Crazy Rich Asians tops US box office and exceeds all expectations!
How did this happen? And what does this say about the influence of Chinese/Asian economic influence on a global scale?
NOTE: This article does not intend to generalize nor categorize any particular group of Asians. Please note that ‘China’ and ‘Chinese’ is used broadly to characterize an Asian phenomenon coming from Mainland China that is particularly impactful. Please also note that ‘Asians’ are a heterogeneous group consisting of very different cultures, values, and ideologies.
Perhaps Crazy Rich Asians isn’t a very good movie.
If you asked someone from China, the general story-line is “very typical” and “nothing special.” Crazy Rich Asians has a similar theme of many popular Chinese movies and sitcoms.
So what happened? How did this all-Asian cast perform so well in the US?
Do Chinese prefer to watch their Chinese-themed movies in English?
NO! Of course not!
If you are not part of any Chinese community, then you are probably not aware that Chinese social media extends to all Chinese living and studying abroad, and they started heavily promoting/imploring everyone to “watch this movie” in theaters to “help put Asian films on the map in Hollywood.”
In a nutshell, Chinese everywhere used this movie to give all Chinese FACE or ‘Mianzi’ to the rest of the world.
Go to WeChat Moments! Visit any WeChat Group! The feeds, posts, and discussions have gone viral!
It’s everywhere! … “Go watch Crazy Rich Asians!”
Even if you (as a Chinese person) weren’t interested in this movie, its actors, or this type of film; you felt compelled to join the movement to make your influence felt by outsiders, basically, to the American media.
And they succeeded!
Crazy Rich Asians is #1 at the U.S. box offices, and it exceeded all expectations.
If you think Crazy Rich Asians was just another great movie, then you have drastically underestimated the marketing power of a Chinese herd mentality, especially when coupled with nationalism and the FACE of 1.4 billion people.
Yes, it has an enormous economic impact!
Original article published here