Crazy Rich Asians Earns Its Title With a Lucrative Opening Weekend
Crazy Rich Asians is living up to its name with an explosive opening at the box office. The lavish and high energy romantic comedy made it rain this weekend to the tune of $25.2 million in North America.
As if we needed any more evidence that audiences crave representation, Crazy Rich Asians had the biggest box office opening for a PG-13 romantic comedy since Think Like a Man. The 2012 comedy also featured a non-white cast and cashed in $33 million in the first 3 days.
Based on the novel by Kevin Kwan, both Kwan and director Jon Chu told THR they turned down a Netflix sized payday to gamble the release in theaters. The filmmakers hoped that the film could crack a glass ceiling of Asian-American representation in a studio film that hadn’t been tapped since The Joy Luck Club 25 years ago. “We were gifted this position to make a decision no one else can make, which is turning down the big payday for rolling the dice [on the box office] — but being invited to the big party, which is people paying money to go see us,” Kwan said before the film opened. Now, he can breathe a sigh of relief that the film was a success.
“This shows — once again, with emphasis — that true diversity matters,” Crazy Rich Asians producer Brad Simpson wrote to the New York Times. “Audiences are tired of seeing the same stories with the same characters. And we have to give people a reason to get off their couch or devices. We have to give them something different.”
However, Netflix did still take a swing at that glass ceiling this weekend, even if Crazy Rich Asians passed on their offer. Audiences who did stay home this weekend were still turning to Asian-American stories. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, based on Jenny Han’s young adult novel, went viral. The charming story stars Asian-American actress Lana Condor (X-Men Apocalypse). While the ensemble cast has less Asian representation than Crazy Rich Asians, it still brings Asian voices into the spotlight.
Crazy Rich Asians is in theaters now and To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is available to stream on Netflix.
Featured Image: CONSTANCE WU as Rachel in Warner Bros. Pictures’ and SK Global Entertainment’s contemporary romantic comedy “CRAZY RICH ASIANS,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release. Credit: Sanja Bucko