Simu Liu is speaking out on the abrupt cancellation of “Kim’s Convenience.”
The actor, who played Jung Kim on the sitcom, penned a lengthy Facebook post Wednesday that revealed many of the reasons that the show will not be returning in 2022.
“I’m feeling a host of emotions right now,” Liu’s post began, “There’s been a lot of talk and speculation about what happened, and I want to do my best to give accurate information.”
“Kim’s Convenience” is a sitcom about a Korean-Canadian family running a convenience store. Despite being renewed for Seasons 5 and 6 at once in the spring of 2020, the decision was reversed in March 2021. However, many fans were hopeful that the show could be acquired and saved by another network.
Liu took it upon himself to urge fans not to get their hopes up.
“The show can’t be ‘saved,’” he said, “It was not ‘cancelled’ in a traditional manner.”
Viewership, for instance, was not the issue. Later in the post, the actor shared that, the ratings for another Canadian import, “Schitt’s Creek’s,” were not as high as “Kim’s Convenience.”
According to Liu, the decision to end the show after five seasons, instead of the six that were originally planned, was not made by CBC, a Canadian broadcasting company, or Netflix, the streaming service that enabled the show to build an American fanbase. He explained that it is the producers that own “Kim’s Convenience” as an intellectual property and that therefore they were the ones to drop the axe.
However, Liu said that it was not just the cancellation that troubled him but what the producers plan to do with the property next: a spinoff for the series’ one white character, who is played by Nicole Power.
“The producers of the show are indeed spinning off a new show from the Shannon character,” he shared. “It’s been difficult for me. I love and am proud of Nicole, and I want the show to succeed for her… but I remain resentful of all of the circumstances that led to the one non-Asian character getting her own show.”
Liu added, “Not that they would ever ask, but I will adamantly refuse to reprise my role in any capacity.”
The actor said he felt his character and others on the show lacked depth, which led to “missed opportunities to show Asian characters with real depth and the ability to grow and evolve.”
Liu also noted that, despite boasting a cast full of Asian-Canadians with their own experiences to draw from, the producers and writers on the program were “overwhelmingly white,” leading to the lack of dimensional representation on-screen.
To add insult to injury, Liu claimed that he and his cast members were not paid proportionally to the success of the show, alleging they were paid “an absolute horsepoop rate,” especially compared to show’s like “Schitt’s Creek” with “brand name talent” and “American agents.”
Liu closed his heartfelt note with sadness but also gratitude.
“I’m so incredibly saddened that we will never get to watch these characters grow,” he wrote. “But I am still touched by the volume and the voracity of our fans…and I still believe in what the show once stood for; a shining example of what can happen when the gates come down and minorities are given a chance to shine.”
Lastly, the actor promised to answer some questions if followers had them but otherwise to check out “Kim’s Convenience” on Netflix.
Soon you will also be able to catch Liu in the upcoming Marvel movie, “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” which is slated for a July 9 release.