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Daniel Dae Kim Addresses His Departure From 'Hawaii Five-0' At TCA Panel

Daniel Dae Kim. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images)
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Earlier this summer, Hawaii Five-0 stars Daniel Dae Kim and Grace Park exited Hawaii Five-O after they were unable to negotiate a salary to match their white co-stars. Kim later confirmed the exit and while he didn't explicitly cite the pay inequality as a reason for his departure, he wrote how "[a]s an Asian American actor, I know first-hand how difficult it is to find opportunities at all, let alone play a well developed, three dimensional character like Chin Ho."

In a panel for ABC's The Good Doctor at the Television Critics' Association press tour Sunday (Kim is an executive producer for the show), he addressed the departure more fully. “[‘Hawaii Five-O’] was a really important part of my life for seven years,” Kim said, according to Variety. He added that, in reference to CBS studio executives Kelly Kahl and Thom Sherman, "I’ve gotten to know them and I like them, and I’m grateful for the words that they said on the panel the other day." At a CBS panel earlier in the week, the two executives addressed the Hawaii Five-0 departures, expressing their appreciation for Kim and Park and explaining how "[w]e made very, very strong attempts to keep them and offered them a lot of money to stick around, according to Variety.

Kim skirted around the issue of representation, but made a point to say how "it’s possible to be grateful for the opportunity and have respect for your colleagues and still maintain a steadfast sense of your self-worth." Kim and Park were reportedly offered 10-15% less than Alex O’Loughlin and Scott Caan, who will both remain on the show.

Deadline Hollywood notes the actor was repeatedly dogged with questions about his departure from Hawaii Five-0 despite being on a panel for The Good Doctor, which "started as a Korean show,” Kim said. “I am really content being behind the scenes," he said in response to questions about no longer starring on Hawaii Five-0.