Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Lia Chang Photos: Aasif Mandvi, Sheetal Sheth, Jimmy O. Yang, Raymond J. Lee, Tobias Wong and more celebrate HBO’s AAPI Heritage Month Screening of Jonathan Yi’s “East of Main Street: Taking the Lead” Documentary

Veronica Reyes-How, Raymond J. Lee, Aasif Mandvi, Tobias Wong, Sheetal Sheth and Jimmy O. Yang attend HBO's screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) in New York on May 6, 2015.. Photo by Lia Chang

Veronica Reyes-How, Raymond J. Lee, Aasif Mandvi, Tobias Wong, Sheetal Sheth and Jimmy O. Yang attend HBO’s screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) Studio in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

In honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month and the fifth installment of its acclaimed special East of Main Street, HBO hosted a VIP screening and panel discussion with the stars of Jonathan Yi’s East of Main Street: Taking The Lead on Wednesday, May 6 at Root (Drive-In) Studio in New York City.

Director Jonathan Yi attends HBO's screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

Director Jonathan Yi attends HBO’s screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) Studio in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

The party featured divine tastings from local Asian American restaurants Taiwanese eatery Baohaus, Filipino hotspot Jeepney, Korean noodle bar Mokbar and Indian outpost Dosa Royale, with cocktails provided by Hennessy V.S.O.P Privilege and beer by Heineken.

Directed and produced by Jonathan Yi and featuring Asian American stars like Lucy Liu, BD Wong, Russell Wong, Aasif Mandvi, Sheetal Sheth and Daniel Dae Kim, East of Main Street: Taking The Lead showcases a select group of Asian Americans in various stages of their movie and television careers.

Hot 97 on-air radio personality Miss Info moderated a panel after the screening featuring actor and comedian Aasif Mandvi (The Daily Show correspondent, “Halal In The Family” and “The Brink”), award-winning film, television and theater actress and producer Sheetal Sheth, actor and stand-up comedian Jimmy O. Yang (Jian-Yang in HBO’s “Silicon Valley”),  director Jonathan Yi (East of Main Street: Taking The Lead), and executive producer Louis Tancredi.

Executive producer Louis Tancredi, director Jonathan Yi, moderator Miss Info, actors Aasif Mandvi, Jimmy O. Yang and Sheetal Sheth attend HBO's screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

Executive producer Louis Tancredi, director Jonathan Yi, moderator Miss Info, actors Aasif Mandvi, Jimmy O. Yang and Sheetal Sheth attend HBO’s screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) Studio in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

Directed and produced by Jonathan YiEast of Main Street: Taking the Lead showcases the personal journeys of a talented group of performers including Lucy Liu, Daniel Dae Kim, BD Wong, Aasif Mandvi, Russell WongLucille SoongJimmy O. Yang, Melanie Kannokada, Dennis OhSheetal ShethRaymond J. LeeNivedita KulkarniTobias WongMichelle GoikeVeronica Reyes-How and Katarina Zhu, through in-depth interviews. The special gives viewers inside access into their lives and art, from their daily struggles to their greatest achievements.

Video & Photos: BD Wong and Russell Wong Guest Star on ‘NCIS: NEW ORLEANS’, Episode 1.13 – The Walking Dead 

“This year, with so much attention being paid to racial and cultural diversity in Hollywood, we wanted to examine what it takes for Asian Americans to succeed in the entertainment industry,” said Yi.

Jackie Gagne, Vice President of Multicultural Marketing, HBO, actors Sheetal Sheth, Aasif Mandvi, Jimmy O. Yang and Lucinda Martinez, SVP of Multicultural Marketing, HBO attend HBO's screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) Studio in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

Jackie Gagne, Vice President of Multicultural Marketing, HBO, actors Sheetal Sheth, Aasif Mandvi, Jimmy O. Yang and Lucinda Martinez, SVP of Multicultural Marketing, HBO attend HBO’s screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) Studio in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

“The award-winning East of Main Street series garnered attention from prevalent actors who expressed interest in getting involved,” said HBO Senior Vice President for Multicultural Marketing Lucinda Martinez. “We’re excited to give audiences the opportunity to hear from and be inspired by them, with this newest installment.”

East of Main Street: Taking the Lead can be seen on HBO On Demand, HBO GO and HBO NOW throughout the entire month.

About HBO
Home Box Office, Inc. is the premium television programming subsidiary of Time Warner Inc. and the world’s most successful pay TV service, providing the two television services – HBO® and Cinemax® – to approximately 122 million subscribers worldwide.  The services offer the popular subscription video-on-demand products HBO On Demand® and Cinemax On Demand®, as well as HBO GO® and MAX GO®, HD feeds and multiplex channels. Beginning in April 2015, HBO will also offer a standalone video streaming service, HBO NOW, in the U.S. Internationally, HBO branded television networks, along with the subscription video-on-demand products HBO On Demand and HBO GO, bring HBO services to over 60 countries.  HBO and Cinemax programming is sold into over 150 countries worldwide.

Director Jonathan Yi attends HBO's screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

Director Jonathan Yi attends HBO’s screening of East of Main Street: Taking the Lead at Root (Drive-In) in New York on May 6, 2015. Photo by Lia Chang

About Jonathan Yi
Jonathan Yi is a director and cinematographer, most often working in the realms of commercial production and documentary. His documentary feature “Mad Tiger” will be in theaters nationwide in August 2015. His client list in the advertising world includes Nike, Smirnoff, HP, Kleenex, JetBlue, Stride, Trident, Kotex, Microsoft, SAP, TD Ameritrade, Schick and American Express, among many others.

Outside of the ad space, Yi has directed five installments of HBO’s award-winning series East of Main Street and shot projects for Paul McCartney, Twisted Sister, Poison, Daniel Johnston, Mates of State and The Locust. Shift, a film that Jonathan shot, directed and produced, has also won many accolades and played in many film festivals. As a director/cinematographer, Yi’s work has been showcased in such magazines as Creativity and Vice. Yi teaches 16mm and digital cinematography at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. He also consults for Canon USA. Yi attended New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts Film Program.

Credits
Director and Producer: Jonathan Yi
Executive Producers: Louis TancrediChrissie Hines

cropped-lia-chang_photo-by-carlos-flores-3.jpgLia Chang is an actor, a performance and fine art botanical photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon and Taxman. She has guest starred on “One Life to Live,” “As the World Turns,” and “New York Undercover.” Lia starred as Carole Barbara in Lorey Hayes’ Power Play at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., with Pauletta Pearson Washington and Roscoe Orman. She is profiled in Jade Magazine.

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Crafting a Career

Click here for the Lia Chang Articles Archive and here for the Lia Chang Photography Website.
All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2015 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 liachangpr@gmail.com

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