YOMYOMF at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival 2015

FESTIVAL

1426568892115

It’s that time once again to join our friends at Visual Communications for another edition of the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (#31 for those keeping count) running from tonight until April 30 at various locations around L.A. This year, the fest is under the leadership of new Executive Director Francis Cullado and features a number of programs featuring members of the YOMYOMF family. Check out all the full list of programs here and the following YOMYOMF-flavah-ed events:

They don’t make um like Leonard Nimoy anymore

2014 LA Asian Pacific Film Festival Opening Night Premiere Of "To Be Takei"

I had the great pleasure and honor of meeting Mr. Leonard Nimoy last year when I presented the film TO BE TAKEI at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival. He was already ailing, with the possibility that we would have to make special arrangements at the venue to have his vehicle take him around back and he was going to enter via wheelchair and we would escort him to his seat.

But, he showed up, standing tall and walking, alongside his wife and assistant, and greeted staff and volunteers with grace. He still wanted to sneak through the back and not go on the red carpet. I assume, partly because the man was in pain but also, because it was George Takei’s night to shine, as the Festival presented the LA premiere of his documentary.

Yellow Listed as “Color of Race” in 1950′s Birth Certificate

larry birth cert

This is Larry Furukawa’s birth certificate from 1952. He recently shared it with his fellow peers at Digital Histories, a filmmaking workshop that teaches senior citizens skills to make their own short films. It’s an ongoing program that Visual Communications has been involved with for a number of years.

Back to Larry’s birth certificate: Yep, it lists “Yellow” as a color of race for his birth parents. It’s pretty surreal to see that listed on an official government. Ahh, the 1950s, the land of Ozzie and Harriet and Leave it to Beaver and when Asians were designated as “Yellow,” with the rest of the colored people, by the U.S. government.

The Short List: JITENSHA (Bicycle)

As part of the YOMYOMF Network series, The Short List, where we present short films here on the YOMYOMF blog, we’ve reached out to the filmmakers with 5 Questions to see what’s up since the production of their short film. It’s a way for them to revisit their film and get an update on their next projects. You can view all The Short List films here.

This week, we present the award-winning JITENSHA aka “Bicycle.” We ask 5 questions to director Dean Yamada about this making of this film.

1. How did you come up with the concept for this short?
Yu Shibuya is a uniquely talented writer in Tokyo, who pitched us a few different ideas for short film scripts. His pitch for Jitensha leapt off the page: Someone is taking apart the protagonist’s bicycle. One day the basket is gone, the next day the saddle, until the bell is the only thing left. He gets an envelope in the mail with a list of addresses.

2. Any challenges or setbacks during the production?
Apart from the freezing weather and a vicious hawk trying to attack my wife at the beach, shooting went pretty smoothly. On the day we shot the beach scene, the weather was so clear you could see Mt. Fuji in the distance — a rare sight during the winter. We made sure to capitalize on this serendipitous moment by putting it in the film.

The Short List: REQUIEM FOR ROMANCE

As part of the YOMYOMF Network series, The Short List, where we present short films here on the YOMYOMF blog, we’ve reached out to the filmmakers with 5 Questions to see what’s up since the production of their short film. It’s a way for them to revisit their film and get an update on their next projects. You can view all The Short List films here.

This week, we present Montreal-based Jonathan Ng’s award-winning REQUIEM FOR ROMANCE. He graciously answered our quick questionnaire in-between development meetings for his next project.

“Last year you overstepped your complimentary press access…”

THIRTY

Screen_Shot_2014-04-29_at_11.37.32_PM

“Quentin,” said a friend on my phone. “Have you seen what Scott wrote on Facebook?”

“Scott?”

“Yes, the editor of Asiansonfilm! The blog!”

“Wait, let me check… Hm… what’s happening with Visual Communications this year?” (Note: Visual Communications produces the annual Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival opening tomorrow and now in its 30th year)

“I guess he was criticizing the film festival for being too Filipino… and he got banned.”

Showdown in Little Tokyo: Chinks vs. Japs

On Friday July 26, 2013, in Little Tokyo, attorney Karen Gee, director Stanley Yung, writer Koji Steven Sakai and I finally met with the Asian Pacific American Media Coalition represented by attorney Dan Mayeda, MANAA’s Guy Aoki and actor/director Aki Aleong regarding our movie CHINK. I remember that it was particularly a curious place to meet—a small dressing room in the rear of the East West Players building where I could see myself reflected in several angles in the surrounding mirrors, reminiscent of Bruce Lee’s climatic fight scene in Enter the Dragon.

http://youtu.be/wCqmLJDdZhw

First, the “coalition” was not even unanimous in their complaint against the titling of our feature CHINK as Visual Communications, one of the seven members, has “recused” itself from the letter that started it all. Visual Communications did not only world premiere the feature at their annual Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival but also gave Jason Tobin the Best Actor Award for portraying the titular character. Besides, Visual Communication also advocates for artistic freedom.

The Short List: INSERT CREDIT

As part of the YOMYOMF Network series, The Short List, where we present short films we love every Friday at Noon EST, we’ve reached out to the filmmakers with 5 Questions to see what’s up since the production of their short film. It’s a way for them to revisit their film and get an update on their next projects. You can view all The Short List films here.

This week, we feature the 8-bit video game inspired INSERT CREDIT by Asian Canadian filmmaker David Nguyen. We ask him 5 questions about the making of his film.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NHnVLZO8-yQ&feature=youtu.be[/youtube]

1. How did you come up with the concept for this short?

The Short List: BASKETBALL, MERI JAAN

As part of the YOMYOMF Network series, The Short List, where we present short films we love every Friday at Noon EST, we’ve reached out to the filmmakers with 5 Questions to see what’s up since the production of their short film. It’s a way for them to revisit their film and get an update on their next projects. You can view all The Short List films here.

This week, we ask 5 questions to director Veena Hampapur about her short film, BASKETBALL, MERI JAAN.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0WkvWGdgGpQ[/youtube]

1. How did you come up with the concept for this short?

The YOMYOMF Network: ‘Yellow Face’ in New York & Los Angeles

We have a date for the premiere of our YouTube adaptation of our fellow Offender and Tony Award-winning writer David Henry Hwang’s play Yellow Face. It will debut in two parts on the YOMYOMF Network: Act One on June 8 and Act Two on June 9.

But if you’re in Los Angeles or New York, you’ll have two chances beforehand to get a sneak peek at Yellow Face—the first-ever play to YouTube adaptation of a major theatrical work. This Saturday, April 27, Hwang, YOMYOMF Network Creative Director Philip W. Chung and YouTube exec Christine H. Kim will speak at En Route: the 7th Annual New York City Asian American Student Conference (NYCAASC). Then, on May 5, the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (LAAPFF) will host a work-in-progress screening of Yellow Face followed by a Q&A with some of the cast/crew (see below on how you can win ticks to the screening).

The NYCAASC panel will be on 5PM EST on April 27 and will include the first public look at a clip from the film. The event is FREE and you can click here to register and get more info.

The LAAPFF screening will be at 5PM PST on May 5 at the Directors Guild of America in West Hollywood—for more info and ticks, click here. Tickets are selling fast so purchase yours now before they’re gone. You can also enter for a chance to win a FREE pair of tickets from YOMYOMF by simply sending us a tweet. Here’s what you need to do:

The Short List: TERRA COTTA

As part of the YOMYOMF Network series, The Short List, where we present short films we love every Friday at Noon EST, we’ve reached out to the filmmakers with 5 Questions to see what’s up since the production of their short film. It’s a way for them to revisit their film and get an update on their next projects. You can view all The Short List films here.

This week, we ask 5 questions to director Yasmine Gomez about her short film, TERRA COTTA.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyWz4wSQQxU[/youtube]

1. How did you come up with the concept for this short?

The Short List: VIA TEXT

As part of our new YOMYOMF Network series, The Short List, where we present short films we love every Friday at Noon EST, we’ve reached out to the filmmakers with 5 Questions to see what’s up since the production of their short film. It’s a way for them to revisit their film and get an update on their next projects. You can view all The Short List films here.

This week, we ask 5 questions to director Abe Foreman-Greenwald about his short film VIA TEXT.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcxkrMWdXP0[/youtube]

1. How did you come up with the concept for this short?