Constance Wu says controversial ‘Fresh Off the Boat’ tweets were in response to sexual harassment frustrations

Constance Wu has shed more light on her controversial 2019 tweets regarding the renewal of her show “Fresh Off the Boat.”

At the time, Wu’s profanity-laced tweets shocked fans and co-stars, with many interpreting her frustration as ungrateful.

The resulting backlash included hate messages, death threats and a private altercation with a fellow Asian actor who told her she had “become a blight on the Asian American community.” Wu was so hurt by the exchange that she attempted suicide at the time.

Last month, Wu told The New York Times and The Atlantic that she had experienced sexual harrassment at the hands of a senior producer of ABC’s “Fresh Off the Boat” during the first year of filming.

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During her Monday appearance on “Late Night With Seth Meyers,” Wu explained that she was able to keep the producer from abusing her by the show’s third season when she “felt a little bit of job security” and “started saying no.”

Wu told Meyers that she kept mum about the experience to avoid staining the show’s reputation. However, her tweets about the show’s renewal ended up becoming an outlet for her frustration.

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“I feel like I was never able to really be myself on set, because I’d see my abuser being buddy-buddy with everybody else, knowing what he had done to me,” she shared. “The thing I learned is that bad feelings and abuse don’t just go away because you will it to. It’s going to come out somewhere. People didn’t understand the context of those tweets.”

In a separate interview with USA Today, Wu shared that she now feels “equipped with the tools to talk about it and open up conversations” after having “gone through a ton of therapy.”

Wu pointed out that her controversial tweets were a response to years of tolerating a toxic, abusive work environment.

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“I swallowed abuse for so long, and when you repress your feelings, they don't just go away because you willed them to,” Wu was quoted as saying. “That's not how feelings work."

Since returning to social media after a three-year break, Wu said she has received supportive messages from fans, friends and co-stars.

When asked about the unnamed Asian actor who messaged her, she revealed that while the person has not reached out to her since, she has already forgiven her.

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"She's just a very different kind of person than I. I'm loose and American and really crass, and I choose to be real even if it risks not always being polite."

Wu’s debut book, "Making a Scene," is set to release on Tuesday, Oct. 4.

 

Featured Image via Late Night with Seth Meyers