“The Gifted” actress Jamie Chung apologized for comments she made criticizing the casting in “Crazy Rich Asians” in an interview earlier this year.
The actress tweeted at actor Henry Golding Friday, who will play main character Nick Young in the film, for remarks she made in an April interview with CBS. Chung had called the news that a half-Asian actor was cast as the lead “bulls**t.”
“I am sincerely sorry about the ignorant comment I made earlier in the year. Hope to meet you one day so I can say this in person,” she wrote on Twitter to the actor. “I am truly looking forward to the movie and hope it’s a huge success so that Hollywood and the powers that be will realize that we the audience are hungry to see more shows and movies that truly represent our diverse and colorful society.”
Golding, whose father is British and whose mother is from the Iban tribe in Sarawak, Malaysia, responded shortly afterward, and it appears the two have patched things up.
“Sometimes interviews can be taken out of context, I’m sure such was the case,” he wrote. “No apology needed, fan of your work :)”
The actress is among several who criticized the movie’s casting. Mass Appeal’s Kristen Yoonsoo Kim responded to the news with a piece titled “We’d Love To See A Full Asian Lead For Once,” writing that there are “levels to this whitewashing, and it’s not always a white person.”
Golding has mentioned in several interviews that the criticisms stung, particularly as a person who had always identified strongly with his Asian heritage.
“I’ve lived 16, 17 years of my life in Asia, and that’s most of my life,” Golding told Entertainment Weekly in November. “I was born in Asia, I’ve lived cultures that are synonymous with Asian culture, but it’s still not Asian enough for some people. Where are the boundaries? Where are the lines drawn for saying that you cannot play this character because you’re not fully Asian?”
As Nancy Wang Yuen, chair of Biola University’s sociology department, previously told HuffPost, the criticisms that Golding is not “Asian enough” erase Golding’s Asian ancestry.
And with few roles going to people of color, including those of mixed descent, in the first place, Golding’s casting as a half-Asian actor should be embraced.
“Crazy Rich Asians” hits theaters Aug. 17, 2018.