Last week, it was announced that Daniel Dae Kim & Grace Park were exiting Hawaii Five-0 after it was alleged that CBS refused to meet their salary demands. Now, one of the show creators has spoken out.
In a statement to Hawaii Five-0 fans, Peter Lenkov, the showrunner and one of the co-creators, said, "Thank you for all your messages and support over 7 seasons. We are all saddened by the Daniel and Grace news and I wanted to reach out to you directly."
He then went on to explain, "The truth is this: Both actors chose not to extend their contracts. CBS was extremely generous and proactive in their renegotiation talks. So much so, the actors were getting unprecedented raises, but in the end they chose to move on. No one wanted to see them go — they are irreplaceable."
Lenkov then shared his thoughts on why Park, specifically, may have chosen to leave, saying, "After being away from her family for seven years, I understood Grace's decision to leave. There was an opportunity for her to return for a handful of episodes, but for several reasons that didn't work out."
Lasty, Lenkov said, "In the end, everyone tried their best to keep the ohana intact. So much so, we were holding off from reporting the news, hoping an agreement could still be reached. Yes, it's heartbreaking, but this happens on long-running shows. It is a hurdle we all worked hard to overcome."
When the initial news came out that Kim and Pak were exiting Hawaii Five-0, Peter Lenkov, said, "I will never forget meeting Daniel while still writing the pilot and being certain there was no other actor who I'd want to play Chin Ho Kelly. Needless to say, Daniel has been an instrumental part of the success of Hawaii Five-O over the past 7 seasons and it has personally been a privilege to know him."
He then went on to praise Grace Park as well, writing, "Grace's presence gave Hawaii Five-O a beauty and serenity to each episode. She was the consummate collaborator, helping build her character from day 1. They will always be ohana to us, we will miss them and we wish them both all the best."