Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Asians on Film Festival 2013 Winners Announced; Screenings are February 15 – 17, 2013

Congratulations to this year’s Asians on Film Festival Winners 2013. From Friday, February 15, 2013 – Sunday, February 17, 2013, check out the exciting lineup of films at the Asians on Film Festival 2013 screening at J.E.T. Studios, 5126-30 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, CA. The awards will be given out on Saturday, February 16, 2013 @ 5:00pm. Check out the complete list of winners below.
Best Drama
Model Minority (Lily Mariye, Director)
Best Documentary
Lost Years (Kenda Gee, Director)
Best Actor
Chris Pang (Citizen Jia Li)
Best Actress
Eugenia Yuan (Strangers)
Best Supporting Actor
Roni Mazumdar (9 Eleven)
Best Supporting Actress
Elizabeth Sung (Anita Ho)
Best Ensemble Cast
Anita Ho (Steve Myung, Director)
Best Director
Lily Mariye (Model Minority)

Best Drama
Dumpling (Wesley Du)
Best Comedy
The Gelephant (Jenn Liu)
Best Action/Adventure
Sudden: Butterfly and the Dragon (James Boss)
Best Documentary
A Flicker In Eternity (Ann Kaneko & Sharon Yamato)
Best Animation
Couch & Potatoes (Chris Lam & Eunsoo Jeong)
Best Actor
Won Lee (Dumpling)
Best Actress
Jessika Van (Reunion)
Best Supporting Actor
Hiro Kanagawa (Her Story)
Best Supporting Actress
Eileen Soong (Born To Dance This Way)
Best Ensemble Cast
Reunion (Jason Z. Wong)
Best Director
Wesley Du (Dumpling)
Best Cinematography
Junior Lucan & Alessandro Mattiolo (Vivian and Veronica)
Best Editing
Vincent Tran (BBOY)
Best Original Score
Terry Chan (30 ½)

Check out this year’s exciting lineup:

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 15, 2013, 4:30PM
LOWER 9: A STORY OF HOME (Matthew Hashiguchi)
“Lower 9: A Story of Home” reveals the displaced culture and community of New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward through generations of memories that fill the abandoned homes, buildings and streets of the Lower Ninth Ward community.
TULE LAKE (Michelle Ikemoto)
Set in the winter of 1943 after martial law was imposed on the camp, “Tule Lake” is an animated short film about perseverance, based on the true story of one internee and her actions one night.
A FLICKER IN ETERNITY (Sharon Yamato & Ann Kaneko)
The true WWII story of Stanley Hayami, a talented teenager caught between his dream of becoming an artist and his duty to his country. Based on Hayami’s diary and letters, this coming-of-age tale chronicles his life behind barbed wire and as a member of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team.
WINNER Best Short Documentary
HIBAKUSHA (Steve Nguyen & Choz Belen)
“Hibakusha” is the real life story of Kaz Suyeishi, an atomic bomb survivor, who revisits her past experiences during her early years in Hiroshima, Japan.

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 15, 2013, 6:00PM

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 15, 2013, 7:00PM
COUCH & POTATOES (Chris Lam & Eunsoo Jeong)
The claymation, stop motion short film “Couch & Potatoes” is the story of two TV-watching enthusiasts pioneer a clever way to live on their couch until an unexpected event forces them back into their youthful past.
WINNER Best Animated Short Film
A young couple are on the brink of divorce when they are audited by the IRS. As they cope with their roller-coaster of emotions and attempt to move on, they must sort through the last year of receipts. Through the audit process, the couple begins to understand what went wrong.
WINNER Best Comedy

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 15, 2013, 9:00PM
In the animated short “The Shopgirl,” and store clerk meets some very unusal customers who find out she in no ordinary shopgirl.
WILL (Paolo Valdes)
“Will” is the story of a young man’s journey that slips back and forth between what appears to be two twisted realities. In one world, (though apprehensive of his success) he is a musician on the rise that could not ask for a better life and is determined to stay awake to keep things going that way. In the other world, he is completely down on his luck and does whatever it takes to stay asleep and live within his dreams.
METAL GEAR (Agustin Rodriquez)
Based on characters from the video game of the same name, a lonely covert operator is sent to assassinate his own mentor turned-traitor…but what will he do when he discovers that the target is his father?
A man consumed by vengeance realizes the futility of his quest.
PUPPETEER (Pauline Lam)
LAST GAME (Mike Cutrone)

After coming home to discover his wife murdered and daughter missing, a man desperately tries to find those responsible with the hope that his daughter might still be alive.
REAL TALK (Patrick Ng)
Pax discovers his best friend’s true alliance.
A young women realizes that in her line of business, she can’t trust anyone. The fight for survival ensues as she becomes entangled in the cycle of revenge. Killing is all she knows, and it seems as though she can never escape it.
WINNER Best Action Short

12:00AM – 2:00AM

HU’S GAME (Shaun Kim)
The animated short film “Hu’s Game” is the story of the game to make friends.
A letter from a vagabond with flowers for someone he loves.
The story of the bond between two women.
WINNER Best Cinematography Short Film
30 ½ (Phoenix Liu)
The perfect love is the love that has never begun.
WINNER Best Original Score Short Film
VOLTE-FACE (Mary Chin)
A second generation Asian American high school senior must make a choice between following her dreams and her duty to her family.
KUYA KO (Dean Banting)
After being humiliated and bullied on the basketball court, the only thing that 14 year-old Daryll wants is a new pair of sneakers. Instead, he comes home to an older brother who he hasn’t seen in five years. With a language barrier, cultural differences, and a small room the brothers must share, Daryll will learn an important lesson about family.
WONDER BOY (Corrie Chen)
Ten year old Clancy is stuck between a life he doesn’t know and a life he wants to belong to. Some problems are universal.
TU & EU (Eddie Shieh)
“Tu & Eu” asks the question, “Does love conquer all?”
THE TELEGRAM MAN (James Khehtie)
SENTAKU BASAMI (Clothes Pegs) (Vichian Sutipornprachum)
Feeling emotionally abandoned by her husband and tired of her routine and repetitive household chores, a housewife decides to break free.

GRANDPA (Steve Chen)
The documentary short “Grandpa” is about the quest for finding one’s identity.
TAIWANFAMOUS (Sarah Tadayon)
Sarah, a Southern California girl with dreams of a film career ends up in Taiwan as a professional talk show guest. After appearing on several shows, she realizes she is being type cast as a foreigner, and furthermore, after being asked by her agents to lose more weight and perform unusual plastic surgery, she begins to lose her cool. She is willing to make some sacrifices, but at what cost, and for what reward?
LOST YEARS (Kenda Gee)
An epic documentary touching upon 150 years of the Chinese diaspora in Canada, USA, New Zealand and Australia; covering four generations of racism as revealed through the journey and family story of Kenda Gee. WINNER Best Documentary Film


Life is full of hard knocks, but you should never stop answering.
Kayla Tanaka, 16, is half-Japanese, half-white, totally American who lives with her sister and her parents in a low-income section of Los Angeles and confronts the idea of being a “Model Minority.” WINNER Best Drama and Best Director
Video: Academy Award Winner Chris Tashima Talks About His Roles in Lily Mariye’s Model Minority and Lil Tokyo Reporter

MIRROR (Q-Hyun Kim)
In the animated short “Mirror,” two cats, living in completely different worlds, switch places through a mirror and experience each others life.
WAKING UP (Yuta Okamura)
An inspirational tale about the lessons death can offer, “Waking Up” follows a talented young artist who is forced to face the dreams he gave up on years ago.
INCOMING (Mozhan Marno)
A loner, who has recently lost custody of her son, meets an endearing stranger who likes to sunbathe in the parking lot beneath her balcony.
FRACTURED (Terry Sasaki)
“fractured” is the story of a not-so-innocent relationship with a twist.
A LITTLE LOST (Anupam Lahiri)
The relationship between the son and his demented father gets in to a rift as the son plans for an assisted living facility for his father.
REUNION (Jason Z. Wong)
A reunion with a long lost childhood friend uncovers secrets that give the suicidal daughter of a dying preacher a second chance at life.
WINNER Best Ensemble Cast Short Film and WINNER Best Actress Short Film
DUMPLING (Wesley Du)
An ex-boxer desperate to connect with his only son gives him a gift on his 21st birthday that will change their lives forever. WINNER Best Dramatic Short, WINNER Best Director Short Film and WINNER Best Actor Short Film
HER STORY (Aaron Au)
A young girl learns to cope with slavery until she breaks free and discovers the world outside is not what is expected.
WINNER Best Supporting Actor Short Film

12:00AM – 2:00AM

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2013, 12:30PM
HIDING GAME (David Applebee)
When two thieves break into a family home, Aiden is the only boy they missed. He has the chance to save his family, but what can a little boy do against two dangerous thieves?
STRANGERS (Michael Aki)
A late-night contract murder, carried out with methodical ferocity, is followed by a kidnapping, and these violent but silently accomplished acts set the tone for an atmospheric neo-noir set in LA. The dead man’s girlfriend turns out to be the hitman’s new assignment, but an unfamiliar longing for connection stay his hand, and the two embark on an odd-couple odyssey that necessarily evolves into a getaway.
WINNER Best Actress

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2013, 3:00PM
THE ESCAPE (Andre Suyra)
Animated short
MERDE! (Earl McDaniel III)
A short documentary chronicling the work of Bollywood dance company, blue13 and their first all original performance at the Ford Theatre in Los Angeles, CA.
WHAT’S THE T? (Cecilio Asuncion)
What’s the T is a documentary that explores the challenges, successes and lives of five trans gender women. These five women represent normality and abnormality, seamlessly in their daily efforts to achieve a balance of feminine and masculine as the day may require. These women are prime examples of reality and self-identity.

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2013, 5:00PM
Animated short.
RUBY BOOBY (Jonathan Rannells)
A quirky woman searches for her father, Jose Feliciano.

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2013, 7:00PM
Wing works at a video rental shop, carrying out routine duties together with his petite colleague day in day out. Gang members come to collect ‘security fees’ and leave behind a few threatening words. The incident makes Wing decide to take some action to change his life.
ANITA HO (Steve Myung)
A Korean American man meets his Chinese American girlfriend’s parents for the first time. Drama, cultural struggles, and laughter ensue.
WINNER Best Ensemble Cast

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2013, 9:00PM
In the animated short “The Boy and the Tree” a boy grows up in space having never left his home world. One day, a supernova forces him to confront the world beyond.
Shanghai has a park where parents can match-make their unwed children. This is just one love story in a city of 20 million lovers.
BLEACHED (Jess dela Merced)
“Bleached” is the story of Lenny, a Filipino-American girl, who is forced by her image-obsessed mother to use a bleaching cream to lighten the color of her skin.
DIM SUM NOODLE (Kent Leung & Milton Ng)
Two best friends encounter some problems with kung fu artists, after ordering the last box of dim sum noodles.
POTHOUND (Christopher Guiness)
The point-of-view of a street dog in relation to the world around her. She runs into adversity and forms alliances.
The Gelephant. noun, often attributive – ge.le.fant The Gay (?) Elephant in the Room. Mia brings her Gelephant boyfriend to meet her friends – is he or isn’t he?
WINNER Best Short Comedy
MIXED BLOOMS (Destri Martino)
Meet The Fluges, a modern sitcom family made especially for the web! They come to you via this six-episode web series which chronicles the comedic ups and downs of a bi-racial (Caucasian and Asian) family who runs a small suburban flower shop.
THE ROBBERY (Chris Hambright)
Jimmy and Paul are old friends, so when Jimmy is stranded in a neighborhood in nothing but his boxers, he calls Paul to help him out.
A young Chinese guy tries to learn how to be more proper.
Joo Si auditions for the opportunity of a lifetime to be a principal backup dancer for the sexy female pop singing sensation, The 4Play Ladies.
WINNER Best Supporting Actress Short Film
BBOY (Vincent Tran & Michael Simmons)
Growing up in the suburbs of middle America, Vicious (Vincent Tran) finds himself blending into the blandness of his environment. While walking through the city, his life is forever transformed when he sees a bboy breakin on the streets. In his ongoing battle to have his dreams be taken seriously by professionals and his peers, he discovers his own inner strength, and his true love for Bboy Culture.
WINNER Best Editing Short Film

12:00AM – 2:00AM

For information
Click here for tickets.

Other articles by Lia Chang:
Video: Academy Award Winner Chris Tashima Talks About His Roles in Lily Mariye’s Model Minority and Lil Tokyo Reporter
Lily Mariye’s Model Minority, Jayshree Janu Kharpade’s Fire in Our Hearts, Eliaichi Kimaro’s A Lot Like You, Vincent Sandoval’s Señorita, and Liang Cheng’s My Spiritual Medicine among AAIFF’12 Award Winners
AAIFF’12: Lily Mariye’s Model Minority, starring Jessica Tuck, Nichole Bloom, Chris Tashima, Helen Slater, Laura Innes and Takayo Fisher, screens at Clearview Chelsea Cinemas on August 4, 2012
Jeanne Sakata’s Hold These Truths, Starring Joel de la Fuente, Plays Honolulu Theatre for Youth’s Tenney Theatre, February 21 – March 2, 2013
Ron Domingo, Francis Jue and Jon Norman Schneider Join the Cast of the World Premiere of Paper Dolls at the Tricycle Theatre, February 28 – April 13, 2013
Kumu Kahua Theatre Presents World Premiere of Daniel Akiyama’s A Cage of Fireflies, January 24-February 24, 2013
Ruy Iskandar and Yuekun Wu Set for Signature Theatre’s Production of David Henry Hwang’s The Dance and The Railroad, February 5 – March 17, 2013
Michelle Krusiec and Alex Moggridge Star in David Henry Hwang’s Chinglish at South Coast Repertory, January 25 – February 24, 2013
Historic Gathering of Civil Rights Heroes at Fred Korematsu Day Heroes Celebration in San Francisco on January 27, 2013
Photos: Partying with the Cast of David Henry Hwang’s Golden Child
Harlem Nights with Lorey Hayes, Actress, Director and Award-Winning Playwright of Power Play and Massinissa
Performing Arts Images from the Asian American Pacific Islander Collection on Display at the Library of Congress to Celebrate APA Heritage Month
Photos: Yellow Fever Playwright Rick Shiomi Explores New Territory with An All-Female Cast
Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.

Lia Chang

Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist.
All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2013 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at

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