Song 5: “I Know You Got Soul,” Eric B. and Rakim
Old school hip hop was better than today’s stuff. It just was. So was the break dancing. Check it out:
Song 5: “I Know You Got Soul,” Eric B. and Rakim
It’s so awesome even the weather arrow is pointing to it!
Being a Nor Cal snob, I always look down my nose when I’m in L.A. and see so-called “meteorologists” reporting the weather, with their ridiculous names, ridiculous hair, and ridiculous teeth. Yeah, I’m talking to you Dallas Reines (a weather-porn name if I ever heard one)…
…and Jackie Johnson…
…and Elita Loresca…
…oh, sorry, that last shot was tasteless. Here’s a more representative shot of Elita:
They’re obviously L.A. actor wannabes pretending to know something about the weather while we up here in the more sober north are “authentic.” We don’t care about looks. We’re about hard hitting journalism, minimal bullshit banter, and a dearth of cleavage.
Every UCLA graduate film student—to this day—still has to do their pre-410 exercise, a 2-minute short film that you have to make on 16mm in 6 hours. Fresh off a Deconstruction and experimental video background, I made this experimental short “Hysterio Passio” that required my Christian DP Scott Walker to photograph my penis in close-up. “Hysterio Passio” became part of Flow, an experimental feature compilation of my UCLA short films that will screen at the Hammer museum this Saturday evening at UCLA along with my second feature Drift.
In the mood of a retrospective, I am also thinking about ten films that have influenced me as a filmmaker in no particular order.
Besides wondering why their penises grow larger at inopportune moments, and why the “feminine hygiene” aisle in the drugstore is suddenly relevant.
I tutor kids in writing at the local middle school as part of a wonderful program called Writer Coach Connection, and every year, the eighth graders have a semester-long project called the “I-Search.”
“I” as in me, myself and I: they can pick any topic that interests them – any – and they put together an ambitious project which includes written reports, display panels, models, websites, artwork, you name it. It’s impressive. This is late high school level stuff. And it’s absolutely fascinating to me to see the range of subjects that grabs the attention of twelve and thirteen year olds in the beginning of the 21st century.
I was recently in New York for the Digital Newfronts which is the online world’s equivalent of TV upfronts where the big names trot out their content for the upcoming year to get advertisers and brands on board. All the biggies from YouTube to Hulu to Yahoo, etc… made their bid for internet dominance (I’ll write more on my thoughts later) but one thing was crystal clear–everyone is getting into creating original online video content and they’re putting real money behind it.
Along those lines, check out these YouTube stats that were recently released: 1 billion unique visitors watch YouTube every month–that’s a whooping 15% of the planet. And in a month, those 1 billion people watch 6 billion hours of content (up from 3 billion just one year ago). 93% of teens visit YouTube every week–the closest competition is Facebook where 65% of teens visit weekly. Those are staggering numbers. Imagine if a traditional outlet like ABC or CBS can claim to have 15% of the planet or 93% of teens watching–that would be unheard of. And how we consume online content is rapidly changing too. Almost 50% of online videos are consumed on mobile devices.
I can go on, but clearly the landscape is shifting and very quickly. As YOMYOMF has our own YouTube channel that’s supported by YouTube, we’re in an interesting position being in the middle of the storm.
So my question to everyone is how have these changes in the digital space affected you? Has it affected what you watch and how you watch things online? Most of us fall into the category of content creators so especially curious to know if these changes have also impacted how you create your work? The fact that we’re adapting Offender DHH’s play Yellow Face for YouTube–the first time anyone has ever done such a thing–is both exciting and scary since it’s unprecedented but that’s an example of taking risks in this space with no guideposts.
The last time I did this, I was moving to LA to be with the love of my life; now I was moving back to the San Francisco Bay Area to be with my very worried parents. Ah, what a difference 15 months can make!
Last night, I got drunk for the first time in a long time. I love drinking. Safe to say, I think many a fling for me has occurred over a good vodka/grapefruit. But in the past, I couldn’t drink at home.
Yes, the Lotteria fast food chain in Japan is now serving the ramen burger aka Menya Musashi Ramen Burger. Here’s the description of this new culinary creation:
The noodles are lightly fried into a ramen patty, which is placed between two burger buns along with tender pork cutlet and mayonnaise. The burger is also served with “katsuo dashi” (a type of Japanese broth) soup.
And if you need me to explain why this is awesome, then you are clearly reading the wrong blog.
Thanks to everyone who attended the work-in-progress screening of our YouTube adaptation of Offender David Henry Hwang’s award-winning play Yellow Face last week at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Fest. It was a sold-out screening and we were pleasantly surprised to also learn that we had won the Narrative Audience Award (tied with Ke’o Woolford’s The Haumana) at Thurs’ awards ceremony. Thanks to everyone who supported and voted for the film. You can watch the finished film in two parts on June 8 and 9 on the YOMYOMF Network.
If you want more Yellow Face, we’ll be participating in a FREE panel discussion this Weds., May 15 (6-8PM) at UCLA’s De Neve Auditorium. All the info is on the flyer above, but we’ll be having a lively discussion about Yellow Face and how YouTube is impacting the Asian American community and vice versa. The Tony Award-winning writer of Yellow Face himself, the aforementioned David Henry Hwang, will be flying in from New York to appear and he’ll be joined by YOMYOMF Creative Head Philip W. Chung, YF director Jeff Liu, YOMYOMF Network partner/YouTube star Chester See and Internet Icon season 1/top 2 finalist Lana McKissack. Again, the event is free and open to the public but you need to rsvp here in advance.
Song 4: “Union City Blue,” Blondie
I feel awful after going on yesterday about my imaginary girlfriend Siouxsie Sioux.
I mean, how do you think that makes my other imaginary girlfriend – Debbie Harry – feel?
I don’t want a cat fight breaking out because of my insensitivity. No, ladies, each of you is as lovely and cool and talented as the other. And again, I’m gonna go with a personal fave. Y’all can look up “Heart of Glass” or “Rapture” or “Call Me” on your own.
Debbie, Siouxsie, a big kiss to you both! Surely we can work something out – I’m thinking alternating schedules: who wants Tuesdays and Thursdays, and who wants Wednesdays and Fridays?
On the opening day of White Frog, just when I thought I could relax and have a meal with Jason Tobin and Chink’s production team to celebrate Jason’s winning “Best Actor” or “Breakout Performance for an Actor” award at the 2013 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, I got a call from my producer Ellie Wen who said that the TCL Chinese Theater needed a new DCP because the movie was not in sync when they played back the DCP.
Flabbergasted, I drove to Pasadena to pick up the Laemmle’s DCP while on the phone in the car in a conference call with Garrett at Simple DCP, Ellie and the projectionist at TCL. We all agreed the solution was to test out the DCP Laemmle had and also deliver a Bluray.
“We can also cancel today’s screenings,” said the theater manager casually.
“No, we can’t. People have bought tickets and the cast is coming for the 7:40pm show,” said Ellie.
“I will be there by 4pm, and we’ll have it up and running even though we missed the 2pm show and may miss the 5pm show,” I said.
Song 3: “Into The Light,” Siouxsie and the Banshees
How could I not include a song by my imaginary high school girlfriend Siouxsie Sioux?
Picking the song was agonizing: do I go with something like “Spellbound” or “Christine” or “Kiss Them For Me,” y’know, something more people might know, or do I just play one of my personal faves? And even narrowed down to a personal fave, it just as easily could’ve been “Dazzle” or “Love In A Void” or “Swimming Horses” as “Into The Light.” All I knew for sure is that I don’t want to disappoint her. Being an artist, she’s mercurial and moody. I can’t let her see my indecisiveness. I’m on eggshells with her all the time, but it’s so worth it.
Dominic Mah is a writer, director, rock musical aficionado, and ex-professional gambler. He can be found on the internets as dommah, paranormalstatus.com, and @ThorHulkCritic. His personal heroes are Stan Lee, Bruce Lee, Annabel Lee and Barbara Lee.
The villain in Marvel’s latest Iron Man film is the Mandarin, a character who fought Iron Man about 600 times in the original comics, and has always been totally Chinese. That is, until Sir Ben Kingsley was cast to play him in Iron Man 3. Now that the movie’s arrived, we can throw out speculation and see what they did. Here’s a short primer to the original comic-book Mandarin to arm you with nerdy talking points for comparison:
The Mandarin is a ridiculously powerful half-Chinese man. He owns ten alien rings, each with a devastating alien power, which he wears on all ten fingers all the time, because you never know on any given day if you’re going to need the Mento-Intensifier Ring or the Vortex Beam Ring (or the Matter Rearranger Ring, which one imagines is super-useful for the lactose-intolerant). Like Will Smith’s son, he is a master of karate, and presumably some Chinese martial arts as well. He does grand, Genghis Khan-scale evil mastermind type things. He has his own giant robot named Ultimo. In one particularly great X-Men storyline, the Mandarin captured Psylocke (a telepathic British lady, up to that point the prissiest of the X-Persons), and literally turned her Japanese, so that she could become his sidekick ninja assassin. She’s still Japanese, too. Apparently people just liked her better that way.