So What Did Sung Kang and His Mother Steal From the Set of ‘Tokyo Drift’?

Thanks to everyone who came out to last night’s packed 10th anniversary screening of Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift.

Photo courtesy of Abraham Ferrer

Photo courtesy of Abraham Ferrer

Our friend Phil Yu aka Angry Asian Man moderated a Q&A afterwards with director and YOMYOMF founder Justin Lin and actors Sung Kang (Han) and Leonardo Nam (Morimoto). Those who made it out to the event learned tidbits such as:

Han in Tokyo Drift is indeed a continuation of the Han character from Better Luck Tomorrow (also played by Sung). In BLT, Han was smoking all the time and in Tokyo Drift, he’s eating all the time—a by-product of him quitting smoking. Han appears in Tokyo Drift because that seemed like the most organic fit of all the BLT characters. In Justin’s previous film Annapolis, the character of Daric from BLT also appears as a naval cadet and is played in both films by Roger Fan.

THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS: TOKYO DRIFT 10th Anniversary Screening w/ director Justin Lin and star Sung Kang

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Join us for a 10th anniversary screening of the third film in the blockbuster Fast and Furious franchise. A bit of an outlier in the Fast and Furious series, THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS: TOKYO DRIFT follows a different set of characters from the previous films.

High school student Sean Boswell, who has a penchant for street racing, is sent to live with his father in Tokyo. He quickly gets involved with a local gang of racers, who practice a unique style of “drift racing.” To fit in and prove himself, Sean must master the new style and defeat the leader of the gang.

Adventures in Single Parenthood

Parenthood

I was on the phone yesterday with a friend who has known me since I was 18. When I told him that I was expecting a baby in June, he exclaimed, “No wonder you’ve been posting all those baby CPR videos and asking baby questions on Facebook. I just thought you were…”

Crazy?

Growing up, the thought that in order for me to have a child I would have to marry a woman made me very sad. Now looking back, I realize what I meant was that it would be sad that in order for me to have a child or a family I would have to lead a dishonest life.

‘Help’ is Here for Your iPhone

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We officially premiered Help, our 360 degree live action short, at Google’s 2015 I/O Developer Conference in San Francisco. Directed by YOMYOMF founder Justin Lin (currently helming Star Trek Beyond in Vancouver), this is the very first live-action Google Spotlight Stories film. What makes the Spotlight Stories different from other VR projects is that it’s VR for your phone and other mobile devices. You don’t need special goggles or cardboard or anything besides your phone or tablet. And now the Spotlight Stories app is available for ios so you can watch Help for free on your iPhone or iPad. Just download the app here.

Not only is Help, the first live-action project of its kind, but because it’s a Justin Lin project, it’s a cinema-quality action film. In this case, the story of an alien that crash lands in L.A.’s Chinatown and the ensuing chase that takes place across downtown. Other YOMYOMFers who took part in the project include Sung Kang who plays a cop that pisses off the alien and Alex Vegh, Sal Gatdula, Philip W. Chung and David Chan playing creative roles behind the scenes.

Now We are Six

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Six years ago today, our YOMYOMF blog launched with this random but informative post about surviving plane crashes. And here we are. We have some major changes and announcements planned for 2015 so keep your eyes out for that. But to commemorate this birthday (since we can’t legally drink yet), here’s a poem by Winnie the Pooh creator A.A. Milne that seems appropriate:

From L.A. to Beijing to Paris with Love; or the Birth of My First Chinese Movie

36 snails can be hard to stomach for a spiritual vegan on his first evening in Paris

36 snails can be hard to stomach for a spiritual vegan on his first evening in Paris

It was 5:55 am. Jetlagged and recovering from a full day of diarrhea (my stomach finally broke down from all the food I’d been eating in China), I was lying awake in my hotel room in Paris. As I was struggling to get more sleep for the full day of meetings ahead with my line producer, casting director and costume designer, I began ruminating about the very first moment that began the adventure to make my first Chinese movie, Morning, Paris!. Has it been all worth it?

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Pulling out my iPhone, I scrolled back to the first picture from Shanghai Fashion Week that I posted on my WeChat on April 14, 2013 at 6:10 am. I was probably jetlagged then too. That trip was my first significant trip to China as an adult. Earlier that year, I serendipitously met a young gay activist, J, in Los Angeles while I was invited to speak a workshop for a Chinese gay activist conference. I fell in love with him.

New ‘Hollywood Adventures” Trailer and Pics

On the heels of my fellow Offender Justin Lin and Chinese stars Zhao Wei and Huang Xiaoming getting their handprints in the courtyard of the TCL Chinese Theatre a week-and-a-half ago, there’s a new trailer out today for the film that the occasion was commemorating: Hollywood Adventures.

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This is Justin’s first foray into the Chinese film industry through his Perfect Storm shingle and as you can see below, this trailer gives a little more detail about what the movie is about and the best look so far at my fellow Offender Sung Kang playing Manny–the cornrowed villain of the piece:

One of my favorite souvenirs from the shoot was the Manny Dollars. How many people can say they’ve had their mug on money:

‘Hollywood Adventures’ In the Desert

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Today was the handprint ceremony for my fellow Offender Justin Lin and two of the biggest Chinese stars Zhao Wei and Huang Xiaoming at the courtyard of the historic TCL Chinese Theatre (read Anderson’s blog here). This is, of course, a huge deal–especially to have more Asian figures (and in Zhao Wei’s case, the first Chinese woman) alongside Hollywood legends such as John Wayne, Julie Andrews, Jack Nicholson, Steven Spielberg, Meryl Streep, Denzel Washington and others.

The event was also to celebrate the upcoming Chinese film Hollywood Adventures which is being released in most of Asia on June 26 and stars Wei and Huang with Justin as producer and writer through his Perfect Storm shingle. Many of the Offenders worked on the film both in front of and behind the camera (including Book Club’s Tim Kendall directing and Sung, Roger, Alfredo and myself in various capacities) so it was a family affair of sorts. Many of our readers here in the U.S. may not be as familiar with the project and the Chinese film industry so thought it’s as good a time as any to start sharing a little about the film in the weeks leading up to the release.

Justin Lin and HOLLYWOOD ADVENTURES honored at Hollywood Handprint Ceremony

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Today was an auspicious day in Hollywood. At the famed TCL Chinese Theatre (formerly the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, which was bought by TCL, a Chinese conglomerate) was the handprint ceremony to honor director (and YOMYOMF fearless leader) Justin Lin, and Chinese superstars Zhao Wei and Huang Xiaoming. It’s auspicious because it was a true East meets West event, to highlight the upcoming release of HOLLYWOOD ADVENTURES, produced by Justin and starring Zhao and Huang, to be released in China this month.

Reinventing Asian American Cinema

(Not so much The Joy Luck Club from left to right: Amy Hill, Kimberly Rose-Wolter, Michelle Krusiec, Tamlyn Tomita, Julia Nickson, Akemi Look, Elizabeth Sung and Karin Anna Cheung)

(Not so much The Joy Luck Club from left to right: Amy Hill, Kimberly Rose-Wolter, Michelle Krusiec, Tamlyn Tomita, Julia Nickson, Akemi Look, Elizabeth Sung and Karin Anna Cheung)

If there is a cinematic genre called Asian American film, then every Asian American feature should be an invention until we find a formula that can do well and sustain the genre. If we don’t have a formula, every movie must be a new invention or a re-invention. That’s the real excitement about Asian American cinema; precisely because there is no formula for success every movie can essentially be experimental and innovative.

I keep thinking that the last feature I made would be my last Asian American feature, but then there are so many wonderful Asian American actors I want to work with and so many new ideas I want to try out.

A Return to ’0506HK’

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My ex-boss Director Peter Chan ruminated with me about my own future in 0506HK

My ex-boss Director Peter Chan ruminated with me about my own future in 0506HK

After almost 10 years since I started making my first documentary feature 0506HK, I was brought back to my little known and seen film by a festival in Kochi, India, which is showcasing it in their “Make Belong” program as part of Kochi-Muzuris Biennale. Right after Ethan Mao between 2005 and 2006, I picked up a prosumer HD camcorder and decided to make a film about my own search for identity. I had just turned 35 and I was wondering if I should return to my birthplace—Hong Kong—to live and make films.

Throwback Thursday: The First Time

I’ve been renovating my place over the holidays and with that comes going through old possessions to either box up or throw out and that’s when I came upon this:

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It’s the autographed title page from my very first paid Hollywood gig way back in the 1990s. It was for the TV series Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman (if you want to read my previous blog about what that experience was like, click here).