Hugh Armitage, Ian Sandwell
Wed, 8 March 2023 at 3:26 pm GMT
Crazy Rich Asians‘s impact on cinema is still being felt, having debuted back in 2018 to stellar reviews and, more importantly to some, a whopping $240 million worldwide. With such success, it was almost a given that Warner Bros would seek to develop a sequel.
The source material is there, after all, as Crazy Rich Asians is based on a trilogy of novels by Kevin Kwan, and the second novel in the series is China Rich Girlfriend.
There were also rumblings of the the third novel in the trilogy, Rich People Problems, will be adapted for the big screen. However, the sequel itself has been languishing in the development abyss for some while.
The initial plan was to film the second and third movies back to back in 2020. However, some behind-the-scenes issues — and the pandemic — have led to delays. So, what’s going on with Crazy Rich Asians 2? Here’s everything you need to know about the sequel.
Crazy Rich Asians 2 potential release date: When is it being released?
At the time the sequel was announced, it was revealed that other commitments for the cast would hold up filming. In addition, co-writer Adele Lim (co-writer of Raya and the Last Dragon) left the sequel over a pay disparity.
The Hollywood Reporter wrote that Lim, a veteran TV writer, was being paid significantly less than co-writer Peter Chiarelli, a writer who gained significant acclaim for 2009’s The Proposal and was signed onto the project before John M Chu was even tapped to direct.
Negotiations over salary went on for five months, with Lim offered a salary closer to parity with Chiarelli, but only because Chiarelli volunteered to split his fee with her. Lim passed on the deal, saying: “Pete has been nothing but incredibly gracious, but what I make shouldn’t be dependent on the generosity of the white-guy writer.”
The most recent development (as of March 2022) was the announcement that Amy Wang will not only take over co-writing duties from Lim, but fully replace Chiarelli as well.
In 2018, Wang won the Young Director Award at the Cannes Lions festival for her short film Unnatural and also wrote an upcoming episode of Blindspotting.
Crazy Rich Asians 2 plot: What’s China Rich Girlfriend about?
The second book in Kevin Kwan’s trilogy follows the ongoing drama of Rachel Chu and Nick Young’s engagement. China Rich Girlfriend picks up two years after Crazy Rich Asians and given how closely the first film mirrored its source material, the sequel will likely stick close to the novel.
The events of the sequel were already seeded in Crazy Rich Asians, whose mid-credits scene implies a reunion between Gemma Chan’s Astrid and her former fiancé Charlie (played by Glee‘s Harry Shum Jr).
The story concerns Rachel’s reunion with her long-lost father, which introduces her to the world of Chinese billionaires whose wealth dwarfs that of her Singaporean would-be relatives. (The title riffs off Nick’s mother Eleanor’s exclamation: “These people aren’t just everyday rich with a few hundred million. They are China rich!”)
But the plot of the novel also focuses on the growing gulf between Astrid and her husband Michael, and the deepening feelings between Astrid and Charlie – despite both being married.
Throw in a dash of romance, heartbreak and revenge and you’re ready to go.
Crazy Rich Asians 2 cast: Who’s coming back?
While no cast has been confirmed for the sequel yet, it’d be a surprise if the main cast, including Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Gemma Chan, Awkwafina, Lisa Lu, Ken Jeong, Michelle Yeoh and Harry Shum Jr, aren’t back.
Golding is up for it, but remains unsure of when it’ll happen. He told Digital Spy: “They’ve got the two books that Kevin Kwan wrote still to come and they’re trying to find an angle to convert those from page to script to film. It’s a very complicated process because, visually, sometimes a novel doesn’t make as much sense as it would on the screen in a direct adaptation. So you have to really change it up to make it interesting.
“The other issue is that we’ve got the first one to compete with, everybody has a very high expectation. It’s not going to be as easy as the first one. It’s still a work in progress, for sure.”
Shum Jr is hopeful, though. As of January 2023, he told CinemaBlend: “A lot of people are really excited, especially with the wonderful work that the team behind CRA has been doing.
“I think at this point they’re writing it and trying to just get it right. So as far as I know now, I don’t know any concrete date of when it would go, but I’m just as excited as the audience to get this going.”
As for new faces, no-one has been confirmed yet, but there are many new characters to be cast. The two most tantalising are Carlton Bao, Rachel’s long-lost brother, and Colette Bing, a fashion blogger who only, and always, wears couture.
Colette is very spoiled by her father, and will certainly add another element of bling to the already high-fashion aesthetic of the movie.
There’s also Roxanne Ma, Colette’s personal assistant who’s fiercely loyal to her employer. Some are already speculating about who should be cast in these roles, with names like Lana Condor and Kelly Marie Tran tipped for Colette and Roxanne respectively.
Crazy Rich Asians 2 trailer: When’s the trailer being released?
The movie hasn’t even started filming yet, so a trailer is a long way off, unfortunately. Once filming is confirmed, we’ll be able to give a better guess of when the trailer will arrive.