Sneak Peek: KUNG FU, Starring Olivia Liang, Kheng Hua Tan, Shannon Dang, Jon Prasida, Eddie Liu, Gavin Stenhouse, Vanessa Kai, Tony Chung and Tzi Ma, Premieres on April 7 on The CW

Oliva Liang as Nicky Shen in KUNG FU. Photo: Nino Muñoz/The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
(L-R): Tzi Ma as Jin Shen and Olivia Liang as Nicky Shen in KUNG FU. Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved

The new series KUNG FU, starring Olivia Liang, Tzi Ma and Kheng Hua Tan, will debut Wednesday, April 7 (8:00-9:00pm ET/PT) on The CW.

A quarter-life crisis causes a young Chinese American woman, Nicky Shen (Olivia Liang), to drop out of college and go on a life-changing journey to an isolated monastery in China. But when she returns to San Francisco, she finds her hometown is overrun with crime and corruption and her own parents Jin (Tzi Ma) and Mei-Li (Kheng Hua Tan) are at the mercy of a powerful Triad.

(L-R): Tzi Ma as Jin Shen, Shannon Dang as Althea Shen and Kheng Hau Tan as Mei – Li in KUNG FU. Photo: Kailey Schwerman/The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved

Nicky will rely on her tech-savvy sister Althea (Shannon Dang) and Althea’s fiancé Dennis (Tony Chung), pre-med brother Ryan (Jon Prasida), Assistant District Attorney and ex-boyfriend Evan (Gavin Stenhouse), and new love interest Henry (Eddie Liu) as well as her martial arts skills and Shaolin values to protect her community and bring criminals to justice…all while searching for the ruthless assassin who killed her Shaolin mentor Pei-Ling (Vanessa Kai) and is now targeting her.

KUNG FU stars Olivia Liang as Nicky Shen, Kheng Hua Tan as Mei-Li Shen, Shannon Dang as Althea Shen, Jon Prasida as Ryan, Eddie Liu as Henry Yan, Gavin Stenhouse as Evan Hartley, Vanessa Kai as Pei-Ling Zhang, Tony Chung as Dennis Soong and Tzi Ma as Jin Shen.

Christina M. Kim wrote the pilot episode and serves as executive producer/co-showrunner of the series with Robert Berens. Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter, Martin Gero and David Madden also serve as executive producers. Hanelle Culpepper is directing and co-executive producing the pilot episode. KUNG FU is produced by Berlanti Productions and Quinn’s House in association with Warner Bros. Television and is inspired by the original series created by Ed Spielman.

On Sunday, April 11 (10:00-11:00pm ET/PT), TNT will air an encore presentation of the premiere episode of The CW’s KUNG FU.

 

Hui Tong and Kelly Ng’s CURTAIN UP! Wins DisOrient 2021 Award for Best Feature Documentary

Congratulations to Hui Tong and Kelly Ng, who produced and directed Curtain Up!,  on their DisOrient 2021 Award for Best Feature Documentary, announced tonight at the closing night ceremony of the Festival.In America, every child of immigrants has an assimilation story, but not all of them include an opportunity to premiere the kids’ adaptation of hit musical “Frozen,” and the struggles with identity that come with it.

For over ten years now, the PS 124 theater club in New York’s Chinatown has been the only Asian-American team to compete at the renowned Junior Theater Festival, a gathering of young thespians from across the world. It even earned the privilege of being one of a select few schools nationally to premiere the kids production of Frozen. As the kids gear up for the much-anticipated show, Curtain Up! follows their lives behind the scenes and the challenges that have surfaced.

What can theater help these children uncover about who they are? Which cultural stereotypes does these kids prove, and which do they debunk? What unexpected turns will these kids be confronted with, as they present their final elementary school performance, before graduating into middle schools?

Through rehearsals and time behind the scenes, the experience of growing up and the heartbreaks that come with it, this charming documentary tackles deep questions of identity and transitions from a kids-eye view and will leave an audience provoked. This charming documentary will also underscore – amidst high-pitched voices and youthful exuberance – how much we can learn from these nine- and ten-year-olds.

You can purchase a ticket for Curtain Up! until 11:59pm PST/2:59am EST and you can watch it Click here to purchase a ticket to watch the film.

Hui Tong
Hui Tong

Hui Tong – Director/Producer

Hui Tong is a documentary filmmaker from Beijing and currently based in Beijing. Six years ago he came to the U.S. for college and developed a strong interest in the intersection of history, arts, and identity. He has been making narrative and documentary shorts since high school, and in writing covered Asian American identity issues. Curtain Up! is his first feature-length documentary.

He has just finished his first book on the issue of identity, through the lenses of Asian American, Chinese American, mainland Chinese and overseas Chinese students.

Kelly Ng
Kelly Ng

Kelly is a journalist and documentary filmmaker from Singapore, drawn particularly to stories on minority communities, education and mental health. Her video and written stories have been published on, The Atlantic, NBC, and South China Morning Post, among others. She spent most of her journalism life in print before venturing into documentaries. Curtain Up! Is her filmmaking debut.

Kelly continues to work on documentaries outside her full-time job as a correspondent at Singapore’s The Business Times.

Curtain Up! Website

 

DisOrient Asian American Film Festival: The role of Asian American filmmakers in supporting Black Lives Matter Panel Discussion Featuring Karen Ishizuka, Hisonni Mustafa, Ursula Liang, Daisy Truong and Tadashi Nakamura

(Left to Right) Karen Ishizuka, Hisonni Mustafa, Ursula Liang, Daisy Truong and Tadashi Nakamura

The DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon is  celebrating 16 years of uplifting Asian American and Pacific Islander stories and voices this year and is being held virtually from March 19-28, 2021. The curated program includes narrative and documentary films, livestreamed events and recorded Q&A’s to enrich your film experience.

(Left to Right) Karen Ishizuka, Tadashi Nakamura, Hisonni Mustafa, Ursula Liang, Daisy Truong

On Sunday, March 21 at 3pm PST/6pm EST, DisOrient is presenting a panel discussion on The role of Asian American filmmakers in supporting Black Lives Matter:  Moderated by DisOrient Founder Jason Mak. Panelists: Daisy Truong, Hisonni Mustafa, Karen Ishizuka, Tadashi Nakamura and Ursula Liang. Click here for tickets. Tickets required—“Pay what you can”.

Check out trailers of the films featured in the Festival below.

Check out the website for the full festival schedule, program, and film trailers. Facebook

Life Imitates Art for Emy Coligado with Dream Role in Mallorie Ortega’s THE GIRL WHO LEFT HOME

Mar. 19-28: DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon Lineup 

Mar. 28: Disorient Asian American Film Festival Closing Night Film Q & A with Virginia Wing, Lia Chang, Jason Ma, Garth Kravits and Jo Yang for WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG, and Donald Young for COMING HOME AGAIN 

Mar. 28: Disorient Asian American Film Festival Closing Night Film Q & A with Virginia Wing, Lia Chang, Jason Ma, Garth Kravits and Jo Yang for WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG, and Donald Young for COMING HOME AGAIN

The Closing Night Film program of the 16th Annual DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon will feature the Pacific Northwest premieres of Garth Kravits’ short film When the World Was Young starring Lia Chang, Jason Ma, Virginia Wing and Jo Yang; and Wayne Wang’s Coming Home Again, based on a personal essay by Chang Rae Lee, and starring Justin Chon, Jackie Chung, and Christina July Kim.

The Festival is being held virtually this year from March 19-28, 2021. Click here to purchase tickets to view the films.

The Livestreamed Q&A on Sunday March 28 @ 4:00pm PST/7:00pm EST will feature Lia Chang, Jason Ma, Virginia Wing, Jo Yang and Garth Kravits for When The World Was Young and Donald Young for Coming Home AgainClick here for tickets.

Jason Ma, Virginia Wing and Lia Chang in WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG. Photo by Garth Kravits

In WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG, siblings Benjamin (Jason Ma) and Audrey (Lia Chang) return home to confront their Mother’s (Virginia Wing) memory loss and discover a hidden key to her past. The cast also features Daniel Dunlow, Michelle Simone Miller and Mark York.

Jason Ma, Lia Chang and Virginia Wing in When the World Was Young. Photo by Garth Kravits

Written and directed by Garth Kravits, the film is Executive Produced by Lia Chang’s production company Bev’s Girl Films, with producers Garth Kravits of Cut & Dry Films and Eric Elizaga. The film was shot on location in New York.

The production team includes 1st A.D. Eric Elizaga, 2nd A.D. Anastasia Shulgina, Key Hair and Make-up by Dorothy Bhadra; Kristen Lee Rosenfeld on Piano, Emma Svetvilas on Cello, Garth Kravits on Guitar recorded live at Yes It Is Productions.

Watch the trailer for WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG below:

Virginia Wing. Photo by Lia Chang

Virginia Wing (Virginia) is a Chinese-American actress whose ancestors came to the “Gold Mountain” from Canton (now Guangdong) in the mid-1800s, lured  by the Gold Rush and the building of the railroads. She is currently writing about growing up Southern in the Mississippi Delta, where she was born and raised. Professionally, she has run the gamut from opera, theatre, cabaret, TV, film, playwriting, directing and producing to script analysis. She modeled in her youth and is in the Breck Girl Hall of Fame. She was the model in the Mitsouko by Guerlain ad in the 60s, which won awards internationally. She was a nominee for Best Actress in the Hollywood NAACP Image Awards. She is most proud of this film because the characters did not have to have Chinese accents, did not have to speak Chinese or refer to themselves as being Chinese. They were not written as Exotic or Other, but as Americans who happen to be Chinese, caught up in a universal story. At last! She can be seen in NYTW’s production of Three Sisters in the Spring of 2020. Click on the  Performing Arts Legacy Website for more about Virginia Wing.

Jason Ma. Photo by Lia Chang

Jason Ma (Benjamin) is a son of an immigrant family, and a grateful descendant of a long line of those who were able to persist, overcome and succeed on their way to becoming Americans. He wrote book, music and lyrics for Gold Mountain and is the 2017 recipient of the ASCAP Foundation’s Cole Porter Award for his work as a composer/lyricist. Along with writing, he is an actor who has been seen on Broadway and Off-Broadway stages, in regional theaters and many international venues. Please visit: www.goldmountainthemusical.com

Lia Chang
Lia Chang

Lia Chang (Audrey) is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers,  musicians and corporations. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman, Balancing Act, Belongingness, When the World was Young and Hide and Seek.

Jo Yang

Jo Yang (Amah) began her professional stage acting career in the Pacific Northwest and now lives and works in New York City. Recently she appeared as Sook Ja in New York Theatre Workshop’s production of “Endlings” before it was abruptly shut down by the pandemic in Mar 2020. She is grateful that the play had its world premiere and a full run at The American Repertory Theatre the year prior. Less than six degrees of separation bring Virginia Wing and Jo together on this project as they also worked with each other at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Festival. As well as theatre, Jo’s credits extend across the board, in film, tv, radio, commercials and print. She has recurring roles on “The Affair” and  “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”, speaking Mandarin. Her Film/TV credits are listed here.

Garth Kravits. Photo by Lia Chang
Garth Kravits. Photo by Lia Chang

Garth Kravits is an actor, singer, musician, composer and award winning filmmaker, director and editor. He made his Broadway debut in the Tony award winning musical The Drowsy Chaperone and originated the role of Ritchie in the Broadway show Gettin’ the Band Back Together’. His Off-Broadway credits include Old Jews Telling Jokes, Toxic Audio and Smart Blonde. He has appeared regionally in Gettin’ The Band Back Together, Meet Me in St. Louis: A Live Radio Play, and It’s A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, (Bucks County Playhouse) Kravits has appeared on TV in “Mr. Robot,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” HBO’s “Divorce,” “30 Rock,” “The Blacklist,” “Nurse Jackie,” “The Carrie Diaries,” “Hostages” and in the new TV shows “The Hunters” (Amazon Prime) and “Tommy” (CBS). Bev’s Girl Films’ Hide and Seek and Rom-Com Gone Wrong have also been official selections of Disorient. DisOrient is the premiere Asian American independent film festival of Oregon, celebrating films with authentic Asian Pacific American voices, histories and stories. They highlight social justice themes that translate to universal human experiences. They promote representation, diversity and inclusion to broaden the narrative of who is American, and to strengthen and build community.

All-access passes ($48) and single tickets ($9) for all films may be purchased online at www.disorientfilm.org. Check out the website for the full festival schedule, program, and film trailers.

Garth Kravits’ Short Film WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Starring Virginia Wing, Jason Ma, Lia Chang and Jo Yang is an Official Selection of The 16th Annual DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon

Broadwayworld: WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Set For Virtual World Premiere At The New York Shorts International Film Festival

Life Imitates Art for Emy Coligado with Dream Role in Mallorie Ortega’s THE GIRL WHO LEFT HOME

Mar. 19-28: DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon Lineup

The DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon is  celebrating 16 years of uplifting Asian American and Pacific Islander stories and voices this year and will be a held virtually from March 19-28, 2021. The curated program includes narrative and documentary films, livestreamed events and recorded Q&A’s to enrich your film experience. Check out the trailers below.

(Left to Right) Karen Ishizuka, Tadashi Nakamura, Hisonni Mustafa, Ursula Liang, Daisy Truong

The role of Asian American filmmakers in supporting Black Lives Matter: Saturday, March 21 @ 3:00pm PST. Tickets required—“Pay what you can”. Moderated by DisOrient Founder Jason Mak. Panelists: Daisy Truong, Hisonni Mustafa, Karen Ishizuka, Tadashi Nakamura and Ursula Liang. Click here for tickets.

2021 Filmmakers
2021 Filmmakers

Film Highlights: Opening Night film: The Girl Who Left Home: A live-action, musical feature film by writer/director/lyricist/producer Mallorie Ortega, and producer Angelo Santos. The film will be followed by two short films, Anna Anaka’s  Looking Back, and Joella Cabalu’s Ode to a Seafaring People. Livestreamed Q&A on Saturday, March 20 @ 4:00pm PST/7:00pm EST featuring Mallorie Ortega, Haven Everly, Emy Coligado, Paolo Montalban, Joella Cabalu and Anna Anaka.

Click here for tickets.

Haven Everly, Emy Coligado and Paolo Montalban in Mallorie Ortega’s THE GIRL WHO LEFT HOME.

Life Imitates Art for Emy Coligado with Dream Role in Mallorie Ortega’s THE GIRL WHO LEFT HOME

Centerpiece film: Cane Fire: Pacific NW Premiere; Feature Documentary. Merging film history with the personal and political, filmmaker Anthony Banua-Simon offers an eye-opening look at the Hawaiian Island of Kauai. The film will be preceded by two short films, Where Smoke Rises and The Pākalā Kids. Livestreamed Q&A on Friday, March 26 @  6:30pm PST/9:30pm EST. Click here for tickets.

Closing Night Film: Coming Home AgainPNW Premiere. Feature film by Wayne Wang, based on a personal essay by Chang Rae Lee, and starring Justin Chon, Jackie Chung, and Christina July Kim.

Our film, When the World Was Young, directed by Garth Kravits and starring Virginia Wing, Jason Ma, Lia Chang and Jo Yang, will screen before Coming Home Again. Livestreamed Q&A on Sunday March 28 @ 4:00pm PST/7:00pm EST. Click here for tickets.

Other film highlights include: Water Like Fire: Mainland US premiere. Lovely, poetic, Hawaii-made indie film. Sansei Granddaughters’ Journey 5 artists honor their ancestors and the 120,000 people ofJapanese ancestry who were unjustly incarcerated during WWII. See You ThenFeature Narrative by award-winning filmmaker Mari Walker. After 15 years, Kris is finally ready to explain her transgender journey to college girlfriend Naomi (Lynn Chen). Screening with Kaye: This Life Around, the artistic journey of a musician rediscovering her music. Take Out GirlFeature film by award-winning director Hisonni Mustafa, with an Asian American hip-hop soundtrack; screening with the world premiere of Blue Lanterns. 4 shorts programs: Emerging Voices, Japanese American Voices Past and Present, Voices of Family, Raising Our Voices All-access passes ($48) and tickets for all films may be purchased online at www.disorientfilm.org. Check out the website for the full festival schedule, program, and film trailers. Facebook

Video: #NYCITFF2021 Q & A with RAYA AND THE LAST DRAGON’s Qui Nguyen and Marc Schultz

New Ohio Theatre, located in Manhattan’s West Village, is presenting the 2021 NYC Indie Theatre Film Festival, showcasing over 30 shorts, features and web series episodes, running March 10 – 14.

The NYC Indie Theatre Film Festival presents work from New York City independent theatre artists defying labels and branching out into digital media and film. For 2021 they’re taking the festival online and opening it up to include indie theatre artists from across the United States. They’re excited to take advantage of the internet’s wide reach to meet a new, national community of fellow theatre artists and showcase new perspectives and voices from across the country. North and South. Coast to coast. This time, it’s national.

The NYC Indie Theatre Film Festival celebrated Opening Night of its 2021 edition on March 10 with a free, online interview and Q&A with playwright and screenwriter Qui Nguyen, co-writer of the new Disney film, Raya and the Last Dragon. The talk was moderated by Festival Co-Producer Marc Stuart Weitz, who says, “Qui has a wonderful perspective on being an artist in New York City and in Hollywood, and I know our audiences will be fascinated by his experience.”

Qui Nguyen is a playwright, TV/Film writer, and Co-Founder of the OBIE Award-winning Vampire Cowboys. For the screen, he’s written for AMC’s “Dispatches from Elsewhere,” Netflix’s “The Society,” Syfy’s “Incorporated,” PBS’s “Peg+Cat,” and Marvel Studios. He’s currently a screenwriter for Walt Disney Animation Studios where he penned the recent Raya and the Last Dragon starring Kelly Marie Tran and Awkwafina. Past awards include a 2016 Daytime Emmy Award, a 2016 Steinberg Award for his play Vietgone, and GLAAD nominations for his plays She Kills Monsters and Soul Samurai.

New Ohio Theatre’s Artistic Director Robert Lyons says, “I’ve known Qui for a long time now. Including the good fortune of co-writing a piece with him. He’s a singular talent and that’s why we invited Vampire Cowboys into our Archive Residency program, where they premiered Six Rounds of Vengeance in 2015. He is perfect as our Guest Artist for this festival as a quintessential indie theatre guy who’s making good in LA.”

“I’m so thrilled to partner on this year’s edition of the festival to help broaden its reach to a wider audience,” says Festival Co-Producer Allyson Morgan. “As a longtime partner of the festival with F*It Club’s annual Film Race, I am excited to bring both my theatre and film festival experience together to celebrate a nationwide community of artists in 2021.”

Festival passes are $35 and include admission to all screenings, Q&As and panels during the festival. To purchase, view screenings and events, and for more info go to https://nycitff2021.eventive.org.

A complete list and schedule of films and events, along with prices for individual tickets and blocks, will be announced at the end of February.

New Ohio Theatre is a two-time Obie Award-winning theatre under the leadership of Robert Lyons, Artistic Director, and Jaclyn Biskup, Creative Director. The New Ohio serves New York’s most adventurous theatre audiences by developing and presenting bold work from today’s vast independent theatre community. They believe the best of this community, the small artist-driven ensembles and the daring producing companies who operate without a permanent theatrical home, are actively expanding the boundaries of where American theatre is right now and where it’s going. From their home in the West Village’s historic Archive Building, the New Ohio provides a high-profile platform for downtown’s most mature, ridiculous, engaged, irreverent, gut-wrenching, frivolous, sophisticated, foolish and profound theatrical endeavors. For info visit http://NewOhioTheatre.org.

 

Mar. 28: Disorient Film Festival Closing Night Film Q & A with Virginia Wing, Jason Ma, Lia Chang, Garth Kravits and Jo Yang for WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG, and Donald Young for COMING HOME AGAIN

The Closing Night Film program of the 16th Annual DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon will feature the Pacific Northwest premieres of Garth Kravits’ short film When the World Was Young starring Lia Chang, Jason Ma, Virginia Wing and Jo Yang; and Wayne Wang’s Coming Home Again, based on a personal essay by Chang Rae Lee, and starring Justin Chon, Jackie Chung, and Christina July Kim.

The Festival will be held virtually this year from March 19-28, 2021. Click here to purchase tickets to view the film.

Jo Yang, Garth Kravits, Virginia Wing, Jason Ma and Lia Chang attend Asian American Night of CAMBODIAN ROCK BAND at Pershing Square Signature Center in New York on February 9, 2020. Photo by Alex Sanchez

The Livestreamed Q&A on Sunday March 28 @ 4:00pm PST/7:00pm EST will feature Lia Chang, Jason Ma, Virginia Wing, Jo Yang and Garth Kravits for When The World Was Young and Donald Young for Coming Home AgainClick here for tickets.

Jason Ma, Virginia Wing and Lia Chang in WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG. Photo by Garth Kravits

In WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG, siblings Benjamin (Jason Ma) and Audrey (Lia Chang) return home to confront their Mother’s (Virginia Wing) memory loss and discover a hidden key to her past. The cast also features Daniel Dunlow, Michelle Simone Miller and Mark York.

Jason Ma, Lia Chang and Virginia Wing in When the World Was Young. Photo by Garth Kravits

Written and directed by Garth Kravits, the film is Executive Produced by Lia Chang’s production company Bev’s Girl Films, with producers Garth Kravits of Cut & Dry Films and Eric Elizaga. The film was shot on location in New York. The production team includes 1st A.D. Eric Elizaga, 2nd A.D. Anastasia Shulgina, Key Hair and Make-up by Dorothy Bhadra; Kristen Lee Rosenfeld on Piano, Emma Svetvilas on Cello, Garth Kravits on Guitar recorded live at Yes It Is Productions.

Watch the trailer for WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG below:

Virginia Wing. Photo by Lia Chang

Virginia Wing (Virginia) is a Chinese-American actress whose ancestors came to the “Gold Mountain” from Canton (now Guangdong) in the mid-1800s, lured  by the Gold Rush and the building of the railroads. She is currently writing about growing up Southern in the Mississippi Delta, where she was born and raised. Professionally, she has run the gamut from opera, theatre, cabaret, TV, film, playwriting, directing and producing to script analysis. She modeled in her youth and is in the Breck Girl Hall of Fame. She was the model in the Mitsouko by Guerlain ad in the 60s, which won awards internationally. She was a nominee for Best Actress in the Hollywood NAACP Image Awards. She is most proud of this film because the characters did not have to have Chinese accents, did not have to speak Chinese or refer to themselves as being Chinese. They were not written as Exotic or Other, but as Americans who happen to be Chinese, caught up in a universal story. At last! She can be seen in NYTW’s production of Three Sisters in the Spring of 2020. Click on the  Performing Arts Legacy Website for more about Virginia Wing.

Jason Ma. Photo by Lia Chang

Jason Ma (Benjamin) is a son of an immigrant family, and a grateful descendant of a long line of those who were able to persist, overcome and succeed on their way to becoming Americans. He wrote book, music and lyrics for Gold Mountain and is the 2017 recipient of the ASCAP Foundation’s Cole Porter Award for his work as a composer/lyricist. Along with writing, he is an actor who has been seen on Broadway and Off-Broadway stages, in regional theaters and many international venues. Please visit: www.goldmountainthemusical.com

Lia Chang
Lia Chang

Lia Chang (Audrey) is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers,  musicians and corporations. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman, Balancing Act, Belongingness, When the World was Young and Hide and Seek.

Jo Yang

Jo Yang (Amah) began her professional stage acting career in the Pacific Northwest and now lives and works in New York City. Recently she appeared as Sook Ja in New York Theatre Workshop’s production of “Endlings” before it was abruptly shut down by the pandemic in Mar 2020. She is grateful that the play had its world premiere and a full run at The American Repertory Theatre the year prior. Less than six degrees of separation bring Virginia Wing and Jo together on this project as they also worked with each other at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Festival. As well as theatre, Jo’s credits extend across the board, in film, tv, radio, commercials and print. She has recurring roles on “The Affair” and  “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”, speaking Mandarin. Her Film/TV credits are listed here.

Garth Kravits. Photo by Lia Chang
Garth Kravits. Photo by Lia Chang

Garth Kravits is an actor, singer, musician, composer and award winning filmmaker, director and editor. He made his Broadway debut in the Tony award winning musical The Drowsy Chaperone and originated the role of Ritchie in the Broadway show Gettin’ the Band Back Together’. His Off-Broadway credits include Old Jews Telling Jokes, Toxic Audio and Smart Blonde. He has appeared regionally in Gettin’ The Band Back Together, Meet Me in St. Louis: A Live Radio Play, and It’s A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, (Bucks County Playhouse) Kravits has appeared on TV in “Mr. Robot,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” HBO’s “Divorce,” “30 Rock,” “The Blacklist,” “Nurse Jackie,” “The Carrie Diaries,” “Hostages” and in the new TV shows “The Hunters” (Amazon Prime) and “Tommy” (CBS). Bev’s Girl Films’ Hide and Seek and Rom-Com Gone Wrong have also been official selections of Disorient. DisOrient is the premiere Asian American independent film festival of Oregon, celebrating films with authentic Asian Pacific American voices, histories and stories. They highlight social justice themes that translate to universal human experiences. They promote representation, diversity and inclusion to broaden the narrative of who is American, and to strengthen and build community.

All-access passes ($48) and tickets for all films may be purchased online at www.disorientfilm.org. Check out the website for the full festival schedule, program, and film trailers.

Garth Kravits’ Short Film WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Starring Virginia Wing, Jason Ma, Lia Chang and Jo Yang is an Official Selection of The 16th Annual DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon

Broadwayworld: WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Set For Virtual World Premiere At The New York Shorts International Film Festival

Life Imitates Art for Emy Coligado with Dream Role in Mallorie Ortega’s THE GIRL WHO LEFT HOME

Focus Features to Release Eddie Huang’s Boogie, Starring Taylor Takahashi, Taylour Paige, Pamelyn Chee, Jorge Lendeborg Jr., Alexa Mareka, Mike Moh, Perry Yung, and Pop Smoke on Mar. 5

From acclaimed writer, producer and restauranteur Eddie Huang comes his directorial debut Boogie, the coming-of-age story of Alfred “Boogie” Chin, a basketball phenom living in Queens, New York, who dreams of one day playing in the NBA. While his parents pressure him to focus on earning a scholarship to an elite college, Boogie must find a way to navigate a new girlfriend, high school, on-court rivals and the burden of expectation.

(L-R) Actor Pop Smoke, director Eddie Huang and actor Taylor Takahashi on the set of their film ‘Boogie’. Source: Nicole Rivelli / Focus Features
Perry Yung. Photo by Lia Chang

Huang, who wrote the best-selling Fresh Off the Boat: A Memoir, both directed and wrote the screenplay for Boogie starring Taylor Takahashi, Taylour Paige, Pamelyn Chee, Jorge Lendeborg Jr., Alexa Mareka, Mike Moh, Perry Yung, and Pop Smoke. Producers are Josh Bratman of Immersive Pictures, Josh McLaughlin of Wink Productions, and Michael Tadross. Rafael Martinez is an executive producer.

Mar. 19-28: 16th Anniversary Disorient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon Lineup; Sneak Preview in February

The DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon is  celebrating 16 years of uplifting Asian American and Pacific Islander stories and voices this year and will be a held virtually from March 19-28, 2021. The curated program includes narrative and documentary films, livestreamed events and recorded Q&A’s to enrich your film experience.

DisOrient 2021 Sneak Preview

Down a Dark Stairwell

Down A Dark StairwellScreening February 27-28, 2021; Tickets required, $9. Click here for tickets. Livestreamed Q&A: Sunday, February 28 @ 3:00 PST. Moderated by DisOrient founder Jason Mak; with Director Ursula Liang and Documentarian and film editor JM Harper. Panel Discussion–Livestream. This content can only be viewed in authorized regions:Washington, Oregon, California, Hawaii.

(Left to Right) Karen Ishizuka, Tadashi Nakamura, Hisonni Mustafa, Ursula Liang, Daisy Truong

The role of Asian American filmmakers in supporting Black Lives Matter: Saturday, March 21 @ 3:00pm PST. Tickets required—“Pay what you can”. Moderated by DisOrient Founder Jason Mak. Panelists: Daisy Truong, Hisonni Mustafa, Karen Ishizuka, Tadashi Nakamura and Ursula Liang. Click here for tickets.

Haven Everly, Emy Coligado and Paolo Montalban in Mallorie Ortega’s THE GIRL WHO LEFT HOME.

Life Imitates Art for Emy Coligado with Dream Role in Mallorie Ortega’s THE GIRL WHO LEFT HOME

Film Highlights: Opening Night film: The Girl Who Left Home: A live-action, musical feature film by writer/director/lyricist/producer Mallorie Ortega, and producer Angelo Santos. The film will be followed by  two short films, Looking Back, and Ode to a Seafaring People. Livestreamed Q&A on Saturday, March 20 @ 4:00pm PST/7:00pm EST. Click here for tickets.

Centerpiece film: Cane Fire: Pacific NW Premiere; Feature Documentary. Merging film history with the personal and political, filmmaker Anthony Banua-Simon offers an eye-opening look at the Hawaiian Island of Kauai. The film will be preceded by two short films, Where Smoke Rises and The Pākalā Kids. Livestreamed Q&A on Friday, March 26 @  6:30pm PST/9:30pm EST. Click here for tickets.
Closing Night Film: Coming Home AgainPNW Premiere. Feature film by Wayne Wang, based on a personal essay by Chang Rae Lee, and starring Justin Chon, Jackie Chung, and Christina July Kim.

Our film, When the World Was Young, directed by Garth Kravits and starring Virginia Wing, Jason Ma, Lia Chang and Jo Yang, will screen before Coming Home Again. Livestreamed Q&A on Sunday March 28 @ 4:00pm PST/7:00pm EST. Click here for tickets.

Garth Kravits’ Short Film WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Starring Virginia Wing, Jason Ma, Lia Chang and Jo Yang is an Official Selection of The 16th Annual DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon

Other film highlights include:

Water Like Fire: Mainland US premiere. Lovely, poetic, Hawaii-made indie film.

Sansei Granddaughters’ Journey 5 artists honor their ancestors and the 120,000 people ofJapanese ancestry who were unjustly incarcerated during WWII.

See You ThenFeature Narrative by award-winning filmmaker Mari Walker. After 15 years, Kris is finally ready to explain her transgender journey to college girlfriend Naomi (Lynn Chen). Screening with Kaye: This Life Around, the artistic journey of a musician rediscovering her music.

Take Out GirlFeature film by award-winning director Hisonni Mustafa, with an Asian American hip-hop soundtrack; screening with the world premiere of Blue Lanterns.

4 shorts programs: Emerging Voices, Japanese American Voices Past and Present, Voices of Family, Raising Our Voices

All-access passes ($48) and tickets for all films may be purchased online at www.disorientfilm.org. Check out the website for the full festival schedule, program, and film trailers.

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Video: Entertainment Weekly Presents Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella Reunion w/ Brandy, Whoopi Goldberg, Paolo Montalbán, Victor Garber, Bernadette Peters, Jason Alexander, and Veanne Cox

“Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella” is currently streaming exclusively on Disney+. The beloved televised movie musical stars Brandy in the title role and Whitney Houston as “Fairy Godmother” alongside Whoopi Goldberg (Queen Constantina), Victor Garber (King Maximillian), Natalie Desselle Reid (Minerva), Bernadette Peters (Stepmother), Paolo Montalbán (Prince Christopher), Jason Alexander (Lionel), and Veanne Cox (Calliope).

Jason Alexander, Paolo Montalbán, Brandy Norwood, Whitney Houston, Bernadette Peters, Natalie Desselle Reid, and Veanne Cox in Cinderella (Disney)

Originally premiering on November 2, 1997 to sixty million viewers during “The Wonderful World of Disney” on ABC,“Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella” became an instant fan favorite, beloved by critics and audiences alike and earning 7 Emmy Award nominations. Celebrated for its diverse representation, sweeping musical acts, and unforgettable song book, the 1997 film features an incredible array of beloved and original songs by the iconic songwriting duo Rodgers & Hammerstein, including “Impossible,” “In My Own Little Corner,” “Ten Minutes Ago,” “A Lovely Night,” “Do I Love You Because You’re Beautiful?” and more.

Cast members Brandy, Paolo Montalbán, Whoopi Goldberg, Victor Garber, Bernadette Peters, Jason Alexander and Veanne Cox gathered for a Entertainment Weekly reunion to reminisce with Marcus Jones and celebrate the release.

In “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella,” when Cinderella’s cruel stepmother prevents her from attending the Royal Ball, she gets some unexpected help from her Fairy Godmother. The 1997 movie was directed by Robert Iscove, written by Robert I. Freedman, and choreographed by Rob Marshall. Whitney Houston, Debra Martin Chase, Craig Zadan, and Neil Meron served as Executive Producers. Chris Montan was a Producer and Robyn Crawford was an Associate Producer.

Disney+ is the dedicated streaming home for movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and more. As part of Disney’s Media and Entertainment Distribution segment, Disney+ is available on most internet-connected devices and offers commercial-free programming with a variety of original feature-length films, documentaries, live-action and animated series, and short-form content. Alongside unprecedented access to Disney’s incredible library of film and television entertainment, the service is also the exclusive streaming home for the latest releases from The Walt Disney Studios. Disney+ is available as part of a bundle offer that gives subscribers access to Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+. Visit DisneyPlus.com to subscribe and/or learn more about the service.

About Richard Rodgers And Oscar Hammerstein II

After long and highly distinguished careers with other collaborators, Richard Rodgers (Composer, 1902-79) and Oscar Hammerstein II (Librettist/Lyricist, 1895-1960) joined forces in 1943 to create the most successful partnership in American Musical Theatre. Prior to joining forces, Rodgers collaborated with lyricist Lorenz Hart on musical comedies that epitomized wit and sophistication (Pal JoeyOn Your ToesBabes In Arms, and more), while Hammerstein brought new life to operetta and created the classic Show Boat with Jerome Kern.

Oklahoma!, the first Rodgers & Hammerstein musical, introduced an integrated form that became known as “the musical play.” Their shows that followed included CarouselSouth PacificThe King and I, and The Sound of Music. Collectively, the Rodgers & Hammerstein musicals have earned Tony, Oscar, Grammy, Emmy, Pulitzer and Olivier Awards. The Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization is a Concord Company, www.concord.com.

Playbill.com:Paolo Montalban Scrapbook: Prince Christopher Shares Personal Photos From Filming Cinderella Entertainmentweekly.com: Cinderella star Paolo Montalban reveals how Whoopi Goldberg and Victor Garber could be the prince’s parents

Broadwaydirect.com: CINDERELLA’S PAOLO MONTALBÁN ON THE IMPORTANCE OF ITS DIVERSE CAST

Broadwayworld.com: VIDEO: Paolo Montalbán Visits Backstage LIVE with Richard Ridge

Theatermania.com: A Waltz Down Memory Lane With Cinderella’s Prince, Paolo Montalbán

Asianjournal.com: ‘Cinderella’ Starring Brandy, Fil-Am Actor Paolo Montalban To Stream On Disney+