My Bev’s Girl Films producing partner Garth Kravits and I are now award-winning filmmakers because our debut indie short, Hide and Seek, was named among the top ten films of the Asian American Film Lab‘s 11th Annual 72 Hour Film Shootout filmmaking competition, at the sold-out World Premiere screening on Saturday afternoon at Cinema Village East during the 38th Asian American International Film Festival in New York.
Garth is a very talented actor, singer, composer and musician, so I knew we were more than up to the challenge of writing, shooting, editing, scoring and delivering our 5 minute short film, within 72 hours of learning the theme – Two Faces – at the Shootout launch party on June 4th.
A worldwide filmmaking competition celebrating gender and ethnic diversity in film, Shootout teams compete for cash and prizes and the chance to have their films screened at the prestigious Asian American International Film Festival, the only festival of its kind on the East Coast, as well as at the Asians on Film Festival in Los Angeles, California.
I seized upon the idea of playing a character with two very different personalities.
I starred in Hide and Seek, which we co-produced and co-wrote. Making the film was an exhilarating ride. No stranger to multi-tasking, Garth is in the film, shared camera operator duties with Evan Daves, composed the original score by singing his vision of the soundtrack over the phone to guitarist Tyler Kent in the last two hours before our deadline, directed and edited the film. The cast also features Evan Daves and Alicia Manns.
At the World premiere screening, filmmakers learn for the first time whether they have made the Top Ten winners, and individual prizes are awarded in numerous categories. You could feel the collective breath being held.
What?! In the darkness of the theater after the eighth film played, I sat there in shock as our title credits for Hide and Seek appeared on the screen. I was so overwhelmed that I had tears streaming down my face.
Hide and Seek speaks to the societal challenge that women, and especially women of color, endure every day. To look in the mirror and to hope to see a face other than your own. One that is closer to what magazines, television and movies define as beautiful or even normal. What face do you see when you look in the mirror?
Because of competitions like the Asian American Film Lab’s 72 Hour Shootout, we had the invaluable and rare opportunity to tell our fully realized story with an Asian American woman in the lead role. Hide and Seek is a very personal film to me as I began my life in front of the camera as a model at the age of 15, before working in film, television and theater.
The icing on the cake was to be recognized with a Best Actress, Film Lab 72 Hour Shootout of 2015 nomination.
After all of the winners had been announced and we filed out of the theater, men and women shared how they had been moved or touched by the film, finding it inspirational and self-affirming. They related to the character’s feeling of being invisible, being unhappy with her looks and uncomfortable in her own skin, and having the need to embrace another form of beauty or attractiveness other than her own.
Check out our movie in the link below.
This year’s 72 Hour Shootout judges included Emmy nominated director Rodrigo Garcia, ABC Executive Director of Casting Marci Phillips, playwright David Henry Hwang, agent David Elliott, stuntman Lane Leavitt, and director Bertha Bay-Sa Pan. Several of the judges were in attendance at the premiere and awards ceremony and judges David Henry Hwang and Bertha Bay-Sa Pan, who could not appear in person, gave remarks via video and congratulated the filmmakers.
Click below to see all of the winners.
For more information, check out www.asianamericanfilmlab.com
The top 40 72 Hour Shootout films can be viewed on the Film Lab’s online channel AAFLTV (subscribe for free at YouTube.com/asamfilmlab and many will also be featured on the Film Lab’s TV series, “Film Lab Presents.”
Lia Chang is an award-winning filmmaker, a Best Actress nominee, a 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, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She has guest starred on “One Life to Live,” “As the World Turns,” and “New York Undercover.” She is profiled in Jade Magazine.
#AAIFF2015:11th Annual 72 Hour Shootout World Premiere Film Screening at Village Cinema East, Wrap Party and Red Carpet Awards Ceremony at The Azure on July 25
Behind the Scenes of the Asian American Film Lab’s 72 Hour Shootout with Lia Chang, Garth Kravits, Evan Daves and Alicia Manns in HIDE AND SEEK
Photos: The 11th Annual 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Launch Party at The Korea Society; TWO FACES is this year’s theme
Jennifer Betit Yen, Erin Quill and Lia Chang are co-hosting AAFLTV’s “Focus on the Philippines” featuring MATUD NILA, a series of animated creations by artist John Day Film Lab Selected for WNYC/WQXR
Photos: Traveling through the mouth of the Dragon with BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA’s James Hong, Peter Kwong, Lia Chang, Gerald Okamura, George Cheung, Al Leong, Jeff Imada, James Lew, Gary Goldman, Eric Lee
BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA Cast Reunion featured in BLACK BELT MAGAZINE August/September 2015
Photos: #EmptyMet Tour with Chief Digital Officer Sree Sreenivasan
China: Through the Looking Glass Exhibition Extended through September 7 at Metropolitan Museum
Coming to America through The Angel Island Immigration Station
Crafting a Career
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