A week after reports that the actor was in talks to join the “Hellboy” reboot, Daniel Dae Kim has told fans on Twitter that “it’s official.” An individual with knowledge of the film tells TheWrap this means Kim will be replacing Ed Skrein in the role of Major Ben Daimio.
On Tuesday, TheWrap reported that the “Hawaii Five-O” actor was in talks to take on the role. The casting comes after Skrein stepped down from the role amidst whitewashing claims. Skrein was to play Major Ben Daimio, a Japanese-American character in the original “Hellboy” comics. Daimio is a former Marine who, after a failed rescue mission in Brazil, receives a mysterious curse that transforms him into a were-jaguar at night.
“I accepted the role unaware that the character in the original comics was of mixed Asian heritage,” Skrein wrote on Instagram. “It is clear this character in a culturally accurate way holds significance for people, and that to neglect this responsibility would continue a worrying tendency to obscure ethnic minority stories and voices in the Arts.
“I feel it is important to honor and respect that. Therefore I have decided to step down so the role can be cast appropriately,” he added.
Dae Kim recently ended a seven-year run in a lead role on “Hawaii Five-O” along with co-star Grace Park. The Korean-American actor left after a salary dispute in which he sought to be paid the same amount as his white co-stars, Alex O’Loughlin and Scott Caan.
The first “Hellboy” earned a worldwide total of $99 million at the box office and starred Ron Perlman and Selma Blair. Its sequel performed better, earning $160 million worldwide. Although the movies weren’t runaway smash hits, critics loved them, both earning a score in the 80s on Rotten Tomatoes.