on “13 Reasons Why.”

As the presenting partner of the 2017 Unforgettable Gala, BMW of North America continues its longstanding commitment to celebrating diversity. The gala is also supported by gold sponsors Private Internet Access and Pechanga Resort & Casino, along with silver sponsor M&L Hong Foundation. A teaser for the film “Beats of Paradise,” which showcases the rhythmic beauty of gamelan, or traditional Indonesian music, and its influence on Balinese culture, directed by Livi Zheng and executive produced by Julia Gouw, will officially launch at the Unforgettable Gala.