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Before They Were Cast As Crazy Rich Asians

The excitement is palpable among fans of Kevin Kwan as the opening day for this month's most anticipated film, Crazy Rich Asians, draws closer. Last year, the buzz was all about who will be cast as our favorite characters—but now that everyone's up to speed (and Filipinos are pumped to see not one, but two Pinoys gracing the cast sheet) everyone's thirsting to know even more about the all-Asian ensemble. Some of them you may find familiar, having appeared here and there on television and movies before the Crazy Rich Asians script landed on their lap. Can’t quite recall where you saw which actor last? Here, we line up the cast and recall their previous screen incarnations.


Michelle Yeoh plays Eleanor Young in the film, a hard-to-please mother and the only one not charmed by her son’s significant other.



Michelle isn't exactly an unfamiliar face in Hollywood. She has graced movies such as Tomorrow Never Dies (yes, she was a Bond girl!), Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, Kung Fu Panda 2, Memoirs of a Geisha (who could forget her as the cunning and beautiful Mameha, teaching Zhang Ziyi’s Sayuri the tricks of the geisha trade), and most recently Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.



In Crazy Rich Asians, Constance Wu plays Rachel Chu, a simple Chinese-American girl who stole the heart of a very rich bachelor.



You probably know her best as the pragmatic Chinese-American wife of Louis and tough-loving mother to Eddie, Emery and Evan Huang on Fresh Off the Boat. She's also made a few appearances on TV before FOTB in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and Royal Pains.



Henry Golding plays Nick, Singapore’s most eligible bachelor—until Rachel came along.



You might be surprised to know that Henry is actually a film virgin in that CRA is his first acting credit. But if you’re the type who likes to watch travel programs, you might have caught him doing hosting chores in the BBC’s The Travel Show. Henry is also a professional hairdresser. No wonder hes got an ever-spectacular 'do.


Awkwafina plays Peik Lin, Rachel’s best friend and confidante who helps her navigate the wealthy Singapore lifestyle.



Awkwafina had been cast alongside Hollywood hunk Zac Efron in Neighbors 2: Sorority Uprising and more recently shared screen-time with the goddesses of Ocean’s 8, playing Constance, the scene-stealing bonnet-wearing street hustler.



Gemma Chan is Astrid Leong, Nick’s closest cousin who is hailed as a fashion goddess.



You know Gemma from the TV series Humans, but you might also remember her from Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them where she played Madam Ya Zhou, a delegate to the International Confederation of Wizards.




Ken Jeong plays Goh Wye Mun, Peik Lin’s nouveau riche father.



Of course you know this guy as Mr. Chow from The Hangover series. But even before that, he's done a lot of movies such as Pineapple Express, Couples Retreat, and Knocked Up among an extensive list of other cameos. He’s also made memorable appearances in Entourage and Fresh Off the Boat.




Jimmy Yang plays Bernard Tai in the film—Nick and Colin’s friend who is spoiled rotten by his corrupt politico father.



Appearing in mostly TV shows, you might have seen him in New Girl, 2 Broke Girls, and Silicon Valley.



Chris Pang plays Colin Khoo, Nick’s bestfriend who is engaged to Araminta Lee. Their wedding is what brings Nick and Rachel to Singapore.



Crazy Rich Asians isn't his first time to work with Michelle Yeoh and Harry Shum Jr. as they were all also part of the cast of Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny back in 2016.



Sonoya Mizuno (Araminta Lee, Singaporean fashion icon engaged to Colin Khoo)



Sonoya Mizuno is also no stranger to the Hollywood scene as she has appeared in movies such as multi-awarded La La Land, Ex Machina, and Annihilation. In Ex Machina, she played an AI called Kyoko, alongside Alicia Vikander’s who played Ava.



Ronny Chieng plays Edison Cheng, Nick’s cousin who’s dead set on projecting a picture-perfect life



Ronny stars on his own sitcom entitled Ronnie Cheng: International Student and was also a correspondent in The Daily Show



Fiona Xie plays Kitty Pong, a gold-digging opera star dating a member of the Cheng family.



Fiona is a Singaporean actress known for her role in IP Man Fist of Dragon and The Golden Couple, as well as Sayang sayang, a TV Show.




Remy Hii plays Alistair Cheng, the younger brother of Eddie and boyfriend of soap star Kitty Pong.



L I N E U P Photo by the incredible @russelwong ?? Crazy Rich Asians 15th August 18

A post shared by Remy Hii (@remyhii) on


He's mostly done TV shows including Marco Polo and Neighbours, but you'd be surprised to know that he co-directed and co-starred in a short film entitled Maligayang Pasko, a movie about two lonely people meeting on Christmas Day.



Harry Shum Jr.  plays Charlie Wu, the billionaire ex-fiance of Astrid Leong



He is best known for his role in the hit series Glee as Mike Chang. Despite the show being a musical, Mike isn’t in the cast because of his vocal chords but his dancing prowess. In real life, his serious talent in dancing has landed him roles in You Got Served, Step Up 2: The Streets, Center Stage: Turn it Up, and Step Up 3D.




Nico Santos plays Oliver T'sien, Nick’s cousin who works for auction house Christie’s in London.



Nico was born in Manila, but moved to the United States when he was 16. He's done TV shows such as 2 Broke Girls and Superstore as Mateo Liwanag, the highly competitive gay staff worker.



Photos from IMDB