Crazy Rich Asians author Kevin Kwan has found himself at the center of a crazy rich Hollywood bidding war. And Sony Pictures and SK Global are the ones who have come up on top, acquiring the film rights to Kwan’s latest novel Sex and Vanity. The book was published on June 30, but the film adaptation is already on its way, which make sense considering the monumental success of the 2018’s Crazy Rich Asians film directed by Jon M. Chu.
Variety reports that Sony Pictures and SK Global have landed the film rights to Sex and Vanity, the latest novel by Crazy Rich Asians author Kevin Kwan, after a “fierce” bidding war. Sex and Vanity hit bookshelves on June 30 and became an instant New York Times bestseller.
Sex and Vanity, which tells the “glittering tale of a young woman who finds herself torn between two men: the WASPY fiancé of her family’s dreams and George Zao, the man she is desperately trying to avoid falling in love with,” is Kwan’s first novel since the release of his Crazy Rich Asians trilogy, which became a global phenomenon and was adapted into a landmark film by Jon M. Chu. The 2018 film would become a watershed moment for Asian-American representation on the big screen and a box office hit, earning $240 million worldwide. A sequel is already in the works, based on Kwan’s second novel in the Crazy Rich Asians, trilogy, China Rich Girlfriend. So it’s no wonder that Hollywood is eager to adapt the next frothy comedy that Kwan has been able to cook up next — especially a story that sounds like another lighthearted romance meets culture clash comedy akin to Crazy Rich Asians.
“I am overjoyed to be embarking on this cinematic adventure with Sony Pictures and SK Global. Sony Pictures has produced so many of my favorite films over the years, and I am thrilled by Sanford Panitch’s vision for this project. I’m also very excited to be working again with my great friend John Penotti, who responded immediately and passionately to the world I created in Sex and Vanity,” said Kwan.
Kwan will be producing Sex and Vanity alongside SK Global’s John Penotti, whose Asian film investment group Ivanhoe Pictures financed Crazy Rich Asians. Xian Li is the executive in charge for SK Global and Jiao Chen executive oversees the project for Sony Pictures.
“Seven years ago Kevin entrusted us (and our producing partners) with his ground-breaking Crazy Rich Asians bestseller, and ever since working with him has been a creative dream,” Penotti said. “With Sex and Vanity he’s once again created a work of magic, crafting a riveting story about love and identity. We instantly fell in love with its heart and humor and are thrilled to partner with him again, as well as with our collaborators at Sony Pictures. Sanford and the team love the book as much as we do, and we are all committed to bringing this story to a global audience.”
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