BTS: Why is he “Bing Lee”

Filed in Behind the Scenes by on April 21, 2012

This post is syndicated from Bernie Su‘s Tumblr

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So a question that has come up numerous times in the comments is – why did we change Bingley to “Bing Lee”.

Some of you hate it, some of you find it clever, some of you don’t really care, and that is entirely your right of opinion. This is one of the many changes we’ve implemented in our modernized adaptation so if you’re along for the ride get used to seeing how we tweak things. I really hope this isn’t true for any of you, but if the name tweak (not change – tweak) bothers you to the point where you can’t enjoy the story that we are telling then I’m sorry for ruining the journey for you. Our goal here is to tell and honor a great story in a way never experienced before.

The origins of “Bing Lee” actually came from Hank in the very early stages of development. He noted that in the book, everyone just refers to him as Bingley and thought that it’d be silly for everyone to call him that with our series set today. Yes it’s true, we could have just referred to him by his first name (Charles) but Hank thought it’d be stronger to keep the connection phonetically, and hence Bing Lee. He recently admitted to me that at first he felt it was awkward saying Bing (pause) Lee vs Bingley, but he got used to it pretty quickly, which is what we’re hoping the rest of you awesome viewers experience.

So what does that mean that his name is Bing Lee? Well first off, as speculated, he’ll be of asian descent which as a result makes Caroline (Bing’s sister) into an asian as well. This immediately solved one of Hank and my early requirements for this show that the entire cast not be all caucasian. We both strongly felt that we needed to have other races in our series to accurately represent our setting of contemporary America.

Of course the next question you may ask is “Did we always intend Charlotte to be asian?” The answer to that is no. If you were to dig up our casting breakdowns from way back in December 2011, you’d see that we read all races for that role. Our two finalists for Charlotte came down to a very lovely and talented african actress and of course our Julia Cho, who simply brings another level and dimension to the character that hasn’t been seen in any adaptation before.

And finally, no, we did not set out to cast 3 red heads as the Bennet sisters, it just ended up that way. =)

Feel free to ask me any questions about the show via my Tumblr and/or Twitter. All of us working on The Lizzie Bennet Diaries are really excited by the enormous public response and it feels like everyday we’re closer and closer to a “pick up” to continue the series. So for now keep watching, sharing, and enjoying.

Thank you for joining us on this amazing experience,

Head Writer and Co-Creator of The Lizzie Bennet Diaries
Bernie Su

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