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My Experience at the 2010 LAAPFF | Projekt NewSpeak
The HanSarang Activist
Posted: 2010-05-12
Categories: Projekt NewSpeak

I came to Los Angeles to pursue my passion of being an actor with a social justice activist core. For the past three months, I worked hard to accomplish this goal within the Asian Pacific American community and have met some truly wonderful people along the way. Throughout my time here, I encountered Visual Communications and knew right away that this was the type of organization that spoke directly to my dreams and ambitions. So it was a great honor to be chosen as one of the Online Reporters for the 2010 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival. It was a blast to partake in watching the many featured films and shorts as well as getting to know the people responsible for creating them.

I have never actually taken part in a film festival before and so it was an exciting and yet also terrifying prospect to watch so many movies, interview featured directors & actors, and attend many of the panels throughout the festival. But I am not here solely to discuss the actors, directors, producers, and industry folks that I met nor am I here to put up reviews on the movies that I have seen.

I am here because I want to put down in words the overwhelming feeling that I felt as I watched these films; stories that were unique, tragic, haunting, hilarious, and most of all, beautiful. I was in awe of the romance and love that could be felt throughout Arvin Chen’s Au Revoir Taipei. I witnessed the courageous bravado in expressing one’s inner ugliness and insecurities in Eyad Zahra’s The Taqwacores. I laughed my buttocks off in the hilarious yet down-to-earth portrayals of Asian Americans in Quentin Lee’s The People I Slept With and Daniel Park’s Ktown Cowboys. I watched in intense silence being part of Thet Sambath’s incredible personal journey in Enemies of the People and moved to tears when he showed forgiveness to the former Khmer Regime soldiers.

These are only a few of the many beautiful stories that I have had the pleasure of watching. During my interactions and interviews with many of these folks who made these films and shorts possible, I realized that I was in the presence of the future movers and shakers who will shape the cinema and media landscape. Their voices and their stories are all different yet in the end, they speak directly to the human condition and the joy of being alive with all its imperfections and glory.

My experience with this film festival has inspired me to create my own unique voice with resolve, determination, and passion, just like the filmmakers and actors did for their works. It is an experience that I know that I will never forget.

WongFu, Yuri Tag, Justin Chon, Kevjumba, PK, and a whole lot of other folks

The Taqwacores

The People I Slept With

One Response:
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