Tag Archives: Hong Kong

Subway Cinema and Metrograph are presenting the 6th Old School Kung Fu Fest in New York, April 8-10

SUBWAY CINEMA and METROGRAPH are presenting the 6TH OLD SCHOOL KUNG FU FEST, Friday, April 8th – Sunday, April 10th, at Metrograph, 7 Ludlow Street (between Hester St. and Canal St.in New York.

kung fuPresented with Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office New York in association with Warner Archive, The Old School Kung Fu Fest, a three-day barrage of the rarest, wildest, and most incredible classic martial arts and action movies is back for its 6th annual edition. This year, the spotlight is on Golden Harvest, the studio that became Hong Kong’s leading purveyor of truly insane action cinema in the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s.

Established in 1970 by Raymond Chow and Leonard Ho, Golden Harvest fast became a rival to Shaw Brothers with a string of blockbusters in the 1970s, and went on to became a dominant force in the Hong Kong film industry throughout the 80’s and 90’s, producing, financing, and distributing over 600 films across many genres. The studio has nurtured the talents of Bruce Lee, John Woo, Michael Hui, Stanley Kwan, Jimmy Wang Yu, Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung, Angela Mao, and many others.

Golden Harvest was also active in the international market. After successfully collaborating with Warner Bros. on Enter the Dragon, the studio went on to set up its own film division in the U.S. and invested in around 20 Hollywood films, including Battle Creek Brawl (1980), which was Jackie Chan’s first attempt to crack the U.S. market, The Cannonball Run (1981), High Road to China (1983), Cannonball Run II(1984), and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990).

To celebrate Golden Harvest’s legacy, the  program will feature some of the studio’s greatest martial arts and action films including Bruce Lee’s funkadelic masterpiece Enter The Dragon (1973); the original One-Armed Swordsman (Jimmy Wang Yu) and the one-off James Bond (George Lazenby) going mano-a-mano in the car crashtastic The Man From Hong Kong (1975); Sammo Hung and Yuen Biao in martial arts action paradise with The Prodigal Son (1981); Sammo Hung directing and starring in Pedicab Driver (1989), the greatest achievement of his early career; Jackie Chan fighting a big yellow hovercraft in Rumble in the Bronx (1995); Tsui Hark’s feral swordplay movie The Blade (1996); and the the last truly great Hong Kong cop film of the 90s, Big Bullet (1996).All the titles (except Prodigal Son) will be super-rare 35mm screenings!*

In other exciting news for fans of Hong Kong cinema, Warner Archive has begun to make Golden Harvest titles available as part of their manufacture on demand service. 16×9 widescreen DVDs in their original language with English captions can be ordered for the discerning film fan’s collection. Titles include A Terra-Cotta Warrior (1989), He’s a Woman, She’s a Man (1994), The Blade (1995), Pedicab Driver (1989), Blade of Fury (1993), Big Bullet (1996) and Downtown Torpedoes(1997) – and these few are just the beginning! For information on how to order visit www.warnerarchive.com

The 6th Old School Kung Fu Fest is presented with the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office New York, in association with Warner Archive.

*The Prodigal Son will be screened on DCP.

THE FILMS!

BIG BULLET 衝鋒隊─怒火街頭

(1996, Hong Kong, 92 minutes, 35mm, in Cantonese with English and Chinese subtitles)

Directed by Benny Chan

Starring: Sean Lau Ching-Wan, Jordan Chan, Cheung Tat-Ming, Theresa Lee

1996 was the end of one era of Hong Kong movies, and the beginning of another. The box office was in freefall, and people were trying new things because no one knew what worked. Benny Chan, previously known for his light comedies, wanted to try action and Big Bullet was his shot. Starring Lau Ching-wan (Full Alert) as a hard-nosed cop demoted to riding in a patrol van with a gang of misfits (including Jordan Chan, who’d score big playing a gangster in that year’s Young & Dangerousmovies), his gang of losers runs afoul of a pair of baroque criminals played by Anthony Wong (The Untold Story) and Yu Rong-Guang (A Terra-Cotta Warrior) out to knock over Interpol Headquarters. Ridiculous? Sure, but it was a chance for Chan and action director Ma Yuk-Sing (The East is Red) to showcase their new brand of action that mixed high octane Hollywood boom-boom with Hong Kong’s complex action set pieces to deliver what feels like an 80s Hollywood action classic likeLethal Weapon with the “Mayhem” dial turned up to 11.

Showtimes: Friday, April 8 at 5:40pm; Sunday, April 10 at 10:00pm.

THE BLADE 

(1995, Hong Kong, 104 minutes, 35mm, in Cantonese with English subtitles)

Directed by Tsui Hark

Starring: Zhao Wen-zhou, Moses Chan, Xiong Xin-xin, Austin Wai, Song Nei, Ngai Sing.

Missing out on seeing The Blade on the big screen would be like going to the carnival and not going on the gnarliest, biggest and wildest ride. A masterpiece by anyone’s standards, The Blade is Tsui Hark’s tribute to the martial arts films he grew up with. It’s a reimagining of director Chang Cheh’s landmark wuxia (swordplay) classic, The One-Armed Swordsman (1967)as a psychotronic phantasmagoria full of scars and tattoos, mutilation, amputation, sexual frustration, and sharp, heavy chunks of steel splitting muscle and breaking bones. Rapid cutting, berserker camera movement, frenetic choreography and compositions packed to bursting with rhythm, texture and detail, Tsui Hark’s revved-up ancient China roars away from the viewer like an out-of-control freight train, never saying what can be shown, never showing what can be said. Brains and eyeballs are battered and bruised and the audience has to run to keep up, but the experience of seeing one of the world’s best directors at the top of his game is indescribably ecstatic.

Showtimes: Friday, April 8 at 10:15pm; Sunday, April 10 at 1:00pm.

ENTER THE DRAGON 龍爭虎鬥

(1973, USA/Hong Kong, 98 minutes, 35mm)

Directed by Robert Clouse

Starring: Bruce Lee, John Saxon, Jim Kelly, Angela Mao, Shih Kien, Sammo Hung, Bolo Yeung.

The legendary martial arts film that cemented Bruce Lee as an international cinema icon, Robert Clouse’s Enter the Dragon is a punchdrunk ride through exploitation heaven that shaped the pattern for the thousands of martial arts movies that followed in its wake. Bruce plays a martial arts champ who goes undercover for British intelligence on the island of Mr. Han (longtime Hong Kong star Shih Kien) where he’ll fight in an underground tournament where the world’s best martial artists try to kill each other to earn a job with Mr. Han. Competing against him are American exploitation star John Saxon and blaxploitation hero Jim Kelly. Lee is especially hacked off that his sister (Hong Kong martial arts heroine Angela Mao) was recently beaten to death in the streets by Mr. Han’s bodyguard. Bruce Lee is a beautiful animal in this flick, burning like a supernova as he dishes out beatdowns and neck breakings like candy at a Shriner’s parade. This was his one shot to show the world why everyone should know his name, and he seizes it with both hands and takes a big, bloody bite out of it.

Showtimes: Saturday, April 9 at 3:15pm.

THE MAN FROM HONG KONG (aka THE DRAGON FLIES) 直搗黃龍

(1975, Hong Kong/Australia, 103 minutes, 35mm)

Directed by Brian Trenchard-Smith, Jimmy Wang Yu

Starring: Jimmy Wang Yu, George Lazenby, Ros Spiers, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Rebecca Gilling, Sammo Hung, Frank Thring, Bill Hunter.

In the first Hong Kong-Australian co-production, Inspector Fang of the Hong Kong Special Branch (Jimmy Wang Yu, The One-Armed Swordsman, 1967), goes to Australia after dope smuggler Kim Po Hung (Sammo Hung), with the intent of taking down Sydney mob boss Wilton (George LazenbyOn Her Majesty’s Secret Service, 1969). Long before Jackie Chan would apply a similar format to his international crossover action films, such as Rumble in the Bronx, Golden Harvest and Australian action maestro, Brian Trenchard-Smith, showed him how to do it. Featuring a car chase that would give the one in Bullitt (1968) a run for its money, stunts by Sammo Hung and his team, an explosive finale, and laced with an earworm theme song (“Sky High” by Jigsaw that you have definitely heard before) this is how you do it when you want to make a swank, international action movie that feels as macho as drinking a can of lager while hang gliding through an exploding fireball.

Showtimes: Saturday, April 9 at 5:40pm; Sunday, April 10 at 3:15pm.

PEDICAB DRIVER 群龍戲鳳

(1989, Hong Kong, 93 minutes, 35mm, in Mandarin with English and Chinese subtitles)

Directed by Sammo Hung

Starring: Sammo Hung, Nina Li, Yuet Suen, Max Mok, Fennie Yuen, Lau Kar-Leung, Corey Yuen Kwai, and Billy Chow.

Long unseen and unavailable on home video, until Warner Archive finally brought it to DVD this year, Sammo Hung’s action masterpiece is here and it wants to kick you through a wall. Set in 1950’s Macau, this action-comedy-drama-romance burns up the screen with old school intensity, and is sprinkled with appearances by a galaxy of big-name Hong Kong stunt actors and filmmakers. Yuen Biao and Corey Yuen get into a “light saber” duel with fluorescent light tubes! Eric Tsang hides! Sammo takes on Lau Kar-leung, and you won’t want to miss two of the world’s greatest action directors duking it out. As Lau Kar-leung tells Sammo: “Fatty, you’re crafty!” Then watch Sammo unleash infinite pain on super-kicker Billy Chow (the Japanese baddie in Fist of Legend (1994). Audience-pleasing, heart-pumping, nitro-burning moviemaking in what is arguably one of the best martial arts movies of the 1980’s.

Showtimes: Friday, April 8 at 7:50pm – followed by a panel discussion on the history and importance of Golden Harvest Studio (TBC); Saturday, April 9 at 11:00pm.

THE PRODIGAL SON (aka PULL NO PUNCHES) 敗家仔

(1981, Hong Kong, 100 minutes, DCP, in Mandarin with English subtitles)

Directed by Sammo Hung

Starring: Sammo Hung, Yuen Biao, Lam Ching-ying, Frankie Chan

This posh Wing Chun epic is a masterpiece of Sammo Hung’s early career, and the last period kung fu film that he directed at Golden Harvest. Spoiled brat, Yuen Biao, comes up against a true martial arts master, Lam Ching-ying, and begs to become his student. Lam’s not having it, and a series of savage throat locks ensue. Yuen Biao does backflips off the sprocket holes and Sammo Hung punches holes in the screen, but it’s Lam Ching-ying, as an asthmatic Chinese Opera diva, whose blistering fu scorches the emulsion and burns up the film. Unequaled in cinema history, this movie serves it up hot and fast. Lam Ching-ying died sixteen years later at the age of 44 and this movie is a ferocious tribute to the man who was Bruce Lee’s stunt double, and an iconic martial arts star in his own right.

Showtimes: Sunday, April 10 at 7:45pm.

RUMBLE IN THE BRONX 紅番區

(1995, USA, 103 minutes, 35mm, in Cantonese with English and Chinese subtitles)

Directed by Stanley Tong

Starring: Jackie Chan, Anita Mui, Francoise Yip, Bill Tung, Marc Akerstream.

It’s the candy-colored, DayGlo movie that finally broke Jackie Chan big in America,Rumble in the Bronx is like the 90’s Saturday morning cartoon of your dreams. The second time Chan teamed up with director-stunt coordinator, Stanley Tong (the first was Police Story III: Supercop), it’s really “Rumble in Vancouver” with the freshly-scrubbed Canadian wonderland standing in for the “dangerous” Bronx, and that sets the tone for this lighthearted riff on the Jackie Chan formula. Here he plays a cop coming to Bron-Couver for his uncle’s wedding, but he randomly runs up against diamond thieves, and winds up having to protect a local supermarket. It’s as goofy as it sounds, full of rampaging hovercraft, goodnatured gang members, kids in wheelchairs wishing their legs were “normal,” and some of the goofiest dialogue to ever come out of Hong Kong. On the other hand, it features Hong Kong’s great diva, Anita Mui, as the supermarket owner, some gravity-defying fight scenes from Jackie, and it’s peppered with Stanley Tong’s jumps and stunts — including a leap onto a hovercraft that broke Jackie’s ankle (he finished the movie with his foot in a cast painted to look like his shoe). The gooniest, most 90’s movie that Chan ever made.

Showtimes: Saturday, April 9 at 1:00pm; Sunday, April 10 at 5:30pm.

A TERRA-COTTA WARRIOR 秦俑

(1990, Hong Kong, 97 minutes, 35mm, in Mandarin with English and Chinese subtitles)

Directed by Ching Siu-Tung

Starring: Zhang Yimou, Gong Li, Yu Rong-Guang, Suk Bung Luk.

Drawing inspiration from Kurosawa to Spielberg, A Terra-Cotta Warrior is a feast for the senses, and one of the most exquisite period fantasy films to come out of Hong Kong in the 90s, with its unique blend of romance, swashbuckling action, and comedy, thanks in equal parts to the screenplay by Lillian Lee (Green Snake, 1993,Rouge, 1988), action direction by Ching Siu-Tung, and breathtaking cinematography by Peter Pau (The Bride with White Hair, 1993). A collaboration between producer Tsui Hark (The Blade) and director Ching Siu-Tung that was two-and-a-half years in the making, A Terra-Cotta Warrior follows one of the First Emperor of China’s soldiers (Zhang Yimou) as he is accidentally awakened in the 1930s by Zhu Lili (Gong Li) after being encased alive in clay in the Emperor’s tomb as a punishment. At the time it was made, director-actor Zhang Yimou and his leading lady, Gong Li, were China’s power couple, and they shine in this one-of-a-kind rarely screened movie.

Showtimes: Saturday, April 9 at 8:45pm.

THE SCHEDULE!

Friday, April 8

5:40pm – BIG BULLET (92min)

7:50pm – PEDICAB DRIVER (93min)

10:15pm – THE BLADE (104min)

Saturday, April 9

1:00pm – RUMBLE IN THE BRONX (103min)

3:15pm – ENTER THE DRAGON (110 min)

5:40pm – THE MAN FROM HONG KONG (103min)

8:45pm – A TERRA-COTTA WARRIOR (97min)

11:00pm – PEDICAB DRIVER (93min)

Sunday, April 10

1:00pm – THE BLADE (104min)

3:15pm – THE MAN FROM HONG KONG (103min)

5:30pm – RUMBLE IN THE BRONX (103min)

7:45pm – THE PRODIGAL SON (100min)

10:00pm – BIG BULLET (92min)

VENUE AND ADMISSION!

Screenings will be held at Metrograph, located at 7 Ludlow Street, between Canal and Hester streets, in the Lower East Side.

www.metrograph.com

NOTE: Metrograph is an assigned-seating movie house. To choose your preferred seats, we recommend that you buy tickets in advance online.

Tickets can be purchased in advance online or at the box office.

General admission: $15; Senior & Child: $12 (Senior and child tickets must be bought in person at the box-office). Matinees: $12 (The first show of the day is priced at a reduced matinee rate, available both online and in person). Tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable.

ABOUT THE OLD SCHOOL KUNG FU FEST

Old School Kung Fu Fest (OSKFF) is an annual celebration of the rarest, wildest, and most incredible martial arts and action cinema from the ‘60s through the ‘90s, presented on rare 35mm film prints whenever possible. Rising from the ashes of Subway Cinema’s original Old School Kung Fu Fest underground screenings of the early 2000’s, the new incarnation was relaunched in 2013 as a 3-day spring festival, infused with the grindhouse spirit of New York’s 42nd Street and Chinatown theaters, and designed for the maximum audience enjoyment. Twitter: @subwaycinema (#oldschool16).

ABOUT SUBWAY CINEMA

Based in New York City, Subway Cinema is America’s leading 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the exhibition and appreciation of Asian popular film culture in all forms, building bridges between Asia and the West. With year-round festivals and programs, the organization aims to bring wide audience and critical attention to contemporary and classic Asian cinema in the U.S. In 2002, Subway Cinema launched its flagship event, the annual New York Asian Film Festival (NYAFF), which is North America’s leading festival of popular Asian cinema. Since 2010, NYAFF has been produced in collaboration with the Film Society of Lincoln Center. The 15 NYAFF will take place June 22 – July 9, 2016. Subway cinema’s other major events include the Old School Kung Fu Fest (OSKFF) and the New York Korean Film Festival (NYKFF).

Subway Cinema receives generous year-round support from Kenneth A. Cowin Foundation.

For more information, visit subwaycinema.comfacebook.com/NYAFF and follow @subwaycinema on twitter.

ABOUT METROGRAPH

Showcasing first-run and repertory films, Metrograph is a two screen movie house built with archive-quality 35mm film projection, state-of-the-art digital projection, a restaurant, cinema-dedicated rare bookshop, café, and lounge. The definitive place for people to celebrate cinema.

For more information, visit metrograph.comfacebook.com/metrographNYC/

and follow @MetrographNYC on twitter.

Directions:

Metrograph – 7 Ludlow Street (between Hester St. and Canal St.)

F Train to East Broadway

D/B Train to Grand Street

J/M/Z/F Train to Essex Street

ABOUT HONG KONG ECONOMIC AND TRADE OFFICE, NEW YORK

The Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in New York is one of the three representative offices of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government in the U.S. The HKETONY has been promoting business and cultural ties between Hong Kong and the 31 eastern states. It works closely with state and city governments, business chambers, think tanks, academia and the media to enhance understanding and cooperation between the U.S. and Hong Kong. It also organizes and sponsors various cultural and sporting events such as dragon boat festivals, film festivals and arts fellowship programs.  Facebook

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

Lia Chang is an award-winning filmmaker, a Best Actress nominee, a photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. 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.

Q & A with Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Ruby Yang; New Film MY VOICE, MY LIFE screens at #PAAFF15 on Nov. 22 at Asian Arts Initiative

MVML-English-Poster

Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Ruby Yang’s newest film, My Voice, My Life, will screen at the Philiadelphia Asian American Film Festival on Sunday, Nov. 22, 2015 at  4:30 PM  at the Asian Arts Initiative: 1219 Vine Street, Philadelphia 19107
General Admission: $8
Students (with student ID), Children and Seniors Admission: $6
Seats are limited.
BUY NOW

My Voice, My Life follows an unlikely group of misfit students from four Hong Kong middle and high schools cast in a musical theater performance. From low self-esteem to blindness, each student confronts unique personal challenges in the process of developing his or her character.

This moving and insightful film chronicles the trials and tribulations of this group of underprivileged students as they go through six months of vigorous training to produce a musical. A life-affirming journey of self-discovery and growth, the stories of these young people will challenge every parent, teacher and policymaker to reflect on our way of nurturing the young.

Brought together to sing, dance and act, the students question their own abilities and balk at the spotlight. Teachers and administrators question whether this ragtag band will be able to work together, much less put on a successful musical. But Nick Ho, director of the production, holds onto hope that his tough love approach will unite the students and bring out their inner performers.

MVML_COBY_WONG_MAKEUP.jpg

The L plus H Creations Foundation presents My Voice, My Life in association with the Lee Hysan Foundation. The film is 91 minutes in Cantonese with English subtitles.

Filmmaker Ruby Yang.
Filmmaker Ruby Yang

Ruby took time out of her busy schedule to answers some questions via email from Hong Kong.

Lia: What inspired you to make My Voice, My Life?
Ruby: My first documentary, Citizen Hong Kong, was filmed during the return of Hong Kong (to China) in 1997. I always wanted to do another documentary about the young people in Hong Kong.

In 2013, L Plus H Creations Foundation (a social enterprise that improves the lives of underprivileged youth through art) asked me to make a documentary about their inaugural musical. I saw their first rehearsal and noticed a young man named Tsz Nok. He’s one of four visually impaired students being selected to take part. I was very moved by his singing and later found out that he lost his sight one year ago. I thought it would be a good story about inclusion as well as witnessing the transformative power of arts to build confidence for these marginalized youth.

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Lia: What motivates you as an artist and as a filmmaker?
Ruby: Good human stories.

I think all my films are about identity, marginalized groups and social changes affecting people’s lives. If you look at the children being affected by HIV/AIDS or the farmer who studies environmental law to save his village, you see a common thread emerging – the human spirit and it’s about humanity.

Lia: After living in the U.S. for such a long time, what has it been like to be back in Hong Kong?
Ruby: Hong Kong has become quite political in the last couple of years – high pressure and intense. There is a lot of tension between mainland Chinese and Hong Kong born Chinese.

People are media savvy. At the same time they are also bombarded with negative news. My husband and I moved to Beijing in 2004, lived in China for eight years before moving to Hong Kong. It took me a while to adjust to the freedoms in Hong Kong.

Lia: What has it been like working in China? Have there been restrictions or challenges?
Ruby: In Hong Kong, as long as one gets the permission from the person or place to shoot you just shoot – but in China that’s not the case. Even with the person’s permission, you might not be able to continue shooting because you might be touching on a sensitive topic, which can be stopped at any time.

Lia: Which of the subjects in My Voice, My Life do you relate to most?
Ruby: I related to all of them in different ways. They are rebellious, having short attention span, unable to communicate with their parents, lacking self-confidence, feeling excluded … I think we all share that kind of experience.

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Lia: What was it like for you as a young Chinese American female filmmaker early in your career?
Ruby: It was tough. There weren’t many opportunities for Asian Americans in film business. As a foreign born, it was even harder. It was crucial that during the early 80s, CAAM (formerly NAATA), New York Asian CineVision and Visual Communications in L.A. helped champion the voices of Asian Americans in the mainstream media. As Asian Americans, we have traveled a long journey; the struggle is still on going.

Lia: Did you have mentors when you were first honing your craft?
Ruby: Yes, I am blessed with many mentors in my career. That is so important. Now I am mentoring young documentary filmmakers in Hong Kong and China.

Lia: How did winning an Oscar in the Documentary Short category for The Blood of Yingzhou District in 2006 change your life, your career and your outlook on life?
Ruby: As a documentary filmmaker, you always want to be low-key and be professionally invisible. Winning an Oscar proves to be a problem in China. I am no longer invisible.

Lia: How was My Voice, My Life received in Hong Kong?
Ruby: It made about 6 million Hong Kong dollars (about $700,000 U.S.), which makes it one of the few top-grossing documentaries in Hong Kong. There were over 500 screenings booked by high schools and organizations since the release of the film in October 2014. Many local celebrities have endorsed the film, which brought the attention to the issues discussed in the film to the general audience.

Lia: What have been the top three projects that you have worked on and why?
Ruby: The Warriors of Qiugang documents a group of Chinese villagers that organized to put an end to the poisoning of their land and water. Public participation is beginning to take shape in China but Chinese citizens are facing huge battles ahead.

The Blood of Yingzhou District: HIV/AIDS issue was a taboo subject in China when we started our AIDS public awareness work there in 2004. A lot has changed for the better 10 years after.

Citizen Hong Kong, which explored identity issues of Hong Kong born Chinese. Now (Hong Kong’s) political future is very much on the minds of many Hong Kongers.

Lia: Is there a reason that you gravitate toward documentary filmmaking versus narrative filmmaking?
Ruby: I like documentaries because they bring me to different real-life situations. What’s better than just experiencing life and talking to people about their lives?

Lia: What advice would you give to aspiring filmmakers?
Ruby: Be curious, patient and draw inspiration from life.

Ruby Yang is a noted Chinese American filmmaker whose work in documentary and dramatic film has earned her an Academy Award, two Academy Award nominations and numerous other international awards, including an Emmy, the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Journalism Award and the Global Health Council Media Award.

Lia Chang
Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an award-winning filmmaker, a Best Actress nominee, a photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. 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, which will screen at the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival on November 21st. She is profiled in Examiner.com, FebOne1960.com BlogJade Magazine and Playbill.com.

Other Articles:
Hide and Seek starring Lia Chang and Garth Kravits screens at the 2015 Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival (PAAFF15) in Women’s Shorts Program at Asian Arts Initiative on Nov. 21
World Premiere of PALI ROAD at 2015 Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF) on Nov. 16 & 21st
AsAmNews.com: Actor Tzi Ma Rides ‘Hell On Wheels’ to New Heights
Q and A with Jason Tobin, star of Dax Phelan’s JASMINE
Q & A with Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Ruby Yang; New Film MY VOICE, MY LIFE screens at #PAAFF15 on Nov. 22 at Asian Arts Initiative
Ed Moy’s Animated Short UP IN THE CLOUDS has East Coast premiere screening at PAAFF15 on Nov. 20
Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival Announces 8th Annual Festival Lineup
Gotta Dance Star André De Shields receives 2015 Award for Excellence in the Arts from The Theatre School at DePaul University
AsAmNews.com: Partying with George Takei, Lea Salonga, Telly Leung, Michael K. Lee and the cast of ‘Allegiance’ on opening night
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GOTTA DANCE stars André De Shields, Stefanie Powers, Lori Tan Chinn, Lillias White step out for ON YOUR FEET!
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Greg Watanabe makes Broadway Debut as Mike Masaoka in ‘Allegiance’ 
AsAmNews.com: Q & A with Arthur Dong, Award-winning Filmmaker and Author, Gay Icon, Distinguished Professor of Film
Film Lab Screening of ‪#‎72HrSO‬ Films at Time Warner Theater & Panel Discussion of Mass Media Constructions of Beauty 
AsAmNews.com: Creating an Asian American presence on Wikipedia, one WikiAPA Edit-a-thon at a time 
AsAmNews.com: The King and I’s Special Performance Benefits The Actors Fund 
Playbill.com: Hugs, Laughs and Photobombs By Tony Winners! Go Backstage at the Special Actors Fund Performance of The King and I
Broadwayworld.com: Photo Flash: Phylicia Rashad, Andre De Shields & More Original Cast Members from THE WIZ Reunite in Central Park! 
BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA Cast Reunion featured in BLACK BELT MAGAZINE August/September 2015
Drumhead Magazine: Living Colour Drummer Will Calhoun, Photos by Lia Chang 
AsAmNews.com: AAPI Heritage Month: My Grandmother’s Detention on Angel Island 
Crafting a Career

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

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2015 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 lia@liachangphotography.com

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2015 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 lia@liachangphotography.com.

Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Ruby Yang’s My Voice, My Life set for US Screening Tour in LA, SF and New York, Nov. 1 – 8

MVML-English-Poster

Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Ruby Yang’s newest film, My Voice, My Life, follows an unlikely group of misfit students from four Hong Kong middle and high schools cast in a musical theater performance. From low self-esteem to blindness, each student confronts unique personal challenges in the process of developing his or her character.

This moving and insightful film chronicles the trials and tribulations of this group of underprivileged students as they go through six months of vigorous training to produce a musical. A life-affirming journey of self-discovery and growth, the stories of these young people will challenge every parent, teacher and policymaker to reflect on our way of nurturing the young.

Brought together to sing, dance and act, the students question their own abilities and balk at the spotlight. Teachers and administrators question whether this ragtag band will be able to work together, much less put on a successful musical. But Nick Ho, director of the production, holds onto hope that his tough love approach will unite the students and bring out their inner performers.

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The L plus H Creations Foundation presents My Voice, My Life in association with the Lee Hysan Foundation. 

My Voice, My Life, heads back to US theaters for three weeks beginning October 31 exclusively at the Laemmle Pasadena Playhouse 7. Free admission. Go to http://www.myvoicemylifemovie.com for your tickets now.
This event is supported by Create Hong Kong

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My Voice, My Life, – US Tour starts Nov. 1.

Director Ruby Yang will be joined by one of the subjects of the film, Jason Chow for Q/A in the following special screenings:

LOS ANGELES
Nov. 1, 2015, 3:00 PM – Asian World Film Festival
Nov. 3, 2015, 7:30 PM – Museum of Tolerance

SAN FRANCISCO
Nov. 4, 2015, 7:30 PM – Landmark Embarcadero Cinema

NEW YORK
Nov. 8, 2015, 2:00 PM – Tribeca Screening Room

(Director Yang will not be present at the NY screening, but her Oscar® winning producing partner Thomas Lennon will be joined by Jason Chow for Q/A)

Email mvmlhk@gmail.com to RSVP.

The film is 91 minutes in Cantonese with English subtitles.

PHILADELPHIA- Philiadelphia Asian American Film Festival
Nov. 22, 2015, 4:30 PM – Asian Arts Initiative: 1219 Vine Street, Philadelphia 19107
General Admission: $8
Students (with student ID), Children and Seniors Admission: $6
Seats are limited.
BUY NOW

Filmmaker Ruby Yang.
Filmmaker Ruby Yang

Ruby took time out of her busy schedule to answers some questions via email from Hong Kong.

Lia: What inspired you to make My Voice, My Life?
Ruby: My first documentary, Citizen Hong Kong, was filmed during the return of Hong Kong (to China) in 1997. I always wanted to do another documentary about the young people in Hong Kong.

In 2013, L Plus H Creations Foundation (a social enterprise that improves the lives of underprivileged youth through art) asked me to make a documentary about their inaugural musical. I saw their first rehearsal and noticed a young man named Tsz Nok. He’s one of four visually impaired students being selected to take part. I was very moved by his singing and later found out that he lost his sight one year ago. I thought it would be a good story about inclusion as well as witnessing the transformative power of arts to build confidence for these marginalized youth.

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Lia: What motivates you as an artist and as a filmmaker?
Ruby: Good human stories.

I think all my films are about identity, marginalized groups and social changes affecting people’s lives. If you look at the children being affected by HIV/AIDS or the farmer who studies environmental law to save his village, you see a common thread emerging – the human spirit and it’s about humanity.

Lia: After living in the U.S. for such a long time, what has it been like to be back in Hong Kong?
Ruby: Hong Kong has become quite political in the last couple of years – high pressure and intense. There is a lot of tension between mainland Chinese and Hong Kong born Chinese.

People are media savvy. At the same time they are also bombarded with negative news. My husband and I moved to Beijing in 2004, lived in China for eight years before moving to Hong Kong. It took me a while to adjust to the freedoms in Hong Kong.

Lia: What has it been like working in China? Have there been restrictions or challenges?
Ruby: In Hong Kong, as long as one gets the permission from the person or place to shoot you just shoot – but in China that’s not the case. Even with the person’s permission, you might not be able to continue shooting because you might be touching on a sensitive topic, which can be stopped at any time.

Lia: Which of the subjects in My Voice, My Life do you relate to most?
Ruby: I related to all of them in different ways. They are rebellious, having short attention span, unable to communicate with their parents, lacking self-confidence, feeling excluded … I think we all share that kind of experience.

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Lia: What was it like for you as a young Chinese American female filmmaker early in your career?
Ruby: It was tough. There weren’t many opportunities for Asian Americans in film business. As a foreign born, it was even harder. It was crucial that during the early 80s, CAAM (formerly NAATA), New York Asian CineVision and Visual Communications in L.A. helped champion the voices of Asian Americans in the mainstream media. As Asian Americans, we have traveled a long journey; the struggle is still on going.

Lia: Did you have mentors when you were first honing your craft?
Ruby: Yes, I am blessed with many mentors in my career. That is so important. Now I am mentoring young documentary filmmakers in Hong Kong and China.

Lia: How did winning an Oscar in the Documentary Short category for The Blood of Yingzhou District in 2006 change your life, your career and your outlook on life?
Ruby: As a documentary filmmaker, you always want to be low-key and be professionally invisible. Winning an Oscar proves to be a problem in China. I am no longer invisible.

Lia: How was My Voice, My Life received in Hong Kong?
Ruby: It made about 6 million Hong Kong dollars (about $700,000 U.S.), which makes it one of the few top-grossing documentaries in Hong Kong. There were over 500 screenings booked by high schools and organizations since the release of the film in October 2014. Many local celebrities have endorsed the film, which brought the attention to the issues discussed in the film to the general audience.

Lia: What have been the top three projects that you have worked on and why?
Ruby: The Warriors of Qiugang documents a group of Chinese villagers that organized to put an end to the poisoning of their land and water. Public participation is beginning to take shape in China but Chinese citizens are facing huge battles ahead.

The Blood of Yingzhou District: HIV/AIDS issue was a taboo subject in China when we started our AIDS public awareness work there in 2004. A lot has changed for the better 10 years after.

Citizen Hong Kong, which explored identity issues of Hong Kong born Chinese. Now (Hong Kong’s) political future is very much on the minds of many Hong Kongers.

Lia: Is there a reason that you gravitate toward documentary filmmaking versus narrative filmmaking?
Ruby: I like documentaries because they bring me to different real-life situations. What’s better than just experiencing life and talking to people about their lives?

Lia: What advice would you give to aspiring filmmakers?
Ruby: Be curious, patient and draw inspiration from life.

Ruby Yang is a noted Chinese American filmmaker whose work in documentary and dramatic film has earned her an Academy Award, two Academy Award nominations and numerous other international awards, including an Emmy, the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Journalism Award and the Global Health Council Media Award.

Lia Chang
Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an award-winning filmmaker, a Best Actress nominee, a photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. 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, which will screen at the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival on November 21st. She is profiled in FebOne1960.com Blog, Jade Magazine and Playbill.com.