Crazy Rich Asians star Constance Wu said it was “important” the film was made and hopes it will inspire a new generation to “tell their own stories”.
The movie – based on the book of the same name by Kevin Kwan – follows Wu’s character as she travels to Singapore to meet her partner’s family before finding out they are incredibly wealthy.
It is the first major Hollywood production to feature an all-Asian cast in 25 years and has proven to be a box office smash in the US, earning 25 million dollars (£19.3m) in its opening weekend following its release earlier this month.
Critics have praised its diversity and Wu hopes it will influence a new generation.
She told the Press Association: “Of course it was (important to make the film). Asians have not seen themselves represented in American cinema for over 25 years so it’s about time, it’s past time.
“I think it’s going to make some of the younger generation fired up to tell their own stories. And now, with the way media is, very digital, you can do that. That’s what I think is going to happen and I am excited about that.”
Wu was born into an American-Taiwanese family and is also known for starring in the sitcom Fresh Off The Boat.
In Crazy Rich Asians, she plays Rachel Chu, an economics professor at New York University whose long-term boyfriend Nick Young, played by Henry Golding, belongs to a hyper-wealthy family in Singapore.
Wu said the #MeToo movement had changed the way in which romantic comedies are made.
She said: “For sure. It’s making people think about and redefine what it means to be a man. And I think Henry was perfect for this because he is the ultimate gentleman but he is so masculine. If you have seen him with his shirt off he is so sexy. And he is just confident to do his first movie and kill it and do a great job.”
Also starring Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’s Michelle Yeoh, Humans star Gemma Chan, Awkwafina, who was recently seen in Ocean’s 8, and Glee actor Harry Shum Jr, it features the first all-Asian cast since 1993’s The Joy Luck Club.
Yeoh said it was a “necessity” the film was made but hoped a mass audience will enjoy the film, not just viewers of Asian descent.
She added: “It’s a beautiful love story about family and I think everyone can identify with it, regardless of where you come from.”
It has been revealed that a sequel to Crazy Rich Asians is already in development at Warner Bros.
Crazy Rich Asians will be released in the UK on September 14.