Video Interview: Coolie’s Meileen Choo

Set in the 1860s, the eight-episode drama series Coolie follows a young Chinese girl who sets off from southern China to marry a political exile working on a sugarcane plantation in Cuba. She finds the plantation owner plotting for independence from Imperial Spain, aided by Chinese workers and African slaves seeking freedom, while the landowner’s spurned wife and her old lover conspire against them all.

The show comes from creator Meileen Choo, who serves as showrunner. Choo is chairman on the board of the Cathay Organisation Group of Companies. In addition to that role, she founded Cathay Film Company in 2020 to continue her passion for film.


Choo talks to TV Drama Weekly about Coolie’s numerous international threads and what it takes to get a series financed and made in today’s scripted landscape.