17 Asian American Filmmakers Featured at Sundance (Part 2)

January 28, 2015

Part 1

The Chinese Mayor (Dir. Hao Zhou) -- 86 minutes
(World Cinema Documentary Competition)

This documentary by Hao Zhou focuses on Mayor Geng
Tanbo of the city of Datong, once an ancient thriving capital but now the most
polluted city in the country further crippled by debt, corruption and an
unstable economic future. The documentary captures Mayor Tenbo’s attempts to
return Datong to its former glory by bulldozing old properties and relocating a
half-million of its residents.

New Frontiers Exhibitions/Installations 

The Frontier Exhibitions/Installations will be open
from Noon to 8 PM on Friday, January 23rd, and 11 AM -- 8 PM from January 24-30
and from 11AM -- 3 PM on Saturday, January 31st, at 573 Main Street, 2nd and
3rd floors, Park City. The exhibitions are free and open to the public.

Zero Point (Dir. Danfung Dennis)


From Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Danfung
Dennis, Zero Point is the first documentary made for virtual reality (VR) about
VR. Basically, it is a documentary film specifically shot for viewing in a VR
headset, the Oculus Rift. The documentary itself chronicles the history of VR,
follows some of its pioneers, researchers and developers, and charts the future
of the field.

1979 Revolution Game (Interactive Story/Game) (Dirs.
Navid Khonsari & Vassiliki Khonsari)

1979 Revolution: Black Friday is the first of a
nine-episode immersive non-fiction game designed to tell an emotionally
compelling and historically true narrative, while giving players the experience
of making moral choices under extreme situations as they navigate the streets
of an Iranian uprising. From the husband-and-wife team of former Rockstar Games
designer Navid Khonsari  (Pindemonium) and
filmmaker Vassilki Khonsari (Pulling John), 1979 Revolution Game is a
combination of an interactive historical documentary with a decision-making
game that places the player right in the center of the Iranian Revolution.

Possibilia (Interactive Narrative Film)
(Dirs. Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert aka “Daniels”)


From the talented director duo “Daniels” -- Daniel
Kwan and Daniel Scheinert --  who brought
you that zany music video for DJ Snake and Lil John’s “Turn Down for What” as
well as fascinating short films such as Interesting Ball --  comes an interactive narrative film entitled Possibilia starring Alex Karpovsky (HBO’s Girls, Inside Llewyn Davis) and Zoe
Jarman (The Mindy Project). The film is interactive in that participants can
choose how a given scene plays out and ultimately shape the unfolding of the
story of two quarrelling lovers over 16 different parallel universes.

Films & Documentaries

Daytimer (Dir. Riz Ahmed) -- 16 minutes

Daytimer is a short film by Riz Ahmed set in 1999
London, when a young boy plays hooky from school and doesn’t come home in order
to attend his first daytime rave.

Oh Lucy! (Dir. Atsuko Hirayanagi) -- 22


Oh Lucy! is set in modern-day Tokyo and revolves
around Setsuko, a 55-year old single office worker. When Setsuko is given a
blonde wig and a new identity, Lucy, by a young English teacher, she discovers
emotions and awakens desires she never knew existed in Atsuko Hirayanagi’s
award-winning short, which was also an Official Selection of both the Melbourne
International Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival, as
well as being a Second Prize winner for a short film at the Cinefondation Selection
at Cannes. The film also won 1st Prize (the Wasserman Award at the
First Run Film Festival at NYU Tisch Asia, the NYU Tisch Asia Post-Production
Award, 1st Prize in the NYU Fusion Film Festival -- Graduate Short
Screenplay category and 1st Prize in the NYU Tisch Asia Thesis
Script Competition.

Om Rider (Dir. Takeshi Murata) -- 12

An animated short by graphic, visual and 3D artist Takeshi
Murata, Om Rider is set in “a vast desert based in neon hues,” where a misfit musician
werewolf rides at high speeds across an unrelenting desert to face a mysterious

Hotel 22 (Dir. Elizabeth Lo) -- 8 minutes
(Short Documentary)


is a short documentary by award-winning filmmaker Elizabeth Lo concerning
the Line 22 public bus that runs in Silicon Valley, which transforms into an
unofficial shelter for the homeless, hence the title “Hotel 22”. The film
captures one night that unfolds on the “Hotel 22” bus.

I Am Hong Kong (Dir. Flora Lau) -- 5 minutes
(Short Documentary)

with The Chinese Mayor, Feature Documentary)

I Am Hong Kong is a short documentary about The
Umbrella Movement, which reveals the passion of protesting citizens who brought
about a peaceful yet powerful social movement that made news headlines around
the world. The film compiles interviews with various participants and observers
in Hong Kong, and asks them what the movement means to them.

Timothy Tau is a writer and filmmaker based in Los Angeles. His short story, The Understudy, won the Hyphen Asian American Short Story Contest (sponsored by the Asian American Writer's Workshop) and appears in the Winter 2011 issue of Hyphen Magazine, the Survival Issue. He is currently working on a film project about Asian American cinema pioneers set in the 60s, 70s and 80s. 





Ari Laurel

Ari Laurel’s work has appeared in Passages North, Ninth Letter, The Conium Review, Yellow Chair, Bitch Media, The Toast, Quartz, Duende, Kartika Review and Hyphen. She was featured in the 2015 Kearny Street Workshop APAture Festival and was a 2012 finalist for the PEN/USA Emerging Voices Fellowship.