‘Crazy Rich Asians’ writer Adele Lim says she’s not doing sequel due to pay gap with white male co-writer
One of the writers of the smash-hit movie “Crazy Rich Asians” says she’s not doing the sequel due to a large gap in pay between herself and her white male co-writer.
Adele Lim, who is of Chinese Malaysian descent, left the project over a pay disparity, a rep for the writer confirmed to the Daily News.
“Being evaluated that way can’t help but make you feel that is how they view my contributions,” Lim told The Hollywood Reporter.
She did not disclose how much they were offered. Sources told THR that Lim was initially offered $110,000 to return for the next installment of the romantic-comedy franchise, while Peter Chiarelli, whom she worked with on the first movie, was offered somewhere in the $800,000 to $1 million range.
“Crazy Rich Asians” was the first feature film that Lim wrote a screenplay for but had written for a number of TV series over the years. Chiarelli had written for multiple movies, including “Now You See Me 2,” before joining the first “Crazy Rich Asians." Higher-ups for Warner Bros. reportedly told Lim’s team that the offers were in line with the standard due to their experience levels.
A rep for the studio did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
After Lim left, Chiarelli offered to split his fee with her, but she declined to come back, according to THR.
“Pete has been nothing but incredibly gracious, but what I make shouldn’t be dependent on the generosity of the white-guy writer,” Lim told the outlet. “If I couldn’t get pay equity after CRA, I can’t imagine what it would be like for anyone else, given that the standard for how much you’re worth is having established quotes from previous movies, which women of color would never have been (hired for). There’s no realistic way to achieve true equity that way.”
“Crazy Rich Asians" grossed $238.5 million after its release last summer. The movie was directed by Jon M. Chu and starred Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Michelle Yeoh and Gemma Chan.