Alum of “Fresh Off the Boat” Constance Wu claims in her upcoming memoir that a senior member of the production team on the now-defunct ABC sitcom sexually harassed her.
According to the New York Times, the actress, 40, only refers to the staffer in “Making a Scene” by an initial.
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According to the New York Times, Wu also claims that during the show’s first season in 2015, the man exhibited controlling behaviors such as “demanding that she run all her business matters through him and telling her what to wear.”
“‘Fresh Off the Boat’ was my first-ever TV show,” Wu told the publication. “I was thrown into this world. I don’t have parents in the industry. And because I was 30, people thought I knew what I was doing. It made me paranoid and embarrassed.”
The actress, who played the show’s matriarch Jessica Huang, claims things got physical when she and the producer went to a sporting event together. According to the Times, he “placed his hand on her thigh, his hand eventually grazing her crotch.”
Wu claims she asked him to stop, and the two later dismissed the alleged incident. Wu discussed her decision to speak out about the alleged misconduct during a panel at the Atlantic Festival in Washington, D.C. on Friday.
“I kept my mouth shut for a really long time about a lot of sexual harassment and intimidation that I received the first two seasons of the show.
“Because, after the first two seasons, once it was a success, once I was no longer scared of losing my job, that’s when I was able to start saying ‘no’ to the harassment, ‘no’ to the intimidation, from this particular producer,” she said, per Variety.
“And, so I thought, ‘You know what? I handled it, nobody has to know, I don’t have to stain this Asian American producer’s reputation, I don’t have to stain the reputation of the show. Fresh Off the Boat” ended its six-season run in February 2020.
Wu wrote her book while on leave from the public eye. She took a three-year hiatus from social media after receiving backlash for tweeting that she was “so upset” and “literally crying” about the “Fresh Off the Boat” renewal in 2019.
She even tried to commit suicide before a friend intervened to save her life.
“Luckily, a friend found me and rushed me to the ER. It was a scary moment that made me reassess a lot in my life,” the “Hustlers” star explained in a July Twitter post. “For the next few years, I put my career aside to focus on my mental health. AsAms don’t talk about mental health enough.”
Constance Wu added that her forthcoming memoir is “not always the most flattering portrayal” of herself. But it’s “as honest as I know how to be,” she noted.
“Because the truth is, I’m not poised or graceful or perfect. I’m emotional. I make mistakes…lots of ’em!” she concluded.
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“After a little break from Hollywood and a lot of therapy I feel OK enough to venture back on here (at least for a little bit). And even though I’m scared, I’ve decided that I owe it to the me-of-3-years-ago to be brave and share my story so that it might help someone with theirs.”
Constance Wu previously stated that her opposition to the “FOTB” renewal stemmed from the fact that it required her to “give up another project that I was really passionate about.” In an August 2019 interview with The Los Angeles Times, she clarified the purpose of her tweet, calling herself “dramatic.”