Get Ready For A Lot More Awkwafina Goodness In Your Life Because The Crazy Rich Asians Star Is Getting Her Own TV Show
What a way to end what's been a huge 2018 for her.
From being one of the best parts in Crazy Rich Asians and Oceans 8 to being just the second Asian-American woman ever to host Saturday Night Live, Awkwafina has had a hell of a big year.
And it seems fitting that she’s going to end 2018 on the biggest high note yet: landing her very own TV show on Comedy Central.
In a new announcement from the popular channel behind some of pop-culture’s greatest things, like South Park, The Daily Show, and John Oliver, Awkwafina will headline her own self-titled TV show in 2019.
Over the course of 10 half-hour episodes, Awkwafina will depict the fictionalised story of the Crazy Rich Asians star’s early 20’s life living in Queens before fame came knocking on her door.
With SMILF‘s Karey Dornetto and Family Guy‘s Teresa Hsiao serving as co-creators alongside Awkwafina, and a cast that includes Jurassic Park‘s BD Wong (playing her dad) and Orange Is The New Black‘s Lori Tan Chinn (playing her grandmother), all signs point to Awkwafina being something hilariously special.
In true Awkwafina fashion, she had just one thing to say about the news:
Don’t worry, you won’t let us down. In fact, we have faith you’ll score six seasons and a movie. You heard it here first.
A TV Show Inspired By Crazy Rich Asians Is In Development From Rick And Morty Writer Jessica Gao And The Idea Alone Is Worth Six Seasons And A Movie
It was pitched as 'Lazy Rich Asians' and I can't imagine where that working title came from.
It’s been quite the big couple of months for Asians in Hollywood. First there was the release of Crazy Rich Asians (which scored critical acclaim and made enough money to immediately warrant a sequel), followed by Searching which stars the amazing John Cho, and of course, Netflix’s To All The Boys I’ve Loved which captured literally everyone’s attention.
With all that momentum brewing, it’s no surprise that Hollywood is keen to cash in as quick as possible and this has lead to the most fascinating news this week next to a literal boat of cocaine abandoned on the coast of Australia: Rick and Morty writer Jessica Gao is developing a new Chinese-American comedy TV project pitched as “Lazy Rich Asians”.
Can’t imagine where she got the inspiration for that working title.
Name similarities aside, the project sounds like oodles of fun. The currently-untitled single-camera series is about Janet Zhao, a first-gen Chinese-American woman who has a tough time dealing with her exhausting family. Things get flipped on its head though when Janet’s wealthy grandmother dies and she is named the sole inheritor of her fortune.
We don’t have much to go off of based on that short synopsis, but it’s hard to imagine the project being anything less than great based on the behind-the-scenes talent.
Gao will serve as writer and executive producer on the project, and she was most recently a writer on Rick and Morty. She is perhaps best known for penning that brilliant “Pickle Rick” episode, which recently won the Outstanding Animated Program Emmy, so there’s no doubt that she knows how to write a good script.
Executive producing alongside Gao are Brian Grazer, Francie Calfo, and Samie Kim Falvey, the latter of which is best known for working on other well-received sitcoms such as Fresh Off The Boat and Modern Family.
Now before we get too excited, know that this is just a script-plus-penalty deal, meaning it is not guaranteed that Gao’s script will be made into a show but she’ll be paid a big bag of money regardless of what happens.
But given how Gao was the one behind lines such as “I turned myself into a pickle, Morty” and “I don’t do magic, Morty, I do science. One takes brains, the other takes dark eye liner”, I think the odds of this project hitting the airwaves are pretty good.
But regardless of what happens, this is great news for the growing diversity movement that seems to be happening in Hollywood right now and giving someone as talented as Gao the opportunity to share her stories is a big step forward.
It’s been a while since this little call to action was used, but given Gao’s experience working with Dan Harmon, I can’t think of a better time to dust it off: Six seasons and a movie!
Some Test Audiences Hated Crazy Rich Asians' Ending But Asian-Americans Brilliantly Put Them In Their Place With A Simple 'F' You'
The ending may be cliched, but it's our goddamn cliche now.
Potential spoilers ahead! You’ve been warned! Stay back!
Crazy Rich Asians isn’t a perfect movie by any stretch of the imagination, but goddamn it was a delight from the opening seconds right down to its heartfelt climax.
However, it turns out that the ending wasn’t even the original ending planned for the movie.
For those who haven’t seen the movie, this is the last chance to avoid any possible spoilers.
Crazy Rich Asians ends on a sweet proposal scene in which Nick (Henry Golding) makes a Big Sweeping Romantic Gesture to his girlfriend Rachel (Constance Wu) just as she is boarding a plane back to New York City.
However, the script originally had Nick sitting next to Rachel and they just…talk. Unsurprisingly, the director Jon M. Chu decided that the ending needed more “energy” and improvised the proposal scene you see in the movie.
Even before Chu managed to pull off his last-minute ending switcharoo, the scene went through several drafts during the writing process. Most of these original ideas involved Nick doing some grand thing, like stopping all traffic while Rachel is on the way to the airport and buying out the entire flight Rachel is on. I guess the moral here is don’t half-ass a proposal, quadruple-ass it instead.
Even with the ending locked in place, the test screenings weren’t entirely positive as Chu recalls one audience member commenting how the proposal scene felt “derivative” and cliched.
However, the dissenters were quickly put in their place when a group of Asian-American women responded with the following now-immortal words:
F**k you. We have not seen this scene before. This is ours now. We get that moment of the big kiss, and the big proposal. Now I can replace all those images of romantic comedies with our people.
Couldn’t have said it better myself.
Look, the ending in Crazy Rich Asians may be cliched and derivative, but it is also something we’ve never seen in a mainstream Hollywood movie. This is something we can proudly own now and nothing can take it away from us, and all those dissenters can take a hike like Astrid’s seedy ex-husband. It’s a cliched climax but it’s our goddamn cliche.
With Crazy Rich Asians getting an inevitable sequel, I honestly hope we get more Asian versions of long-time Hollywood cliches because it’s about time we see those scenes performed with actors who aren’t white.
And feel free to throw in more Mandarin versions of Coldplay songs too.