Oh did you think I wasn’t going to be mentioning Crazy Rich Asians this week? There was no CRA content yesterday because I’m hitting you up with so much of it today, tomorrow, Thursday, and Friday for its five-day opening weekend. Not only because, as director Jon M Chu said, there are so many other projects featuring diverse casts that are depending on CRA to do well so that they can be greenlit, but because, quite simply, it’s a fun summer movie that just happens to star Asians.
Box office projections still have CRA opening at around $20 million but, as I’ve been saying, I think we can do better. I tweeted the other day that Crazy Rich Asians was sitting at a 100% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. It’s now come down to 97%, so slightly less than perfect but also really, really perfect. Because many of us growing up with immigrant Asian parents know what the parental response would be if you brought home a test score of 97%: “what happened to the other 3%?”
As Jiayang Fan wrote of the film in her beautiful essay for The New Yorker:
In this sense, we can’t help but become emblematic of another stereotype: the overbearing Asian parent, demanding the best of our creation, endowing it with our greatest hopes and, like any good tiger mom, our fiercest criticisms.
After all, if we don’t ace every test and hit every mark, how will we ever prove our worth?
Tonight, Michelle Yeoh, Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Awkwafina, and Kevin Kwan will be in New York for a TimesTalk Q&A. Of all the cast members, I feel like it’s Henry Golding who’s been out there the most. Not a household name, yet. But you’ll get it as soon as you see Crazy Rich Asians, why he was booked and shot two other films, including A Simple Favour with Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively, even before the movie came out. As you know, he’s not the only CRA breakout. Awkwafina is also rising. And Captain Marvel is Gemma Chan’s CRA follow-up. This is what CRA has already done for so many members of the team: increased visibility within the industry. Hopefully more of that to come.
Yours in gossip,