Brian Tee was born in Okinawa, Japan, to a Japanese father and a Korean mother. He moved to Hacienda Heights, California, when he was two. Tee was a star football captain at his Glen A. High School. During high school, he worked at Blackjack Pizza, where fellow Hacienda resident Fergie frequently visited. After completing his training in Dramatic Arts at the University of California in Berkeley, he was ready to embark on his acting career. It began in 2000, mostly with work in television, on series such as The Pretender (1996), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997) and Family Law (1999). Brian began his film work with a short called Remember Pearl Harbor (2002). Next he appeared in We Were Soldiers (2002), followed that same year with a more high profile movie, the comedic spy flick Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002). He also appeared in a brief role as a radio corporal in the Sci-Fi video sequel Starship Troopers 2: Hero of the Federation (2004).
Tee became known for his starring role as the lead villain "DK, the Drift King," in Universal Pictures' The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006), directed by Justin Lin. Tee gave a comedic performance in Lin's next film, Finishing the Game: The Search for a New Bruce Lee (2007), as the Vietnam Vet "Mac Chang." He appeared with his Starship Troopers 2 cast mate Jason-Shane Scott in the survival thriller Deadland (2009).
Between films, Tee's television credits expanded to include work on The Unit (2006), Without a Trace (2002), Grey's Anatomy (2005), CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (2000) and Burn Notice (2007). He was a series regular playing "EMT Eddie Choi" in "Crash", a Starz TV series based on the Academy Award winning film. He also recurred on NBC's Grimm, playing the assassin "Akira Kimura."
Tee returned to the stage to rave reviews for his lead performance in Snow Falling on Cedars, at the prestigious Hartford Stage. He had a role in 20th Century FOX's blockbuster The Wolverine (2013), with Hugh Jackman and directed by James Mangold. Tee also starred in the highly anticipated Season 2 of "Mortal Kombat: Legacy", where he took on the role of the legendary iconic character "Liu Kang".