Wang addressed the decision in a series of tweets, explaining that Howard was not really qualified to tell the story. Wang added that she doesn't want the film herself, but believes the studios should do better when hiring.
As a classically-trained pianist born in China, I believe it's impossible to tell Lang Lang's story without an intimate understanding of Chinese culture + the impact of the Cultural Revolution on artists & intellectuals + the effects of Western imperialism. Just saying.🧐 https://t.co/63B14TCsRB— Lulu Wang (@thumbelulu) September 22, 2020
I'm not saying this because I want to direct this movie. I do not. I just don't think these are the artists to grapple w/ the cultural specificities of Northeast China where Lang Lang (and my family) are from. Or w/ the cultural aspect of the physical violence in his upbringing.— Lulu Wang (@thumbelulu) September 22, 2020
Have we learned NOTHING from Mulan? I haven't said anything because yes representation and many people I love are involved, but I just have to. Just HAVE to. Because 2020 man... and I'm fucking exhausted.— Lulu Wang (@thumbelulu) September 22, 2020
In a statement released to The Hollywood Reporter, Howard and his producing partner Brian Grazer said, "Lang Lang's story is one of determination, passion, sacrifice, and finding the inner strength to beat the odds.... This film is a bridge between two cultures that share universal truths about the gauntlets we face in the pursuit of greatness."