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IndieWire Honors Video: Constance Wu Shares How ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ and ‘Fresh Off the Boat’ Can Lead to More New Stories

From the importance of voting to on-screen representation, the actress says, "It's not about who has a more important voice, it's about understanding each other."

Constance Wu at the IndieWire Honors 2018 at No Name on November 1, 2018 in Los Angeles.

Constance Wu at the IndieWire Honors 2018 at No Name on November 1, 2018 in Los Angeles.

Todd Williamson for Variety

On November 1, the 2018 IndieWire Honors ceremony celebrated eight filmmakers and actors for their achievement in creative independence. We’re showcasing their work with new interviews conducted right before they accepted their awards at the event.

2018 has been a year to remember for Constance Wu, but she doesn’t want it to end when the calendar turns.

“Fresh Off the Boat,” a mainstay in the ABC comedy lineup in which Wu stars alongside Randall Park, passed a gigantic milestone, reaching the magic number of episodes to enter syndication. Add that to her starring role in the runaway box office smash “Crazy Rich Asians” and it’s been quite a barrier-breaking past few months.

Despite being a central part of both those landmark projects for Asian representation on screen in American entertainment, Wu doesn’t see being part of them as a burden.

“I try to think of it not as pressure, but as an extraordinary gift. An opportunity that I can utilize now. If you’re lucky, use your luck for things that matter to you,” Wu told IndieWire.

Wu also echoed a sentiment that many audiences have been calling for over the past few years: The best way to ensure that these achievements aren’t blips on the industry radar is to keep making more TV shows and movies like these.

“‘Crazy Rich Asians’ was one movie and one story. Obviously, it can’t represent such a multifaceted group of people,” Wu said. “So more stories that tell different perspectives of different ages, experiences, abilities, sexualities, all of those things, but through an Asian-American lens. So everybody out there who’s a kid looking for their story can find something that they identify with.”

In the meantime, “Fresh Off the Boat” Season 5 is next on her horizon, but she’ll keep driving home the message that voices come from more places than on screen. She wants people to vote, even those whose political beliefs don’t align with her own.

“We’re so lucky to be here, so let’s take advantage of that,” Wu said. “We should be a collective country. It’s not about who has a more important voice, it’s about understanding each other.”

Watch the full interview with IndieWire Executive Editor Michael Schneider below:

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