The 48-year-old actor, who was part of the series since 2010 as Lt. Chin Ho Kelly, thanked the show’s producers and network, even though he and co-star Grace Park (Kono Kalakaua) struggled to reach a deal with CBS over pay equity.
“By now many of you have heard the news, and I’m sad to say it is true. I will not be returning to Hawaii Five-0 when production starts next week,” Kim wrote in a message to his fans on Facebook. “Though I made myself available to come back, CBS and I weren’t able to agree to terms on a new contract, so I made the difficult choice not to continue.”
“I’m so sorry we won’t be continuing this journey together,” he continued.
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CBS Television Studios offered Kim and Park new salary contracts that were 10-15% less than what lead actors Alex O’Loughlin and Scott Caan make, according to Variety.
In his post, Kim expressed gratitude for getting the opportunity to represent the Asian-American community through the character of Lt. Kelly.
“As 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,” he wrote. “I will miss him sincerely.”
The former “Lost” star concluded his post on a positive note.
“I’ll end by saying that though transitions can be difficult, I encourage us all to look beyond the disappointment of this moment to the bigger picture,” he said. “The path to equality is rarely easy. But I hope you can be excited for the future. I am.”
Kim will serve as executive producer on the new medical drama, “The Good Doctor,” which premieres on ABC this fall.
“Hawaii Five-0” returns for its eighth season on September 29.