30 Things We Learned From The Set Of ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ In Singapore

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On Henry Golding playing the male lead (and the controversy surrounding not casting a full-blooded Singaporean for the role):

“For every movie that I’ve worked on, we’ve always tried to cast the best person for the role and of course, if I could’ve found the best person for the role and he was Singaporean-Chinese, then that would’ve been great! Henry may be Eurasian but his place in the world isn’t as a white person by any stretch and ultimately, that charm, the charisma, the leading man quality– if we don’t get that right, we might get the politics right but still fail because there’s so much riding on this movie. It’s also challenging because of the accent, there are lots of amazing Asian actors in China but if English isn’t their first language then it wouldn’t work because Nick’s character studied in the UK and worked in New York. We looked at a lot of people and Henry popped as the one who embodied the character the most.” – Nina

“To me, I’ve struggled with that my entire life. I’ve never felt welcome in the UK and I’ve also never fully felt welcome in Asia, and that’s something most Eurasians (not only me) have to deal with. But then there comes the argument of how Asian do you have to be to be Asian? At the end of the day, we’ve been struggling this long to make a film like this so we shouldn’t be nit-picking the fact that half the cast are mixed-Asians. We know we can’t make everybody happy, but what we can do is bring our A-game to the table and make people proud.” – Henry Golding (Malaysian-British TV Host who scored the coveted role of Nicholas Young)

“This whole hapa (a Hawaiian term used to describe someone who is mixed raced) thing with Henry, I don’t have that experience, but as an actress, I try to empathise what it must feel like for him to have somebody tell you that you don’t belong and I would probably imagine that to be very hurtful.” – Constance

Henry Golding as Nick Young
Photo: Sanja Bucko/Warner Bros. Pictures

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