Category Archives: Film Festivals

Filmmaker Ang Lee to be honoured with BAFTA Fellowship at the 74th EE British Academy Film Awards on April 11

Ang Lee. Photo by Lia Chang
Ang Lee. Photo by Lia Chang

 The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) will honour multiple BAFTA award-winning filmmaker Ang Lee with the Fellowship at the 74th EE British Academy Film Awards on Sunday, April 11 on BBC One.

Lee is one of the world’s most pioneering and revered contemporary filmmakers whose ground-breaking films are highly acclaimed spanning multiple genres throughout his producing, writing and directing career.

Awarded annually, the Fellowship is the highest accolade bestowed by BAFTA upon an individual in recognition of an outstanding and exceptional contribution to film, games or television. Fellows previously honoured for their work in film include Charlie Chaplin, Alfred Hitchcock, Steven Spielberg, Sean Connery, Elizabeth Taylor, Stanley Kubrick, Anthony Hopkins, Laurence Olivier, Judi Dench, Vanessa Redgrave, Christopher Lee, Martin Scorsese, Alan Parker, Helen Mirren, Sidney Poitier, Mel Brooks, Sir Ridley Scott and Thelma Schoonmaker. Kathleen Kennedy received the Fellowship at last year’s Film Awards.

He first rose to prominence in the 1990s with his Taiwanese Father Knows Best comedy trilogy consisting of Pushing Hands, The Wedding Banquet and Eat Drink Man Woman, all of which he co-wrote, produced and directed.

These films received acclaim in the US and internationally, with The Wedding Banquet winning the Golden Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival as well as being nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars® and the latter leading to his first BAFTA nomination for Film Not in the English Language in 1995.

The following year, his first English language film, Sense and Sensibility starring Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet and Hugh Grant received major accolades including his first BAFTA Film Award for Best Film and another Berlin Golden Bear.

In 2000, Lee produced and directed the martial arts action-adventure Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, one of his most critically acclaimed cinematic masterpieces. The film dazzled global audiences, grossing over $213 million worldwide and holds the record for the highest grossing foreign language film in US history. The film was nominated for 14 BAFTA Film Awards and 10 Oscars®, winning four at each ceremony including a BAFTA for Director and Film not in the English Language and an Oscar® for Foreign Language Film.

Five years later, Lee was back on the global stage with his ground-breaking LGBTQ+ love story Brokeback Mountain starring Jake Gyllenhaal the late Heath Ledger. The film struck a chord with critics and audiences alike and was a turning point for queer cinema breaking into the mainstream. The film garnered nine BAFTA nominations and won four: Best Film, Director, Adapted Screenplay and Actor in a Supporting Role. He also won Best Director at the Oscars®.

Lee once again broke new ground with the visually stunning 3D CGI epic Life of Pi, pushing the limits of technology and storytelling to deliver an emotionally resonant tale about a teenage boy lost at sea with a fearsome Bengal tiger. His most successful film to date, the film grossed over $600 million worldwide and garnered further awards recognition: nine BAFTA Film Award nominations and a Children’s BAFTA win for Feature Film in 2013 as well as another Oscar® for Best Director.

His other directing credits include Lust, Caution, Taking Woodstock, Hulk, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk and most recently, Gemini Man.

Marc Samuelson, Chair of BAFTA’s Film Committee said: “Ang Lee is a master of his craft.  He is an incredibly versatile, daring and exceptional filmmaker who effortlessly moves between genres.  His films have been truly ground-breaking both in terms of their technical expertise and for the subject matters he tackles. His pioneering work in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Brokeback Mountain and Life of Pi and so many other titles not only showcase his technical ability and deep understanding of the filmmaking process, but also his ability to infuse every story – no matter how epic or simple – with humanizing characters we can all relate to on an emotional level through his exceptional work. We are thrilled to present him with BAFTA’s highest honour.” 

Ang Lee commented: “England has been particularly good to me in my career, especially with Sense and Sensibility, which was like a second film school for me. It’s a tremendous honour to receive the Bafta Academy Fellowship and be counted among such brilliant filmmakers.”

This year, the EE BAFTA Film Awards will be celebrated across the weekend of April 10-11.  Two shows, recognising the very best in film, will be broadcast virtually from London’s Royal Albert Hall. The first show, celebrating the craft of film, will be broadcast on Saturday, April 10 on BBC Two and BBC Two HD.  The show on Sunday, April 11 will be broadcast on BBC One and BBC One HD. Both programmes will be broadcast in all major territories around the world. 

About BAFTA

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) is a world-leading independent arts charity that brings the very best work in film, games and television to public attention and supports the growth of creative talent in the UK and internationally. Through its Awards ceremonies and year-round programme of learning events and initiatives – which includes workshops, masterclasses, scholarships, lectures and mentoring schemes in the UK, USA and Asia – BAFTA identifies and celebrates excellence, discovers, inspires and nurtures new talent, and enables learning and creative collaboration. For advice and inspiration from the best creative minds in working in film, games and television, visit www.bafta.org/guru. For more, visit www.bafta.org.

Garth Kravits’ WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Receives 2021 DisOrient Audience Choice AWARD for Best Short Narrative; Full List of Winners Includes Mari Walker’s SEE YOU THEN, Akira Boch and Tadashi Nakamura’s ATOMIC CAFE: THE NOISIEST CORNER IN J-TOWN, Wayne Wang’s COMING HOME AGAIN, Hui Tong and Kelly Ng’s CURTAIN UP!, Allan Zhang Tran’s VALLEY, Jaime Sunwoo’s EQUALITY TEA, Anthony Banua-Simon’s CANE FIRE, Ben Phantom, Kaia Rose’s FUGETSU-DO and Hisonni Mustafa’s TAKE OUT GIRL

The DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon went digital this year with a 10-day program featuring 46 films, available for viewing to a North American audience. 

Now in its 16th year, 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.

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

Our film, When the World Was Young, written and directed by Garth Kravits, won two awards including the 2021 DisOrient Audience Choice Award for Best Short Narrative  and a 2021 DisOrient Inspirational Artist Award for our star, Virginia Wing. The cast also features Lia Chang, Jason Ma, Jo Yang, Daniel Dunlow, Michelle Miller and Mark York.

Filmmakers Hui Tong and Kelly Ng’s documentary Curtain Up! won the 2021 DisOrient Best Feature Documentary Award and 2021 DisOrient Audience Choice Award for Best Feature Documentary. 

Synopsis: It’s show time at PS124, an elementary school in New York’s Chinatown, where students in the theater club are working on this season’s production of Frozen the Musical. Off stage, they navigate school, family expectations, and their own identities. As opening night and graduation loom, students find their voices through rehearsals and the continued support of teachers, family, and one another.

Pooya Mohseni and Lynn Chen in Mari Walker’s SEE YOU THEN

Mari Walker’s See You Then received the 2021 DisOrient Audience Choice Award for Best Feature Narrative. In See You ThenKris (Pooya Mohseni), a transgender computer programmer, and Naomi (Lynn Chen), an Asian-American performance artist, used to date in college (pre-transition). They haven’t seen each other for 15 years, since Kris left town without a word. Over the course of a one night encounter, they engage in a series of increasingly intimate and revealing conversations, before a shocking revelation sends everything spiraling out of control. See You Then focuses on the universal truth that no matter how much you change, a part of you will always stay the same.

Atomic Cafe: the Noisiest Corner in J-Town, directed by Akira Boch and Tadashi Nakamura, received the 2021 DisOrient Audience Choice Award for Best Short Documentary.  In the late 1970’s, a Japanese American, family-owned diner in Los Angeles’ J-Town became a lively gathering space for the L.A Punk Rock scene. Sansei “Atomic Nancy” took over her parents’ restaurant and cranked up the jukebox. From Japanese American locals to the biggest rock stars of the day, the Atomic Cafe became an important part of L.A.’s punk rock history.

Below are the previously announced winners, special mentions and nominees.

Best Feature Narrative: Coming Home Again; Filmmaker Wayne Wang

Synopsis: Based on a personal essay by first-generation Korean American author, Chang-rae Lee (Justin Chon) returns to San Francisco to care for his terminally ill mother. In this intimate snapshot set over the course of a single day, Chang-rae tends to his mother (Jackie Chung) and tries to recreate her Korean New Year’s dinner, while he grapples with family expectations and the pain of watching a loved one slip away.

 

Nominees: Coming Home Again,  See You ThenThe Girl Who Left Home

 

 

Best Feature Documentary: Curtain Up!; Filmmakers Hui Tong and Kelly Ng

Synopsis: It’s show time at PS124, an elementary school in New York’s Chinatown, where students in the theater club are working on this season’s production of Frozen the Musical. Off stage, they navigate school, family expectations, and their own identities. As opening night and graduation loom, students find their voices through rehearsals and the continued support of teachers, family, and one another.

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

Nominees: Cane Fire, Ghost Mountain, and Curtain Up!

Best Short Narrative: Valley; Filmmaker Allan Zhang Tran

Synopsis: Two friends growing up in the San Gabriel Valley ditch school and spend the day together, at a time when their lives are starting to take them down different paths.

 

Nominees: ValleyUnpotHello From TaiwanBlue LanternsRefrigerate After Opening, I Sound Asian

 

Equality Tea

Best Short Documentary: Equality Tea; Filmmaker Jaime Sunwoo

Synopsis: It’s time to take off the white gloves and spill the tea, that liberty and justice were not for all…

Throughout America, women organized tea parties for meetings and fundraisers to support the suffrage movement. The Woman’s Suffrage Party sold ceylon, young hyson, gunpowder, and oolong tea under their charitable brand “Equality Tea.” Yet the history of tea is steeped in inequality, driven by colonialism, war, and appropriation. In her short film, Equality Tea, Sunwoo brews tea while drawing parallels between the fraught histories of the tea trade and the suffrage movement.

Original score by Matt Chilton, based on a 1895 suffragist anthem by Augusta Gray Gunn. Commissioned by Park Avenue Armory and The Laundromat Project for 100 Years | 100 Women.

Nominees: Fugetsu-DoAn Object of MeritEquality TeaAtomic CaféKAYE: Next Life AroundKeep Saray Home

Jason D. Mak Award for Social Justice: Cane Fire; Filmmaker Anthony Banua-Simon

Synopsis: This documentary takes an expansive look at the history and present day reality of the Hawaiian island, Kauai. Contrasting Hollywood’s depiction of Hawaii as tropical paradise and a prime tourist destination with the realities of indigenous and working class residents, this is an eye-opening look at the forces that shaped Kauai through generations of colonialism, capitalism, and activism. 

Nominees: Cane FireEquality TeaTake Out GirlKeep Saray HomeSee You Then

DisOrient Inspirational Artist Award: Virginia Wing (When The World Was Young)

Synopsis: Returning home to care for their mother whose memory is deteriorating, two siblings find more of her past than they knew was there.

Virginia Wing. Photo by Lia Chang

Virginia Wing 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 can be seen in NYTW’s production of Three Sisters in 2021. Click on the  Performing Arts Legacy Website for more about Virginia Wing.

DisOrient Special Recognition for Outstanding Music Video: Ben Phantom (Saigon)

A son journeys to Vietnam with his father, 42 years after his father escaped as a refugee.

DisOrient Heritage Award: Fugetsu-Do; Filmmaker Kaia Rose

Synopsis: For over 115 years, this Japanese confectionary in Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo has served 5 generations of customers and is a testament to the resilience of its Japanese American owners. The beautiful cinematography and Brian Kito’s engaging storytelling are imbued with the spirit of this sweet shop.

DisOrient 2021: Raising Our Voices Award: Take Out Girl; Filmmaker Hisonni Mustafa

Synopsis: Tera Wong works in her family’s Chinese restaurant, located in an LA project called the “Low Bottoms.” When Tera delivers food to a local drug kingpin, she sees an opportunity that could pull her family and the restaurant out of financial turmoil. But as she’s pulled in deeper and the stakes get higher, she sees these dreams begin to crumble and learns that she might not be the only one keeping secrets.

Broadwayworld: WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Wins Audience Choice Award For Best Short Narrative At 16th DisOrient Asian American Film Festival

WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Star Virginia Wing Wins 2021 DisOrient Inspirational Artist Award; Full List of 2021 DisOrient Award Winners Includes COMING HOME AGAIN, CURTAIN UP!, VALLEY, EQUALITY TEA, CANE FIRE, Ben Phantom, FUGETSU-DO and TAKEOUT GIRL 

Lia Chang

Lia Chang 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.

 

WHEN THE WORLD WAS YOUNG Star Virginia Wing Wins 2021 DisOrient Inspirational Artist Award; Full List of 2021 DisOrient Award Winners Includes COMING HOME AGAIN, CURTAIN UP!, VALLEY, EQUALITY TEA, CANE FIRE, Ben Phantom, FUGETSU-DO and TAKEOUT GIRL

Thank you to the DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon for honoring Virginia Wing, our star of When the World Was Young, with the DisOrient Inspirational Artist Award.  It fed my soul to have a virtual reunion during the closing night program of the Festival with writer/director Garth Kravits, and my castmates Virginia Wing, Jason Ma and Jo Yang. 

The Q & A also featured Donald Young, the producer of Wayne Wang’s Coming Home Again, which won Best Feature Narrative.

Ben Phantom performed three songs before the awards ceremony and received the 2021 DisOrient Special Recognition for Outstanding Music Video for Saigon.

Because the festival was virtual this year due to the pandemic, I had the opportunity to watch almost all of DisOrient’s terrific lineup of 46 films and learned so much more from the Q & A’s with the filmmakers.

Britt Hua, Lia Chang, Widya Mak, Susan Hirata, Pamela Quan, Virginia Wing, Jason Mak, Trish Quan and Jason Ma

A special thanks to DisOrient Executive Director Pamela Quan and Program Director Susan Hirata, DisOrient founder Jason Mak and his wife, Widya Mak, Britt Hua, Trish Quan and Ron Miyaguchi.

Below are the winners, special mentions and nominees.

Best Feature Narrative: Coming Home Again; Filmmaker Wayne Wang

Synopsis: Based on a personal essay by first-generation Korean American author, Chang-rae Lee (Justin Chon) returns to San Francisco to care for his terminally ill mother. In this intimate snapshot set over the course of a single day, Chang-rae tends to his mother (Jackie Chung) and tries to recreate her Korean New Year’s dinner, while he grapples with family expectations and the pain of watching a loved one slip away. 

Nominees: Coming Home Again,  See You ThenThe Girl Who Left Home

Best Feature Documentary: Curtain Up!; Filmmakers Hui Tong and Kelly Ng

Synopsis: It’s show time at PS124, an elementary school in New York’s Chinatown, where students in the theater club are working on this season’s production of Frozen the Musical. Off stage, they navigate school, family expectations, and their own identities. As opening night and graduation loom, students find their voices through rehearsals and the continued support of teachers, family, and one another.

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

Nominees: Cane Fire, Ghost Mountain, and Curtain Up!

Best Short Narrative: Valley; Filmmaker Allan Zhang Tran

Synopsis: Two friends growing up in the San Gabriel Valley ditch school and spend the day together, at a time when their lives are starting to take them down different paths.

Nominees: ValleyUnpotHello From TaiwanBlue LanternsRefrigerate After Opening, I Sound Asian

Equality Tea

Best Short Documentary: Equality Tea; Filmmaker Jaime Sunwoo

Synopsis: It’s time to take off the white gloves and spill the tea, that liberty and justice were not for all…

Throughout America, women organized tea parties for meetings and fundraisers to support the suffrage movement. The Woman’s Suffrage Party sold ceylon, young hyson, gunpowder, and oolong tea under their charitable brand “Equality Tea.” Yet the history of tea is steeped in inequality, driven by colonialism, war, and appropriation. In her short film, Equality Tea, Sunwoo brews tea while drawing parallels between the fraught histories of the tea trade and the suffrage movement.

Original score by Matt Chilton, based on a 1895 suffragist anthem by Augusta Gray Gunn. Commissioned by Park Avenue Armory and The Laundromat Project for 100 Years | 100 Women.

Nominees: Fugetsu-DoAn Object of MeritEquality TeaAtomic CaféKAYE: Next Life AroundKeep Saray Home

Jason D. Mak Award for Social Justice: Cane Fire; Filmmaker Anthony Banua-Simon

Synopsis: This documentary takes an expansive look at the history and present day reality of the Hawaiian island, Kauai. Contrasting Hollywood’s depiction of Hawaii as tropical paradise and a prime tourist destination with the realities of indigenous and working class residents, this is an eye-opening look at the forces that shaped Kauai through generations of colonialism, capitalism, and activism. 

Nominees: Cane FireEquality TeaTake Out GirlKeep Saray HomeSee You Then

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

DisOrient Inspirational Artist Award: Virginia Wing (When The World Was Young)

Synopsis: Returning home to care for their mother whose memory is deteriorating, two siblings find more of her past than they knew was there.

Virginia Wing. Photo by Lia Chang

Virginia Wing 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.

DisOrient Special Recognition for Outstanding Music Video: Ben Phantom (Saigon)

A son journeys to Vietnam with his father, 42 years after his father escaped as a refugee.

DisOrient Heritage Award: Fugetsu-Do; Filmmaker Kaia Rose

Synopsis: For over 115 years, this Japanese confectionary in Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo has served 5 generations of customers and is a testament to the resilience of its Japanese American owners. The beautiful cinematography and Brian Kito’s engaging storytelling are imbued with the spirit of this sweet shop.

DisOrient 2021: Raising Our Voices Award: Take Out Girl; Filmmaker Hisonni Mustafa

Synopsis: Tera Wong works in her family’s Chinese restaurant, located in an LA project called the “Low Bottoms.” When Tera delivers food to a local drug kingpin, she sees an opportunity that could pull her family and the restaurant out of financial turmoil. But as she’s pulled in deeper and the stakes get higher, she sees these dreams begin to crumble and learns that she might not be the only one keeping secrets.

TBA: Audience Choice Feature Documentary Award, Audience Choice Feature Narrative Award, Audience Choice Short Documentary Award, and the Audience Choice Short Narrative Award

DisOrient is the premiere Asian American independent film festival of Oregon, celebrating films with authentic Asian Pacific American voices, histories and stories. We highlight social justice themes that translate to universal human experiences. We promote representation, diversity and inclusion to broaden the narrative of who is American, and to strengthen and build community.

Lia Chang

Lia Chang 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.

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

Save the Date for CAAMFest 2021: May 13-23, 2021

The Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) is pleased to announce that CAAMFest 2021 will take place May 13-23, 2021. CAAM will continue to create cultural connections for these times through a mostly online festival of film, food, and music with drive-in programs. Entering its 39th year, CAAMFest will continue to be an anchor event celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. Stay tuned to their websiteFacebookInstagram, and Twitter for announcements about CAAMFest highlighted films, Opening Night and Closing Night programs, and more.

Watch the Q&As and other highlights from CAAMFest FORWARD and CAAMFest Online: Heritage at Home on their YouTube Channel.***

CAAMFest Call for Entries Last Deadline is February 26 – Submit Today

The final CAAMFest 2021 Call for Entries deadline is Friday, February 26. Submit your project at FilmFreeway for the chance to be part of the nation’s premier festival launching point for Asian American independent filmmakers. Noted CAAMFest alumni include Alice Wu, Grace Lee, Gurinder Chadha, Justin Chon, and Wayne Wang. For questions or more information about the Call for Entries, visit our website and FilmFreeway page, or email the Festival team at festival@caamedia.org.

CAAM Seeks Applicants for CAAMFest 2021 Job Openings – Learn More and Apply TodayCAAM is seeking applicants for several roles that will support the production and execution of our annual film, music, and food festival, CAAMFest. The available positions include: Festival Operations Manager, Digital Graphic Designer and Video Editor, Guest Services Coordinator, Marketing Assistant, and Box Office Associate. For more information and to apply, visit our website or email jobs@caamedia.org.

CAAM Seeks Applicants for Development Intern (or Volunteer) – Apply by February 26

CAAM seeks a motivated and outgoing Development Intern (or volunteer) who is passionate about the Asian American community and media arts to assist CAAM’s Development team. The Membership and Fundraising Projects Intern (or volunteer) will help with CAAM’s member outreach efforts and fundraising activities. To apply, email a resume and cover letter to Jennifer Chu at jobs@caamedia.org with “Development Intern – Membership & Fundraising Projects” in the subject line. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until February 26, 2021. Learn more here.

Apply for Funding from CAAM’s Documentary Fund by March 15
CAAM’s Documentary Fund is accepting submissions for documentary projects until March 15, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. PST. With support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), CAAM provides production funding to independent producers creating documentary films that illuminate the Asian American experience for a national audience via public television. Documentaries are eligible for production or post-production funding and must be intended for public media. Awards typically range between $10,000 and $50,000. Learn more and apply here.

Yuh-Jung Youn

Learn More about Veteran Korean Actor Yuh-Jung Youn and Her Work in Minari
Veteran Korean actor Yuh-Jung Youn plays the character of Grandma Soonja in director Lee Isaac Chung’s groundbreaking new film Minari. Learn more about Youn and her extraordinary work on the film, including how she and Lee Isaac Chung created the Grandma Soonja character together, in Paula Young Lee’s interview with Youn on our blogMinari is in select theaters now and on demand February 26. Purchase screening tickets at the A24 Virtual Screening Room.

Meet the Six Filmmakers Selected for the Inaugural The Sauce Fellowship
CAAM is proud to partner with NOVAC to support the professional development of next generation Asian American filmmakers in the American South through The Sauce Fellowship. We have selected Nash Consing, Melanie Ho, Kei Matsumoto, Bree Nieves, Sana Saif, and Sarah Tang for the inaugural cohort of this program. During the nine-month program the fellows will receive resources, networking opportunities, workshops, mentorship, and connection to the distribution platforms of public media. This program is made possible by the generous support of the Ford Foundation.

Meet the Filmmakers Selected by CAAM, Firelight Media, and Reel South for the Hindsight Project
CAAM, Firelight Media, and Reel South have selected the following filmmakers for the Hindsight Project: Amman Abbasi, Anissa Latham, Arleen Cruz-Alicea, Dilsey Davis, Kiyoko McCrae, and Zac Manuel. They will create short films for a new digital series exploring the lived experiences of communities of color in the American South and in Puerto Rico that reflect the migrations and movements throughout the complicated history of these regions. Learn more about the filmmakers and the project on our blog.

San Francisco Symphony Presents Chinese New Year Virtual Celebration on February 20
The San Francisco (SF) Symphony is proud to present the Chinese New Year Virtual Celebration: Year of the Ox, a digital concert event featuring host Joan Chen, SF Symphony musicians, and special guests. This event highlights themes of prosperity, unity, and growth in a program celebrating China’s vibrant musical traditions, past and present. This Chinese New Year Virtual Celebration will be available for free on SFSymphony+ and broadcast on NBC Bay Area at 4 p.m. on February 20; the program will rebroadcast February 27 at 4 p.m. on NBC Bay Area and February 21 and 27 at 3:30 p.m. on KTSF 26. Explore SFSymphony+ here.

Submit Your Short Film to HBO’s 2021 APA Visionaries Short Film Competition by April 1
HBO is seeking entries for its 2021 Asian Pacific American (APA) Visionaries Short Film Competition. Inspired by the theme “Taking the Lead,” films should portray Asian Pacific Americans as being at the forefront of a given narrative, embracing the spirits of trailblazers, heroes, and luminaries through a unique lens. Submissions will be accepted at FilmFreeway until April 1, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. PST. Learn more and submit your work here.

CAAM Likes
▪ Sentient.Art.Film presents My Sight is Lined With Visions: 1990s Asian American Film & Video, until January 25, 2022. Now in its second year, the program spotlights rare, hard to watch, underground, and transgressive work. Learn more and buy tickets here.

▪ Working Films is accepting applications to its Impact Kickstart program until March 22. The program helps underrepresented filmmakers create strategic goals for impact and specific plans to engage future partners, funders, and audiences in meaningful ways. Two films will be selected for Impact Kickstart in 2021. Learn more and apply here.

▪ If you missed Susan Lieu’s presentation of her solo show 140 Lbs during CAAMFest 37, you can watch a virtual screening of it and its sequel Over 140 Lbs until February 21. Learn more and buy tickets on Susan Lieu’s website.

▪ UCLA Asian American Studies Center, in partnership with UCLA Film & Television Archive, presents its 2021 Film Festival. Over two weekends (February 19-21 and February 26-28), you can watch online programming featuring powerful imagery and poignant commentary about meaningful issues facing Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. Register for free tickets here.