Daniel Dae Kim and Grace Park have quit TV’s Hawaii Five-0 after being denied pay equality with their white costars.
Variety reported that the Asian actors asked for pay equality with their white costars Alex O’Loughlin and Scott Caan, which was sub-sequentially denied.
The network’s final offer was allegedly 10 to 15 per cent less than their costars, who both additional bonuses on top of their annual salary.
All four leads have appeared in 168 episodes of the programme, with it’s eighth season set to premiere this September.
Park has yet to comment, but Dae Kim has released a statement on his Facebook page, saying that he was willing to return to the show, but ‘couldn’t agree to terms’:
“Though I made myself available to come back, CBS and I weren’t able to agree to terms on a new contract, so I made the difficult choice not to continue.”
“I encourage us all to look beyond the disappointment of this moment to the bigger picture. The path to equality is rarely easy.”
Despite the disagreement over salary, Dae Kim said he was ‘grateful’ to the producers for their faith in him, and for creating a ‘developed, Asian American character’.
“As an Asian American actor, I know first-hand how difficult it is to find opportunities at all, let alone play a well developed, three dimensional character like Chin Ho.”
Executive producer Peter M. Lenkov released a statement thanking Park and Dae Kim, but did not mention the pay disparity.
“We are so appreciative of Daniel and Grace’s enormous talents, professional excellence, and the aloha spirit they brought to each and every one of our 168 episodes.”
Hollywood continues to be criticised for huge pay gaps between the salaries of men and women. In 2016, Variety published a salary report that revealed a disparity between white and minority actors.