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Crazy Real Slaysians

Posted on September 10 2018

Crazy Real Slaysians

Warner Bros.’ “Crazy Rich Asians,” is the first studio movie in a quarter of a century to feature an almost entirely Asian-American cast.  It achieved the best opening for a romantic comedy in years. The success of the movie proved that true diversity matters.

"As a result, “Crazy Rich Asians” was seen as a watershed moment by many Asian-Americans, echoing the emotional manner in which African-Americans responded in February to “Black Panther,” which was rooted in black culture," states the New York Times.

In the US 38% of ticket buyers were Asian and 68% of the audience was female.  Read below our interviews of people who finally saw their stories being told on the big screen.

CATHERINE LIN - CRAZY REAL SLAYSIANS - CRAZY REAL ASIANS

Catherine Lin

"Growing up in South Africa I was the only Asian in my town, and boy was I painfully aware of it. Something I remember vividly is being paired up with a pen pal from a different school, someone who had no idea what I looked like. For once I felt confident because I could hide behind pen and paper. I could pretend to be white. Do you have blue eyes? The girl would ask, and I would say yes. Do you have blonde hair? And again I would say yes.

Something else I remember is going with friends to public events. Everytime, without fail someone would yell "Ching chong!" Or "shushiiii". Being so young I was unequipped to defend myself so I would run. I wish I could tell my younger self how silly their words were, and how much bigger and better life would be beyond them. I wouldn't say I've mastered the craft of self confidence, but I've never been more proud to be Asian African. What I do know is that it is a gift to belong to both cultures, and although things started with a young girl lost in-between the two, I think I'm finally forging my own path; and I couldn't be more excited about it."

 KAGUYA - CRAZY REAL SLAYSIANS - CRAZY REAL ASIANS

Kaguya

"Being Asian and born in America has always been challenging in knowing where I belong. How should I act around certain types of folks? How being an Asian American I am still considered not Asian enough and not American enough. I am considered petite curve, plus size, overweight and fat. Asian culture is extremely fatphobic lowering every child’s self-esteem even at a very young age, basically resulting to extreme diets and wanting plastic surgery. 
I grew up with these types of Asians in church and in Saturday Korean School (which was in a church). I was always not “normal” enough. But that should never prevent anyone from pursuing, creating, doing, wearing what they want! Breaking the stereotype is so important as well as educating folks around you."
 JOSEPHINE HUANG - CRAZY REAL SLAYSIANS - CRAZY REAL ASIANS 

Josephine Huang

"My dad jokingly calls me the “banana” of the family. Yellow on the outside, white on the inside. My friends growing up (in a predominantly white, wealthy neighborhood) lovingly label me the “whitest” Asian girl you’ve ever met. In my reality, I constantly struggled because I never could quite fit in anywhere. Being a first generation Asian American has always been a balancing act. Cultural expectation vs reality. Chinese girl vs American girl. How I’m supposed to talk, what I can say or think or do depending on who I happen to be surrounded by at the time. My cultural identity is constantly in a state of flux and confusion. Without representation in the media, role models to look up to, examples of my own story being told, it’s taken a long time to understand for myself where my place is in all this and begin to challenge it and grow to become that person myself. 
I grew up feeling like I was not enough. Not skinny enough. Not pretty enough. Not outgoing, funny, tall, or blonde enough. Not enough to be represented in the tv programs I binged, the movies I acted out in my room, the musicals I sang constantly. All I ever wanted was to be an actress so I could become somebody else...someone smart but quirky, strong but vulnerable, taking on challenges and coming out a beautiful shining star. So I did. Much to the dismay of my Chinese family, I went to acting school, I moved to NYC, and never looked back. But that layered, real, girl I dreamed of playing never went to someone who looks like me. A decade working in this industry, and I still constantly felt like and been told by the media that I am not enough (except to play the assistant, the lab tech, the random friend.) Times are finally changing but it’s been a long journey. Watching Crazy Rich Asians was emotional. Seeing a screen filled with people who look like me, talk like me, challenge their stereotypes and the pressure of cultural expectations...it hit home. I felt seen for the first time. It gave me hope that my childhood dream can actually be a reality, because finally here is proof that it can really happen."
VIN KRIDAKORN - CRAZY REAL SLAYSIANS - CRAZY REAL ASIANS

 

Vin Kridakorn

"I didn't expect Crazy Rich Asians to effect me as much as it did.  It felt so surreal to see characters that look like me in a big budget Hollywood film.  No more are we just the side kick, the perpetual foreigner, the ninja, the nerd.  We can now be the main characters - in our own story.  I was overwhelmed with joy and this is just the beginning."

LILY CHEN - CRAZY REAL SLAYSIANS - CRAZY RICH ASIANS

Lily Chen

"Recently my father said to me "Again, you are not so smart." Growing up he never uttered the words, "I am proud of you."  Asian parents can be harsh, but they do it out of love.  

Growing up Asian American I am constantly struggling to breakdown the stereotypes of being Asian, while still respecting the Asian traditions of my family.  I was raised to play it safe, get a stable respectable job, and always follow the rules.  As an entrepreneur with a lingerie company, I break all the expectations of my father.   

I cried when I saw Crazy Real Asians because I finally saw people who looked like me, people with stories like mine absolutely crushing it on the big screen.  My heart filled with pride that it never felt before.  The movie proved that we could all find a way, no matter which path we choose."

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