Five years after readers fell in love with heart-throb heir Nick Young, couture-clad fashionista Astrid Leong and a host of other characters in Kevin Kwan’s first novel, Crazy Rich Asians, Warner Bros is bringing the romantic comedy to the big screen. With its irresistible mix of star-crossed lovers, family dramas and depictions of ostentatious wealth (think spas on private jets and plastic surgeons for pet fish), it’s no surprise that fans can’t wait to see the story brought to life on film.
Kwan has previously admitted that he combed the pages of Asia’s Tatler titles for inspiration when writing the novel, so regular readers may find some characters reminiscent of the high-society personalities profiled in these pages—or possibly even themselves. Who was the inspiration behind domineering matriarch Eleanor Young (played in the film by Michelle Yeoh)? Did a real-life celebrity provide the idea for the character of Kitty Pong, a golddigging social climber who manages to leave behind her lacklustre career as a soap-opera star and marry into one of Asia’s wealthiest families? Our lips are sealed, but a quick look through our pages may reveal some answers.
Despite its focus on glitz and glamour, the film has already inspired several weighty think pieces by leading news organisations because it’s the first Hollywood film in more than a decade to feature an all-Asian cast (the most recent, Memoirs of a Geisha, came out in 2005). A fun-filled romcom that’s also a step forward for diversity in the film industry? That’s a win. Crazy Rich Asians opens in cinemas across Asia this month.
See also: 5 Films To Watch This August 2018