When "Crazy Rich Asians" hits theaters next week it will already be making a bit of history. But supporters of the film want it to make more.
The romantic comedy starring "Fresh Off the Boat's" Constance Wu and Hollywood newcomer Henry Golding will be the first major studio movie since "The Joy Luck Club" 25 years ago to feature a predominately Asian cast.
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Digital media entrepreneur Bing Chen has seized on director Jon Chu's comment that "'Crazy Rich Asians' is more than just a movie, it's a movement" and is promoting the movie on social media with the #GoldOpen hashtag in the hopes of drawing a record box office.
"But EVERY MOVEMENT NEEDS ITS MAFIA," Chen tweeted. "That's why 100+ of us have bought out theatres to give #CrazyRichAsians a #GoldOpen. Join us and buy your tickets NOW for opening week on @Fandango.com."
Based on the best-selling novel of the same name by Kevin Kwan, the eagerly awaited film tells the story of a dashing college professor who takes his girlfriend (who is also a professor) home to meet his mega-wealthy family in Singapore.
Kwan told The Hollywood Reporter that he and Chu turned down a big money offer from Netflix and instead went with Warner Bros. so the movie would open in theaters.
"We needed this to be an old-fashioned cinematic experience, not for fans to sit in front of a TV and just press a button," Kwan said.
Warner Bros. is owned by CNN's parent company.
In his tweet Chen listed the names of more than 100 other people who have helped to buy out theaters for showings.
Attorney Anthony Nguyen tweeted about the significance of supporting the film.
"The idea of the impact of movies such as this one are simple," he wrote. "Hollywood should cast more Asians in films not for the novelty of being Asian for a stereotyped character, but because of the actor's talent itself."
"Crazy Rich Asians" opens nationwide August 15.
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