ASIAN VOICES

Constance Wu Reveals Significance Behind Her Yellow Oscars Dress

The "Crazy Rich Asians" star's outfit came with a deeper meaning.

In a bold yellow dress, Constance Wu was hard to miss at Sunday’s Oscars

But her getup wasn’t just a strong fashion statement ― there was a deeper meaning behind the gown. 

The “Crazy Rich Asians” star took to Instagram on Monday and revealed that she drew inspiration from director Jon M. Chu’s letter to Coldplay, requesting to license the rights for the single “Yellow” for the movie. Chu, like Wu, aimed to reclaim the word yellow ― a color historically associated with Asians and often used to describe the racial group derogatorily.

In her Instagram post, Wu shared a condensed version of Chu’s letter to the band. 

“My whole life I’ve had a complicated relationship with the color yellow. From being called the word in a derogatory way throughout grade school, to watching movies where they called cowardly people yellow, it’s always had a negative connotation in my life,” Chu had written.  ”[Until] I heard your song. ... It was an incredible image of attraction and aspiration that it made me rethink my own self image... It immediately became an anthem for me and my friends and gave us a new sense of pride we never felt before.” 

Chu’s request was initially been rejected by the band, but his letter eventually changed their minds. The “Crazy Rich Asians” movie concludes with Katherine Ho’s cover of the Coldplay song. The song, sung in Mandarin, is meant to signify the pride that main character Rachel Chu, played by Wu, has towards her Chinese-American identity, Chu said. 

″[This movie] will give a whole generation of Asian-Americans, and others, the same sense of pride I got when I heard your song,” the director wrote. “I want all of them to have an anthem that makes them feel as beautiful as your words and melody made me feel when I needed it most.” 

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