Henry Golding wasn’t surprised by the backlash surrounding his casting as Nick Young in “Crazy Rich Asians,” the film adaptation of Kevin Kwan’s hit 2013 novel.

In an interview with Variety‘s Audrey Cleo, Golding explains how the controversy regarding his background and how authentic his portrayal of the role would be was nothing new for the actor.

“To be honest, I wasn’t shocked. I wasn’t saddened. I was almost expecting it,” he said. “I’ve had it my entire life.”

Golding, who also stars with Blake Lively and Anna Kendrick in Paul Feig’s “A Simple Favor,” described his upbringing as an interstitial state of place. He would struggle with “not being white enough to be living in England without sort of being noticed [and] coming back to Asia and not being Asian enough.”

Yet Golding never questioned his identity, now or then. “That’s something I never let affect my work. I’m super confident in who I am. And I am Asian, so there’s no two ways about it,” he said. “Having to explain myself was something that I didn’t think I needed to do.”

“Crazy Rich Asians,” which also stars Constance Wu, Awkwafina, and Michelle Yeoh, is now in theaters and is tracking for a $26 million opening weekend.