“Fresh Off the Boat” actress Constance Wu’s recent revelation that she attempted suicide after receiving a firestorm of hate on social media in 2019 has some examining the undue pressures placed on women of color in the spotlight, experts say.
At the time, Wu, who starred as the matriarch Jessica Huang in the groundbreaking Asian American show, had expressed disappointment after the sitcom was renewed, tweeting that she was “so upset right now that I’m literally crying,” among other remarks.
The comments set off a deluge of internet hate, with the actress being labeled “ungrateful.” Wu deleted the tweets, apologized and left social media for three years, remaining out of the spotlight. However on Thursday, she revealed that after “a few DMs from a fellow Asian actress told me I’d become a blight on the Asian American community, I started feeling like I didn’t even deserve to live anymore.”
Sociologists say that the aggressive criticism that followed Wu highlights some glaring double standards in Hollywood.
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Many across social media pointed out that when other high-profile actors, like Robert Pattinson, made digs at projects that had propelled them to stardom, they were portrayed as more relatable, rather than becoming the target of criticism. When they’ve made moves to further their own career ambitions, like Wu said she had hoped to do, they were met with respect, the sociologists said.
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