Category Archives: Press Release

PARASITE Receives The Actor for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture; Complete list of winners

LOS ANGELES – The Screen Actors Guild Awards® presented its coveted Actor® statuettes for the outstanding motion picture and television performances of 2019 at the 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards®, held Sunday, Jan. 19 at the Los Angeles Shrine Auditorium & Expo Hall.

Honored with individual awards were Joaquin Phoenix, Renée Zellweger, Brad Pitt and Laura Dern for performances in motion pictures, and Sam Rockwell, Michelle Williams, Peter Dinklage, Jennifer Aniston, Tony Shalhoub and Phoebe Waller-Bridge for performances in television. The Screen Actors Guild Awards originated awards for the outstanding performances by a motion picture cast and by television drama and comedy ensembles. The Actor® for a motion picture cast performance went this year to “Parasite,” while the Actors® for television drama and comedy ensemble performances went this year to “The Crown” and “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.” This is the first time that the top prize has been awarded to a foreign-language film. Click below for the video of their acceptance speech.

26th SAG Awards Ambassador Logan Browning and SAG-AFTRA Foundation President Courtney B. Vance revealed the honorees for outstanding action performances during the official live pre-show PEOPLE, Entertainment Weekly & TNT Red Carpet Live: 26th Screen Actors Guild Awards. The stunt ensemble from “Avengers: End Game” was honored for film and the stunt ensemble from “Game of Thrones” was honored for television.

Leonardo DiCaprio presented Robert De Niro with the 56th Life Achievement Award. The SAG Awards continued its traditions of presenting a montage saluting the work of SAG-AFTRA members and a filmed “In Memoriam” tribute honoring the union’s members lost during 2019.

PEOPLE hosted the official Post-Awards Gala for the 24th year. This exclusive event, which was held immediately following the SAG Awards honors the charitable efforts of actors in their communities. In addition, Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C), a division of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), will make a $125,000 grant to the SAG-AFTRA Foundation’s Assistance Programs which support actors who suffer from catastrophic illness or injury, including cancer, as well as emergency financial assistance.

Prior to the telecast, SAG-AFTRA Foundation President Courtney B. Vance announced that industry leaders and philanthropists Jeffrey and Marilyn Katzenberg have pledged a $250,000 matching gift to the Foundation. Vance challenged the 250 attending nominees to donate $1,000 each to secure the match, adding $500,000 to the Foundation’s vital safety net for SAG-AFTRA artists.

Nominees chosen by their respective SAG Awards film and television nominating committees were announced on Dec. 11, 2019. Two nominating panels — one for television and one for film — each composed of 2,500 randomly selected union members from across the United States, chose this year’s nominees. Final voting information was open to 121,923 SAG-AFTRA members in good standing. Balloting closed at noon on Friday, Jan. 17. Integrity Voting Systems, the Awards’ official election firm, sealed the results until they were announced live during the 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

The complete list of recipients for the 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards®follows:

The 26th ANNUAL SCREEN ACTORS GUILD AWARDS® RECIPIENTS

The Motion Picture Recipients are:

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
JOAQUIN PHOENIX / Arthur Fleck – “JOKER”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
RENÉE ZELLWEGER / Judy Garland – “JUDY”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
BRAD PITT / Cliff Booth – “ONCE UPON A TIME…IN HOLLYWOOD”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
LAURA DERN / Nora Fanshaw – “MARRIAGE STORY”

Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
PARASITE
CHANG HYAE JIN / Chung Sook
CHO YEO JEONG / Yeon Kyo
CHOI WOO SHIK / Ki Woo
JUNG HYEON JUN / Da Song
JUNG ZISO / Da Hye
LEE JUNG EUN / Moon Gwang
LEE SUN KYUN / Dong Ik
PARK MYUNG HOON / Geun Se
PARK SO DAM / Ki Jung
SONG KANG HO / Ki Taek

Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture
AVENGERS: ENDGAME

The Television Recipients are:

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series
SAM ROCKWELL / Bob Fosse – “FOSSE/VERDON”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Limited Series
MICHELLE WILLIAMS / Gwen Verdon – “FOSSE/VERDON”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series
PETER DINKLAGE / Tyrion Lannister – “GAME OF THRONES”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series
JENNIFER ANISTON / Alex Levy – “THE MORNING SHOW”

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
TONY SHALHOUB / Abe Weissman – “THE MARVELOUS MRS. MAISEL”

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series
PHOEBE WALLER-BRIDGE / Fleabag – “FLEABAG”

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
THE CROWN
MARION BAILEY / Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother
HELENA BONHAM CARTER / Princess Margaret
OLIVIA COLMAN / Queen Elizabeth II
CHARLES DANCE / Lord Mountbatten
BEN DANIELS / Lord Snowdon
ERIN DOHERTY / Princess Anne
CHARLES EDWARDS / Martin Charteris
TOBIAS MENZIES / Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh
JOSH O’CONNOR / Prince Charles
SAM PHILLIPS / Equerry
DAVID RINTOUL / Michael Adeane
JASON WATKINS / Harold Wilson

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series
THE MARVELOUS MRS. MAISEL
CAROLINE AARON / Shirley Maisel
ALEX BORSTEIN / Susie Myerson
RACHEL BROSNAHAN / Midge Maisel
MARIN HINKLE / Rose Weissman
STEPHANIE HSU / Mei
JOEL JOHNSTONE / Archie Cleary
JANE LYNCH / Sophie Lennon
LEROY McCLAIN / Shy Baldwin
KEVIN POLLAK / Moishe Maisel
TONY SHALHOUB / Abe Weissman
MATILDA SZYDAGIS / Zelda
BRIAN TARANTINA / Jackie
MICHAEL ZEGEN / Joel Maisel

Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Comedy or Drama Series
GAME OF THRONES

The 56th Annual SAG Life Achievement Award
Robert De Niro

Diane Paragas’ YELLOW ROSE Starring Eva Noblezada, Lea Salonga, Princess Punzalan, Dale Watson, Gustavo Gomez, Libby Villari and Liam Booth, Sweeps Grand Jury and Audience Awards after Successful Film Festival Run; Final Screening Tonight at HIFF in Kauai at Waimea Theater

Award-winning feature film Yellow Rose, directed by Diane Paragas, captivated audiences during a successful North American film festival run this month. The last screening of year is at the Hawaii International Film Festival in Kauai  at the Waimea Theater tonight at 7pm. Producers Karen Elizaga and Rey Cuerdo will be in attendance for the screening.

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Eva Noblezada and Dale Watson in YELLOW ROSE

The immigration drama has been hailed for its compelling storytelling and moving original songs, receiving two Grand Jury Awards for Best Narrative Feature and four Audience Awards in the past two weeks:

● Best Feature, Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival

Producer Cecilia R. Mejia accepts the Best Narrative Feature Award at the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival. Photo credit: PAAFF

● Best Narrative Feature, Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival

Producer Cecilia R. Mejia accepts the People’s Choice Award Best Overall Feature at the Vancouver Asian Film Festival. Photo credit: VAFF

● People’s Choice Award Best Overall Feature, Vancouver Asian Film Festival

● Best Narrative Feature – Audience Award, Hawaii International Film Festival

Diane Paragas with her daughter Sophie Zimny at the Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF). Photo credit: Yellow Rose

● Audience Award, Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival

Princess Punzalan at the Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival. Photo credit: Connie Tsang

● Audience Award, San Diego Asian Film Festival

“We have had the great honor of sharing Yellow Rose with a variety of audiences and the responses have been very overwhelming,” says Paragas. “The outpouring of love and support from moviegoers and festival juries has been deeply moving and encouraging as we continue to garner support for our historic theatrical release.”

Yellow Rose is a timely story about a Filipino teen from a small Texas town who fights to pursue her dreams as a country music performer while facing the threat of deportation. The film was recently acquired by Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions (SPWA) for worldwide distribution and will be distributed in the Philippines by ABS CBN.

“The fact that this film is by and about Filipino Americans, such a rarity in cinema, is yet more proof that there are audiences out there who want to see stories like this in Hollywood,” says Deanna Wong, Executive Director, Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival.

This marks a total of 14 festival awards for the film since it premiered in May at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival — including Best Breakout Performance presented to its leading actress, two-time Tony Award nominee Eva Noblezada.

Yellow Rose was one of our most powerful films at PAAFF this year. It is groundbreaking and is a story that is not often depicted in mainstream American films. We are extremely excited to see this film get a wide theatrical release,” says Selena Yip, Festival Director, Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival.

About Yellow Rose
Directed by Diane Paragas, Yellow Rose tells the story of a headstrong Filipino teen, from a small Texas town, fighting to pursue her country music dreams while facing the threat of deportation. The film stars Tony Award Nominee Eva Noblezada (Hadestown, Miss Saigon), Tony Award Winner and Disney Legend Lea Salonga (Once on this Island, Miss Saigon), Princess Punzalan (Mula Sa Puso), Dale Watson (Friday Night Lights), Gustavo Gomez (“The Walking Dead”), Libby Villari (Boyhood), and Liam Booth (Ghosts Never Sleep).

The film is written by Diane Paragas, Annie Howell, and Celena Cipriaso. The film’s producers include Cecilia R. Mejia, Rey Cuerdo, Orian Williams, Diane Paragas, Executive Producers Cinematografo Originals and Karen Elizaga, and Co-Producers Jeremiah Abraham, Thea Kerman, and Courtney Jones.

Diane Paragas is managed by LBI Entertainment and is represented by Morris Yorn Barnes & Levine.

Diane Paragas’ Multiple Award-Winning Film YELLOW ROSE, Starring Eva Noblezada, Dale Watson, Princess Punzalan and Lea Salonga, to Screen in Boston, Austin, Philadelphia, San Diego, Vancouver, Toronto, Oahu and Kauai

Lea Salonga, Princess Punzalan, Jose Llana and More Celebrate at 42nd Asian American International Film Festival’s Opening Night screening of Diane Paragas’ YELLOW ROSE at Asia Society

Lia Chang. Photo by Garth Kravits. Photo by 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2019 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at liachangpr@gmail.com

Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions Acquires Diane Paragas’ Award-Winning Independent Film YELLOW ROSE Starring Eva Noblezada, Lea Salonga, Princess Punzalan, Dale Watson, Gustavo Gomez, Libby Villari and Liam Booth

Eva Noblezada in YELLOW ROSE

Culver City, CA, October 24, 2019 – Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions (SPWA) announced today that it has acquired all worldwide rights, excluding the Philippines, to the film Yellow Rose, directed by Diane Paragas in her narrative feature debut.

Eva Noblezada and Dale Watson in YELLOW ROSE

Yellow Rose is a timely story about a Filipino teen from a small Texas town who fights to pursue her dreams as a country music performer while facing the threat of deportation. The film stars two-time Tony Award Nominee Eva Noblezada (Hadestown, Miss Saigon) in her feature film debut, Tony Award Winner Lea Salonga (Once on this Island, Miss Saigon), Princess Punzalan (Mula Sa Puso), Dale Watson (Friday Night Lights), Gustavo Gomez (“The Walking Dead”), Libby Villari (Boyhood), and Liam Booth (Ghosts Never Sleep).

Eva Noblezada and Princess Punzalan in YELLOW ROSE

Eva Noblezada received her most recent Tony nomination for her portrayal of Eurydice in Hadestown, which won 8 Tony awards including Best Musical.  She  received her first nomination for portraying Kim in the revival of Miss Saigon.  Lea Salonga won the Tony Award for her portrayal of the same role in the original production of Miss Saigon.

Yellow Rose has been a labor of passion for over 15 years and I’m thrilled that we can now share this very relevant story with the world,” says Paragas. “We have the added honor of representing the real experiences of Filipino Americans, Asian Americans, and all immigrants seeking a better life in America.”

Karen Elizaga, Diane Paragas, Annie Howell, Cecilia R. Mejia, Kat Evasco, Loida Nicolas Lewis and Jeremiah Abraham. Photo by Lia Chang

Yellow Rose features original songs developed for the film, written and composed by Watson, Paragas, Noblezada, and Thia Megia. The film is written by Diane Paragas, Annie Howell, and Celena Cipriaso, based on a story written by Paragas and Andy Bienen. The film’s producers include Lead Producer Cecilia R. Mejia, Rey Cuerdo, Orian Williams and Paragas. Executive Producers include Carlo Katigbak, Olivia De Jesus, John D. Lazatin, and Juan Miguel Sevilla from ABS-CBN Global and Cinematografo Originals, Karen Elizaga, Gail Alvarez, Victor Alvarez, and Dale Watson. Co-Producers include Jeremiah Abraham, Courtney Jones, and Thea Kerman.

The film premiered at this year’s Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival where it received the Grand Jury Award and the Breakout Performance Award for Noblezada’s outstanding performance.

Already having won a total of five Grand Jury Awards, the film is the closing night selection of the Boston Asian American Film Festival on Sunday, October 27 at 6:00PM; a marquee presentation of the Austin Film Festival on Monday, October 28 at 7:40PM; an official selection of the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival on Friday, November 8 at 8:00PM; an official selection of the San Diego Asian Film Festival on Saturday, November 9 at 3:45PM; the closing night selection of the Vancouver Asian Film Festival on Sunday, November 10 at 7:30PM; the closing night selection of the Toronto Reel Asian Film Festival on November 15 at 7:00PM., an official selection of the Houston Cinema Arts Festival on November 15 at 7:30PM, and is an official selection of the Hawaii International Film Festival in Oahu on November 16 at  6:00PM and in Kauai on November 21 at 7:30 PM.

Leslie Lewis, Liam Booth, Producer Karen Elizaga, Co-producer Jeremiah Abraham, Director/Writer Diane Paragas, Lea Salonga, Princess Punzalan, Lead Producer Cecilia R. Mejia, Producer Orian Williams at 42nd Asian American International Film Festival's Opening Night screening of YELLOW ROSE at Asia Society in New York on July 25, 2019. Photo by Lia Chang
Leslie Lewis, Liam Booth, Producer Karen Elizaga, Co-producer Jeremiah Abraham, Director/Writer Diane Paragas, Lea Salonga, Princess Punzalan, Lead Producer Cecilia R. Mejia, Producer Orian Williams at 42nd Asian American International Film Festival’s Opening Night screening of YELLOW ROSE at Asia Society in New York on July 25, 2019. Photo by Lia Chang

Yellow Rose will be distributed in theaters in the Philippines by ABS-CBN.

Diane Paragas is managed by LBI Entertainment and is represented by Morris Yorn Barnes & Levine.

ABOUT SONY PICTURES WORLDWIDE ACQUISITIONS
Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions (SPWA) is a Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) company. Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture production, acquisition and distribution; television production, acquisition and distribution; television networks; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; and development of new entertainment products, services and technologies. www.sonypictures.com

Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions

Diane Paragas’ Multiple Award-Winning Film YELLOW ROSE, Starring Eva Noblezada, Dale Watson, Princess Punzalan and Lea Salonga, to Screen in Boston, Austin, Philadelphia, San Diego, Vancouver, Toronto, Oahu and Kauai

Lea Salonga, Princess Punzalan, Jose Llana and More Celebrate at 42nd Asian American International Film Festival’s Opening Night screening of Diane Paragas’ YELLOW ROSE at Asia Society

Lia Chang. Photo by Garth Kravits. Photo by 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2019 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at liachangpr@gmail.com

Apollo Theater Presents an Advanced Free Screening of The HBO Documentary Film THE APOLLO on October 4

Harlem, NY – (September 16, 2019) – The Apollo Theater is presenting a free screening of the HBO Documentary Film The Apollo on Friday October 4th at 7:00 p.m., in advance of its HBO premiere. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with members of the creative team.

Directed by Oscar® and Emmy® winner Roger Ross Williams. The Apollo chronicles the unique history and contemporary legacy of the Apollo Theater over the last 85 years from a refuge for marginalized artists to being a hallowed hall of black excellence and empowerment. The film weaves together archival clips of music, comedy and dance performances; behind-the-scenes verité footage of the team that makes the theater run; and interviews with such artists as Common, Jamie Foxx, Savion Glover, Patti LaBelle, Smokey Robinson and Pharrell Williams. In addition to the examination of its archives, the film offers an in-depth look at the present-day venue, spotlighting the 2018 multi-media stage adaptation of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ acclaimed book “Between the World and Me” as it comes together on the theater’s grand stage. In the film, Williams explores not only the struggle of black lives in America, but the role that art plays in that struggle, and the essential part the Apollo continues to play in the cultural conversation, lighting the path forward. Produced by Lisa Cortes, Jeanne Elfant Festa and Cassidy Hartmann. Executive produced by Nigel Sinclair, Dan Cogan, Nicholas Ferrall and Julie Goldman.

Last April, The Apollo made its debut on the opening night of the prestigious Tribeca Film Festival at the Theater. Notable attendees included Robert DeNiro, Smokey Robinson, Angela Bassett, BeBe Winans, Michael Keegan Key, Questlove, Dapper Dan, and Bevy Smith.

TICKET INFO
Tickets for The Apollo screening are free and open to the public. Advance tickets for this event are sold out. A limited number of standby tickets may be released on October 4. Standby tickets will be available on a first come, first-served basis in-person only at the Apollo Theater box office beginning at 6:30pm.

About the Apollo Theater
The legendary Apollo Theater—the soul of American culture—plays a vital role in cultivating emerging artists and launching legends. Since its founding, the Apollo has served as a center of innovation and a creative catalyst for Harlem, the city of New York, and the world.

With music at its core, the Apollo’s programming extends to dance, theater, spoken word, and more. This includes special programs such as the blockbuster concert Bruno Mars Live at the Apollo100: The Apollo Celebrates Ella, the annual Africa Now! Festival, the New York premiere of the opera We Shall Not Be Moved, and the world premiere of Between the World and Me. The Apollo is a performing arts presenting organization that also produces festivals and large-scale dance and music works organized around a set of core initiatives that celebrate and extend the Apollo’s legacy through a contemporary lens; global festivals including the Women of the World (WOW) Festival and Breakin’ Convention, international and U.S.-based artist presentations focused on a specific theme; and special projects, multidisciplinary collaborations with partner organizations.

Since introducing the first Amateur Night contests in 1934, the Apollo Theater has served as a testing ground for new artists working across a variety of art forms and has ushered in the emergence of many new musical genres—including jazz, swing, bebop, R&B, gospel, blues, soul, and hip-hop. Among the countless legendary performers who launched their careers at the Apollo are D’Angelo, Lauryn Hill, H.E.R., Machine Gun Kelly, Miri Ben Ari, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday, James Brown, Gladys Knight, Luther Vandross, and Stevie Wonder; and the Apollo’s forward-looking artistic vision continues to build on this legacy.

Support
The Apollo’s 2019-2020 season is made possible by leadership support from Coca-Cola, Citi, Ford Foundation, Howard Gilman Foundation, and the Jerome L. Greene Arts Access Fund in the New York Community Trust.

Public support for the Apollo Theater is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. 

Tong War Drama Series WARRIOR, Based on the Writings of Martial Arts Legend Bruce Lee, Debuts April 5 on CINEMAX

The CINEMAX drama series WARRIOR begins its ten-episode season FRIDAY, APRIL 5 (10:00–11:00 p.m. ET/PT).  Filmed in Cape Town, South Africa, the show is based on writings of martial arts legend Bruce Lee, and created and executive produced by Jonathan Tropper (CINEMAX’s “Banshee”) under Tropper Ink Productions and Justin Lin on behalf of Perfect Storm Entertainment.

WARRIOR is a gritty, action-packed crime drama set during the brutal Tong Wars of San Francisco’s Chinatown in the second half of the 19th century. The series follows Ah Sahm, a martial arts prodigy who emigrates from China to San Francisco under mysterious circumstances and becomes a hatchet man for one of Chinatown’s most powerful tongs (Chinese organized crime family).

Led by Andrew Koji, who plays Ah Sahm, series regulars also include Kieran Bew, Olivia Cheng, Dianne Doan, Dean Jagger, Langley Kirkwood, Hoon Lee, Christian McKay, Joe Taslim, Jason Tobin, Joanna Vanderham, Tom Weston-Jones and Perry Yung.

WARRIOR is produced for CINEMAX by Perfect Storm Entertainment, Tropper Ink Productions and Bruce Lee Entertainment; created and executive produced by Jonathan Tropper. Justin Lin and Danielle Woodrow executive produce on behalf of Perfect Storm Entertainment. Shannon Lee executive produces for Bruce Lee Entertainment. Executive produced by Brad Kane and co-executive produced by Richard Sharkey. Pilot was executive produced by Assaf Bernstein.

 

“Crazy Rich Asians” in Theaters August 15

Jon M. Chu (“Now You See Me 2”) directed the contemporary romantic comedy “Crazy Rich Asians,” based on the acclaimed worldwide bestseller by Kevin Kwan.

The story follows New Yorker Rachel Chu (Constance Wu) as she accompanies her longtime boyfriend, Nick Young (Henry Golding), to his best friend’s wedding in Singapore. Excited about visiting Asia for the first time but nervous about meeting Nick’s family, Rachel is unprepared to learn that Nick has neglected to mention a few key details about his life. Not only is he the scion of one of the country’s wealthiest families, but also one of its most sought-after bachelors. Being on Nick’s arm puts a target on Rachel’s back, with jealous socialites and, worse, Nick’s own disapproving mother (Michelle Yeoh) taking aim. It soon becomes clear that the only thing crazier than love is family, in this funny and romantic story sure to ring true for audiences everywhere.

“Crazy Rich Asians” features an international cast of stars, led by Constance Wu (“Fresh Off the Boat”), Gemma Chan (“Humans”), Lisa Lu (“2012”), and Awkwafina (“Ocean’s 8,” “Neighbors 2”), with Ken Jeong (the “Hangover” films”) and Michelle Yeoh (“Star Trek: Discovery,” “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”). The large starring ensemble also includes Henry Golding, making his feature film debut, Sonoya Mizuno (“La La Land”), Chris Pang (“Marco Polo”), Jimmy O. Yang (“Silicon Valley”), comedian Ronny Chieng (“The Daily Show”), Remy Hii (“Marco Polo”), and Nico Santos (“Superstore”).

Color Force’s Nina Jacobson (“The Hunger Games” films) and Brad Simpson (“World War Z”), and Ivanhoe Pictures’ John Penotti (“Hell or High Water”) produced the film, with executive producers Tim Coddington, Kevin Kwan, Robert Friedland, and Sidney Kimmel. The screenplay is by Peter Chiarelli and Adele Lim, based on the novel Crazy Rich Asians, by Kwan. The creative filmmaking team included director of photography Vanja Černjul (“Marco Polo”), production designer Nelson Coates (“Fifty Shades Darker”), costume designer Mary Vogt (“Kong: Skull Island”) and editor Myron Kerstein (“Going in Style”). The music was composed by Brian Tyler (“Avengers: Age of Ultron”). “Crazy Rich Asians” was filmed entirely on location in Singapore and Malaysia. It is set for release on Wednesday, August 15, 2018. Warner Bros. Pictures presents, in association with SK Global and Starlight Culture, a Color Force/Ivanhoe Pictures/Electric Somewhere Production, a Jon M. Chu Film, “Crazy Rich Asians.” The film will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Entertainment Company. It is rated PG-13.

 

ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL directed by Steve James Receives Oscar® Nomination for Best Documentary Feature

January 23, 2018 – Los Angeles The FRONTLINE (PBS) documentary ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL directed by award-winning filmmaker Steve James (Life ItselfHoop Dreams) and produced by Mark Mitten (Life Itself) and Julie Goldman (Life Animated,  Buck), has been nominated for an Academy Award® in the Documentary Feature category.

This nomination marks the first Academy Award® nomination for Best Documentary Feature for Steve James; Mark Mitten’s first Academy Award® nomination; and Julie Goldman’s second Academy Award® nomination for Best Documentary Feature. For the acclaimed PBS documentary series FRONTLINE produced out of WGBH/Boston, this is a first Academy Award® nomination.

Co-producer Fenell Doremus, Producer Mark Mitten, Jill Sung, Vera Sung, Chanterelle Sung, Heather Sung, Producer Julie Goldman, Director Steve James. Photo by Lia Chang
Co-producer Fenell Doremus, Producer Mark Mitten, Jill Sung, Vera Sung, Chanterelle Sung, Heather Sung, Producer Julie Goldman, Director Steve James. Photo by Lia Chang

ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL chronicles the Chinese-American Sung family’s fight to clear their names after their small bank in New York City’s Chinatown became the only U.S. bank indicted for mortgage fraud related to the 2008 financial crisis. The documentary follows how the bank’s indictment and subsequent trial forced the Sung family to defend themselves — and their bank’s legacy in the Chinatown community — over the course of a five-year legal battle.

Thomas Sung, Hwei Lin Sung, Heather Sung, Chanterelle Sung, Vera Sung and Jill Sung. Photo by Lia Chang
Thomas Sung, Hwei Lin Sung, Heather Sung, Chanterelle Sung, Vera Sung and Jill Sung. Photo by Lia Chang

“I’m so pleased and grateful. This is such a wonderful recognition for all of the ABACUS team, but especially for the Sung family. It has been a joy being able to follow their story,” said director James. 

Jill Sung, Vera Sung, Chanterelle Sung, Heather Sung and Director Steve James. Photo by Lia Chang
Jill Sung, Vera Sung, Chanterelle Sung, Heather Sung and Director Steve James. Photo by Lia Chang

One of 2017’s most critically-acclaimed documentaries, ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL was previously nominated for “Best Documentary” by both the National Board of Review and by The Chicago Film Critics Association, and was awarded “Best Political Documentary” by the Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards last November. Steve James is a nominee for Best Director by the DGA for his work on ABACUS.

The New York Times called ABACUS “a classic underdog tale,” and The Hollywood Reporter called it “both an affirmation and an indictment of the American Dream.”

The 90th Academy Awards® nominations were announced today by the Academy. Also nominated in the Documentary Feature category was the POV documentary, Last Men in Aleppo. This year’s Oscars ceremony will take place Sunday, March 4, 2018.

ABOUT ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL 
ABACYS SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL is a Mitten Media, Motto Pictures, and Kartemquin Films Production for WGBH/FRONTLINE and Independent Television Service (ITVS). It is co-presented with the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM). The director is Steve James. The producers are Mark Mitten and Julie Goldman. The co-producers are Fenell Doremus and Nick Verbitsky. The executive producers are Gordon Quinn, Christopher Clements, Betsy Steinberg and Justine Nagan. The executive producer of FRONTLINE is Raney Aronson-Rath. The executive producer of ITVS is Sally Jo Fifer.

Steve James, Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and More Attend “Abacus: Small Enough to Jail” Screening at Metrograph Cinema; Among 15 Documentary Features to Advance in 2017 OSCAR® RACE 

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HBO® Launches First Asian Pacific American Short Film Competition; Deadline for Entries is Nov. 7

HBO APAV bannerHBO has launched HBO Asian Pacific American Visionaries, a short film competition dedicated to showcasing emerging APA directors with unique perspectives of the Asian Pacific American experience. Three winning films will be awarded cash prizes and make their premiere at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival in April 2017 and offered the opportunity to license their film to premiere exclusively on HBO (and/or its on-demand, digital and/or social platforms) during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in May 2017. The deadline for entries is November 7, 2016. Join the conversation on Twitter with hashtag #hbovisionaries.

The first competition of its kind for HBO, APA Visionaries aims to help further the dialogue about race, diversity and representation in Hollywood while offering unique and creative depictions of the Asian Pacific American experience.

General criteria for submission includes:

  •   Running time: 10-15 minutes, inclusive of credits
  •   Films must have been directed by a person of Asian or Pacific Islander descent
  •   Director must be a U.S. citizen or legal resident 18 years of age or older, and of legal age of majority in his/her state of residence
  •   Films must be in the English language or contain English subtitles (common phrases acceptable)
  •   Films must be a festival premiere
  •   Films must have commenced principal photography on or after October 1, 2015
  •   Films must not have had any previous exhibition on broadcast, cable or online.
  •   Employees of HBO and any other Time Warner entity and their immediate family members are not eligible to participate
    For complete details, visit www.hbovisionaries.com.The judging panel is comprised of HBO executives and a panel of industry experts, including representatives from the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival and the Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment.

“At a time when the most personal of stories are also the most universal, the diversity of our storytellers is more important than ever,” stated Jackie Gagne, VP Multicultural Marketing at HBO. “Our competition is designed to celebrate the unique experiences and unsung talent that exist within the Asian Pacific American community. We are also delighted and honored to have the support of incredible organizations with unparalleled legacies of promoting APA visionaries.”

“It’s inspiring to see a global entertainment brand like HBO take a leadership role in creating opportunities for Asian Pacific American filmmakers,” said Francis Cullado, Executive Director of Visual Communications, the organization that produces the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival. “The exposure provided for the winners of this competition is truly incredible and worthy of our community’s full support.”

“This competition aligns directly with our organization’s mission to champion AAPI filmmakers and artists,” said Michelle K. Sugihara, Executive Director of CAPE (Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment). “We are proud to work with HBO to identify and empower new voices in the community.”

ABOUT HBO
Home Box Office, Inc. is the premium television programming subsidiary of Time Warner Inc. and the world’s most successful pay TV service, providing the two television services – HBO® and Cinemax® – to approximately 131 million subscribers worldwide. The services offer the popular subscription video-on- demand products HBO On Demand® and Cinemax On Demand®, as well as HBO GO® and MAX GO®, HD feeds and multiplex channels. HBO NOW®, the network’s internet-only premium streaming service, provides audiences with instant access to HBO’s acclaimed programming in the U.S. Internationally, HBO branded television networks, along with the subscription video-on-demand products HBO On Demand and HBO GO, bring HBO services to over 60 countries. HBO and Cinemax programming is sold into over 150 countries worldwide.

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

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Examiner.comJade Magazine and Playbill.com.

The Bella Abzug Leadership Institute (BALI) Launches The Millie King Entrepreneurship Program at Hunter College, Aug. 2-3

Kathleen King
Kathleen King

The Bella Abzug Leadership Institute (BALI) is launching a new, cutting-edge, two-day entrepreneur training program for college women this August, 2016 in New York City. BALI has created this program in honor of Millie King, mother of long-time BALI supporter, trainer and mentor, Kathleen King.  Kathleen is the founder of Tate’s Bake Shop, a multi-million dollar bakery that she started in the kitchen of her family’s Southampton, New York farm at the age of 11.

Millie King
Millie King

In collaboration with Kathleen and with the support of the Kathleen King Charitable Fund, the Bella Abzug Leadership Institute will offer a FREE two-day entrepreneurial training program to college aged young women from New York City and around the U.S. The program will be hosted at Hunter College on Tuesday, August 2 and Wednesday, August 3, 2016.

“My mother Millie King was there for me, always encouraging and supporting my entrepreneurial spirit,” says Kathleen King.  I am very proud to be part of the Millie King Entrepreneurial Program and, with Liz Abzug and BALI at the helm, I know that these young women will receive the inspiration, guidance and encouragement they will need on their paths to success.”

Liz Abzug and her mother, Bella Abzug.
Liz Abzug and her mother, Bella Abzug.

The Millie King Entrepreneurship Program at BALI is a dream that I have had — to launch a new BALI training program for college age young women that provides them with the knowledge and skills necessary to learn how to become entrepreneurs, business owners and to work in the field of corporate social entrepreneurship,” says BALI founder/CEO Liz Abzug. “I am so thrilled that the very successful and esteemed entrepreneur Kathleen King, Founder and former CEO of Tate’s Bake Shop, is BALI’s partner in launching and supporting this important new program in honor of her late mother, whom I was  honored to know. We thank Kathleen King for her very strong support in assisting us in establishing this program and for her previous support of BALI’s  work. We believe that by creating this very unique program we will be generating our future female CEO’s, entrepreneurs and 21st century visionary leaders in business,” Abzug said.

This new cutting edge program will be comprised of a series of workshops, lectures and seminars led by some of the most successful entrepreneurs and professionals who work in the area of small business, start-ups and social entrepreneurship. The seminars will cover business strategies, development and social entrepreneurship and topics covered will include brand marketing including digital and social media, financial structuring, “one for one” company models and much more. Accomplished professional women and men from all sectors will mentor and train BALI students by offering them critical skills and guidance needed to grow as dynamic 21st century entrepreneurial business owners and visionaries.

Kathleen King, founder of the nationally-acclaimed Tate’s Bake Shop, is truly an entrepreneurial success story. Born and raised on Southampton’s North Sea Farm, she began baking at age 11 to earn money for her school clothes. By the time she was in high school she was baking 12 hours a day. Baking put her through college and as the demand for the cookies kept growing, she moved her business out of the family’s kitchen and opened her own bakery at age 20. King then launched a wholesale business, naming it after her father, Tate King. Today, Tate’s Bake Shop is a widely-recognized brand, and top-rated by Consumer Reports and TV personality Rachel Ray.  Her award-winning cookies are sold in well over 16,000 gourmet retailers throughout the US and on her robust e-bakery www.tatesbakeshop.com

BALI honorees PRISA's Marcus Vinicius Ribeiro and Judy Collins with Liz Abzug, CEO of the Bella Abzug Leadership Institute (BALI) at the 10 year anniversary celebration at the Princeton Club in New York on April 12, 2016. Photo by Lia Chang
BALI honorees PRISA’s Marcus Vinicius Ribeiro and Judy Collins with Liz Abzug, CEO of the Bella Abzug Leadership Institute (BALI) at the 10 year anniversary celebration at the Princeton Club in New York on April 12, 2016. Photo by Lia Chang

Founded in 2005, BALI’s mission is to inspire the current and next generation of girls and young women to take on leadership roles in all professions and to effectuate positive  social change in their  own communities and in the world. BALI utilizes the signature leadership skills of the late Bella Abzug, the legendary Congresswoman, lawyer and feminist leader, to mentor and train middle, high school and college age women in leadership and debate skills. BALI provides on-going  mentoring to all of our trainees so they develop the confidence and critical leadership skills needed to be effective, dynamic and visionary  21st century leaders.

For additional information on BALI please visit www.abzuginstitute.org and on Twitter @AbzugLeaders

Bella Abzug Leadership Institute (BALI) to Honor Singer/Songwriter Judy Collins and PRISA’s Marcus Vinicius Ribeiro

Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

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

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Examiner.comJade Magazine and Playbill.com.

HIDE AND SEEK Starring Lia Chang and Garth Kravits Among 14 Short Films Competing in 2016 Katra Film Series – 2nd Round in New York on July 16; Facebook Live Interviews with Finalists

Hide and Seek postcard

Lia Chang and Garth Kravits during Facebook live interview. Photo by Geoffrey Guerrero
Lia Chang and Garth Kravits during Facebook live interview. Photo by Geoffrey Guerrero

Bev’s Girl Films’ is thrilled that our debut short, HIDE AND SEEK, starring Lia Chang and Garth Kravits, is among the top 14 shorts which have screened since January in the Katra Film Series, to compete in the 2016 Katra Film Series – 2nd Round event on Saturday, July 16, 2016, for $1600 in prizes sponsored by Pond5, Moviemaker Magazine,  CreatorUp, Goze Zone, Socially Relevant Film Festival.

The Katra Film Series is NYC’s premier film series dedicated to the exhibition and promotion of quality independent cinema and innovative short-form videos. The winners of the 2nd Round – chosen by pair of industry judges and audience vote – advances to the 5th Annual Grand Finale Series in January 2017. Katra is located at 217 Bowery btw. Rivington and Prince St. in New York. The evening begins at 5pm. Tickets are $20 and can be purchased here.

The 2nd round includes an international lineup of filmmakers from Israel, Japan, Georgia, Moldova, Ecuador and Greece, with diverse topics ranging from the Syrian Refugee crisis to the lives of plantation workers in Liberia to the inhumane treatment of animals and nature. The lineup also includes shorts with cast members from hit TV shows The Blacklist, The Americans, and Orange is the New Black.

LINEUP (not in order):

Hide and Seek – directed by Garth Kravits
A short film starring Lia Chang and Garth Kravits, that speaks to the societal challenge that women, and especially women of color, endure every day. Check out our Facebook Live interview with Geoffrey Guerrero, filmmaker and founder of Katra Film Series.

Notes from Liberia – directed by Judd Ehrlich & Ryo Murakami
Tracing the journey of the late Japanese cinematographer Ryo Murakami to the Firestone Tire and Rubber Plantation in Liberia.

Chocolate Cake – Benjamin Shweky
A nostalgic tale about a boy who doesn’t quite fit in. Instead, he finds all the company he needs in his mother’s delicious chocolate cake.

The Promise – directed by Alex Leu
When his fiancée is abducted by an evil warlord, a lone soldier struggles to save her before she is turned to the dark side.

The Exam – directed by William Speruzzi
A psychological thriller about a man whose promotion hinges on him taking a medical exam.

White Privilege Frankenstein – directed by Chris Carfizzi & Ken Dashow
When an angry mob comes for Frankenstein’s Monster, Victor Frankenstein must find a way to get him off the hook.

The Small Time – Created by Jack Canfora & Andrew Rein
A struggling literary agent, Ben Bernstein, tries to find the one writer who can be the next big thing.

The Bear – directed by Avtandil Chachibaia
A moral fable about a revenge-seeking bear who nobly forgives the humans for their wrongdoings.

Fortress – directed by Amir Arison
April and Kalev meet at an Italian restaurant after agreeing to go on their first on-line date.

Emma Inspired – directed by Nicole Machon
Emma is a recent college grad, unsure of her next move in life.

Other People’s People – directed by James Fauvell
An ensemble comedy about the intersecting and competing loves, lies and indiscretions of three couples in Brooklyn, NY.

People of Nowhere – directed by Lior Sperandeo
A short doc about the Syrian refugee crisis in Lesvos, Greece.

The Skull – directed by Graceann Dorse
It’s moving day, and the Gorden family must deal with a long forgotten family heirloom that has re-surfaced.

47 Secrets to a younger you – directed by Ryan Blackwell
A comedic webseries about working moms, everyday disasters and middle-aging not so gracefully.

Do you have a short film, web series, short doc, music video you’d like to submit? Katra is looking for short content of any genre/form no longer than 45 minutes in length. Visual art, experimental, animations are welcome! Submit via Film Freeway.

Geoffrey Guerrero, Lia Chang and Garth Kravits
Geoffrey Guerrero, Lia Chang and Garth Kravits

Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

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

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 is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. 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 and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Examiner.comJade Magazine and Playbill.com.