Crazy Rich Asians director Jon M. Chu is “proud” of screenwriter Adele Lim’s decision to walk away from the sequel after finding out her male co-writer was paid more.
Peter Chiarelli, who co-wrote the 2018 original with Lim, was allegedly set to be paid a “significantly higher” fee than her for the follow-up, with reports that he stood to make between $800,000 (£645,000) and $1 million (£810,000) for the job, while Lim was offered in the region of $110,000 (£90,000).
Now Chu, who will also helm the second movie, has broken his silence on the scandal, insisting that while he and studio bosses couldn’t reach an agreement with Lim about her salary, he remains proud of her for having stood up for what she believes in.
“When I discovered she was unhappy with the initial offer, the producers, myself and studio executives leapt into action to ensure we got to a place of parity between the two writers at a significant number,” he wrote in an open letter posted to his Twitter account. “It was both educational and powerful to hear all facets of the debate.
“Unfortunately, by the time we came up with several different ways to satisfy everyone’s needs, a lot of time had passed and she declined the offer. These things happen in negotiations, and I’m proud that she was able to stand up for her own measure of worth and walk away when she felt like she was being undervalued.”
Chu urged fans not to go after Chiarelli, calling him “a good man” and a “creative force”, and concluded his post by claiming he is still leaving the door open for Lim to re-join the Crazy Rich Asians series.
“The door is always open for Adele and if there’s another shot at making it work, I know we are all for it but that’s a personal and private conversation between ourselves,” the 39-year-old finished.
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