Producers Guild of America Deems Foreign Language Films As Not Worth Their Time

Karin Chien, Independent Spirit Award winning producer, who’s had numerous films premiere at Sundance and other world class festivals, is a formidable multi-hyphenate. Aside from producting films, she started a company that releases underground Chinese films in the US called dGenerate Films, does weekend producer workshops, and is working on a major forum geared towards Asian American content makers. She does it all.

One of her most recent films, CIRCUMSTANCE, premiered at Sundance earlier this year, where it won the Audience Award, and was released nationally this fall. It just came out on DVD last week. The film’s story explores homosexuality in Tehran and is a critics darling with rave reviews in The New York Times and has been a lightning rod in bringing a particular topic in Persian life into the forefront.

Since this is “awards season” and even though it’s a grind, it’s also a necessity to get your films noticed via awards nominations. Therefore, CIRCUMSTANCE was submitted for consideration to the Producers Guild of America (PGA) Awards. Karin and the producers knew it was a longshot… Until they got an e-mail on December 1st from PGA’s Director of Arbitrations & Legal Affairs saying “unfortunately under the current rule structure, we are unable to accept foreign language films at this time.”