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. Read more...
This past Wednesday, two days before White Frog’s theatrical opening in Los Angeles, when I was helping my DP Yasu Tanida shop for a blazer in the Beverly Center, I got a call from producer Ellie Wen who told me that they were having problems with the DCP of White Frog at the Laemmle’s Pasadena Playhouse.
That sent me into a panic so I called the manager of the Playhouse who indeed said that they couldn’t read the drive the DCP was on.
What is a DCP? It’s short for “Digital Cinema Package” and it has replaced the use of 35mm film prints in the exhibition world. Apparently over 80% of the world’s cinema screens now project on DCP. Read more...
Ten years ago tomorrow on April 11, 2003, MTV Films released a low budget indie film made by an unknown Asian American director and a lot of credit cards and the rest as they say is YOMYOMF history. The film was, of course, Better Luck Tomorrow, directed by our fellow Offender Justin Lin and its success is the reason why you are currently reading this blog.
Many of the current Offenders, including actors Sung Kang and Roger Fan, first came together because of the shared BLT experience and the soon-to-be YOMYOMF family was born.
And so on this milestone occasion, we’d like to take a moment to look back, remember and just say, “Shit, it’s been ten years already!”
Thanks to everyone reading for your continued support and we hope to be here in another ten years. In the meantime, check out some of our past blogs about BLT: Read more...
It’s been a about a year since Sunset Stories made its film festival premiere and this coming weekend we’re excited to have our Bay Area premiere with two screenings at CAAMFEST formerly the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival. I’m incredibly pumped to screen at this festival, which has provided some of the best festival experiences I’ve had to date.
A few weeks ago, I was having Sunday dinner with my parents and made the utter mistake of telling them how excited to tell them the news about our new screening – I mean c’mon! It’s at the 1,400 seat, historic Castro Theater for chrissakes! – Only to be met by blank, completely unimpressed stares. I’m sure many of you out there in the interwebs can relate about how parents have that special knack of taking something you are so incredibly proud of and knocking it down a peg or a hundred, sending you crashing and burning from your elated high. And I totally think that Asian parents have this down to an art from with their painful bluntness. Read more...
It’s a little under 24 hours before the principal photography of Big Gay Love, the second ultra low budget film that I’m producing this year. Why the heck am I blogging? Perhaps I subscribe to the idea of writing as therapy. In Chinese culture, calligraphy is supposed to be calming. Perhaps for a writer, writing is and should be calming.
This year, I’ve been producing two ultra low budget features, Big Gay Love and Chink. Making movies at this budget is all about passion. The directors get to make whatever they want to make as long as the film isn’t over budget. While budget is a definite limit, imagination is unlimited. And that’s what I love about these projects. They are pure visions with little market concerns. Read more...
Eugene Ahn is a former lawyer who makes indie geek-rap as Adam WarRock, and has toured extensively over the past two years. His music has been featured on sites/publications such as SPIN, Time Magazine, The Washington Post, PRI, BBC, AV Club, and more. He’s from Memphis and seriously, has never been to Graceland. He has blogged for YOMYOMF before and has released a new EP today at his website. The first music video and single, “City Beautiful,” debuts here:
Relevant to the first single and music video, he’s written a blog post about what it’s like growing up Asian in the South…
Home is a strange concept, especially for someone who’s traveled as much as me. As an indie musician, I’ve performed over 120 times in the past two years across the country. And everywhere I seem to go, no one can believe I’m from the South. Read more...
What began a year ago as some idle chat about a possible show idea over noodles with Offender Justin turned into a chunk of my life, and a little artifact called “Reality Reboot,” which I’m very proud of – the experience, that is, as well as the artifact. Missing it already. On that note, here’s the last thing I learned about directing.
My co-director Robert Consing calls it “the epiphany.”
Last week I talked about the sheer joy and terror of directing for the first time. I’m not done. Today we continue with lessons 6 – 10. But before we get to any of that, here’s how I spent a Sunday morning in August:
Remind me never to complain about “work” again.
6. Happily, you are not alone. Making a movie is a big fat collaboration. I co-directed with my dear old friend, Robert Consing.
When our casting director David Zimmerman on Big Gay Love said he wanted to bring on Stanzi Stokes as a partner, I immediately IMDBed Stanzi who has not only cast the Terminator but several of the most iconic movies from the 80s like Motel Hell, Michael Mann’s Thief, Silent Night, Deadly Night, The Return of the Living Dead, Howling II: Your Sister Is a Werewolf and Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure! I was totally star struck.
Casting is one of my favorite parts of making a movie because it’s so much fun and exciting to try to find the perfect actors for your movie. In reality our movie is so low budget and I just couldn’t thank David and Stanzi enough for coming onboard because they really like Ringo Le’s script. At the first session that I attended at Cazt, I was amazed at how encouraging and patient Stazi was to the thespians she brought in even for a bit part. I just had so much fun chatting with David and Stanzi and watched how the team brought out the best in the actors. Read more...
First, some context: I’ve spent the last twelve years happily typing away in hotel rooms, coffee shops, and my dining room, churning out scripts and revisions as needed, gleefully oblivious to what really goes into the making of a movie (let alone a little web series!)
Now I know different, and it’s all wonderful and frightening and exhilarating and terrifying. But at least I wasn’t alone: I co-directed with the multi-talented Robert Consing.
1. And this is probably the most important thing – bring candy to the first day of shooting.
While film premieres may seem glamorous on the outside, they are always stressful and hard work for the people involved in the film. As a filmmaker, I get stressed a few days before the premiere. How will people react to the film? How can you drum up more publicity? Will it be sold out? I would like to say that it’s usually very bad etiquette for friends to call filmmakers for last minute tickets… because we don’t have them! We are lucky to not pay out of our own pockets to get people we need into the screening like press and people useful to our future.
On the day of White Frog’s Hawaii premiere, Chris Lee, my producer, opened my bedroom door at 5:30am after I had only slept for 4 hours. I crawled out of bed and into the shower to get ready for the 7:30am interview for the Hawaii Now’s Sunrise show. We left the house around 6:30am and went to pick up my actor Booboo Stewart and his father/manager Nils Stewart at the Sheraton. We got to the station around 7am and chatted in the green room waiting to get on air. Read more...
Nathan Adloff won the Best Shout Narrative Feature Award for his autobiographically inspired feature Nate and Margaret
I just came back from jurying the Shout (LGBT section) of the Sidewalk Film Festival in Birmingham Alabama. It was my first time going to the South and people were saying, “Why would you go there?” Also dubbed the Magic City, Birmingham happened also be a city that didn’t have the best civil rights records in history. In 1961, a mob of KKK members attacked a busload of Freedom Riders with bats, iron pipes and bicycle chains. In 1963, four young African American girls were killed in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church.