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Two weeks after being picked up to series, the drama, based on the book by Charles Yu, has enlisted Ronny Chieng (Shang-Chi, Crazy Rich Asians) and Chloe Bennet (Agents of SHIELD). The duo joins the previously cast Jimmy O. Yang in the series that counts Taika Waititi as an exec producer.
Interior Chinatown revolves around Willis Wu (Yang, Crazy Rich Asians), a background character trapped in a police procedural trying to find his way into the larger story who, along the way, discovers secrets about the strange world he inhabits and his family’s buried history.
Chieng will play Fatty Choi, Willis’ best friend who is more comfortable with who he is and content with his life working at the restaurant, drinking, hanging out and being the sidekick in the story. Bennet will play Detective Lana Lee, a new lead making her debut appearance in the procedural cop show Black & White. Lana brings a new energy to the series’ reliable but overworked premise. Exuding competence and an air of mystery, Lana represents everything Willis has dreamed of: success, a possible love interest and a bigger role in the story. Self-aware, compelling and enigmatic, Lana has a way of easily slipping between worlds — but this ability comes with a complicated reality of its own. When Lana enlists Willis’ help on a major case, the two form an unlikely partnership.
In development since 2020, Interior Chinatown counts author Yu as showrunner and executive producer alongside pilot director Waititi; Rideback’s Dan Lin, Lindsey Liberatore and Elsie Choi; Participant’s Jeff Skoll and Miura Kite; and Dive’s Garrett Basch.
Chieng’s credits include The Daily Show, Young Rock, Doogie Kamealoha, M.D., Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and Godzilla vs. Kong. He’s had numerous stand-up specials on Netflix and can currently be seen in the Blumhouse film M3GAN. He’s repped by APA, Artists First and Cohen Gardner.
Bennet, meanwhile, was poised to star in The CW’s live-action PowerPuff Girls update that did not move forward. Her credits also include Nashville and the Valley Girl remake. She’s with CAA and Hansen Jacobson.
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Thomas Brodie Sangster