Daniel Dae Kim — former star of Lost and most recently, former star of Hawaii Five-0 — and co-star Grace Park left the CBS show over pay disparities. The public exit from the show came last week, and Kim has finally broken his silence about the disagreements about pay.
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“I will not be returning to Hawaii Five-0 when production starts next week,” stated Kim in a lengthy Facebook post. “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.”
Reports had been flying that the two actors decided to leave over pay inequality within the cast, more specifically between their white co-stars, Alex O’Loughlin and Scott Caan. Those white actors apparently make 10 to 15 percent more than Kim and Park, two well-established Asian-American actors. Sources told Variety that CBS was not budging on a final offer, and the two decided to leave the show entirely for their own benefit, and to make a statement about pay inequality in Hollywood.
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Both have been with the show since its reboot seven seasons ago, so the decision to leave has not been easy. Although, Kim explained his decision very simply and made an important statement about equal pay in the industry.
“As sad as it feels to say goodbye, what I feel most is gratitude. I am so deeply thankful to our crew, writers and everyone associated with the show – and especially the cast, who have been nothing but supportive through this entire process… Though transitions can be difficult, I encourage us all to look beyond the disappointment of this moment to the bigger picture. The path to equality is rarely easy.”
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The characters will be released from the show in the premiere of Hawaii Five-0’s eighth season, debuting Sept. 29.
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