Entertainment Spotlight

  • Catching Up: Santana, Taj Mahal and a déjà vu ‘Blue Christmas’

    Posted by Ben Fong-Torres

    Catching Up: Santana, Taj Mahal and a déjà vu ‘Blue Christmas’
    By Ben Fong-Torres It’s short shrift time. I have a life that’s ripe (and slightly wrinkled) for blogs and tweeting; for facebooking and updating. I’m just no good at it. My last column here on AsianConnections was about the memorial in late July for my sister Shirley. My last posting on the authors’ site, Redroom, was about a radio promo tour I did (20 stops, all on the phone...

Arts & Entertainment Articles

  • New Asian American super PAC fights GOP Senate candidate Pete Hoekstra's controversial ad. Actress Lisa Chan apologizes.

    Posted by Suzanne Kai

    A new super PAC is demanding an apology from GOP Senate candidate Pete Hoekstra for the broadcast of his controversial ad in Michigan on Super Bowl Sunday depicting negative stereotypes of Asian Americans. The ad shows an Asian female speaking in broken English, cycling through what appears to be rice paddies, "Your economy get very weak. Ours get very good."

    Actress Lisa Chan apologized for her involvement. The recent UCLA graduate wrote on her Facebook page,"I am deeply sorry for any pain that the character I portrayed brought to my communities."

    “In an age where virtually all Americans have moved forward on race relations, it seems Congressman Hoekstra has taken a giant step back. We are here to say we are not going to put up with it. We are here to tell him we are outraged and demand an official apology," said Jesse Tangkhpanya, the national political director for the American Values super PAC.

    In addition to the Super Bowl ad which was aired in Michigan, the GOP Senate hopeful posted a website accusing GOP rival candidate Senator Debbie Stabenow, (D-MIch.) of supporting deficit spending. The Hoekstra campaign website www.DebbieSpenditnow.com showed the Superbowl ad, with Chinese characters, paper lanterns and dragons.

    Amidst the firestorm from members of the AAPI community and mounting pressure from both Republicans and Democrats, the ad has been taken down. It is off Hoekstra's Facebook page, YouTube channel, and the website now reverts to Hoekstra's Senate campaign site.

    The day after the Super Bowl Hoekstra was asked by Fox's Megyn Kelly whether his Super Bowl ad depicted an unfair stereotype referencing the actress' faked broken dialect. Hoekstra replied,"It's not a stereotype at all"...."Through the creative (design of the ad) this is a young woman in China who's speaking English. That's quite an achivement."..."There's nothing in here that has a racial tint at all," Hoekstra said.

    Super PAC American Values posted this video in response to...

  • "Linsanity"- Jeremy Lin: ESPN fires writer and suspends broadcaster for its racist headline and remarks -New York Knicks Sensation has Captured our Hearts

    Posted by Suzanne Kai



    July 17, 2012

    Goodbye New York, Hello Houston! 


    After weeks of speculation, Tuesday night the New York Knicks announced it would not match the Houston Rockets' offer.


    Emotions have been running high with Knicks fans. To quote writer Ian O'Connor at ESPNNewYork.com, "Jim Dolan just made one of the dumbest moves of his basketball life"...


    Meanwhile, Lin remains a gentleman, thanking the Knicks and showing enthusiasm for Houston. 


    Twitter comments: (@JLin7)


    "Extremely excited and honored to be a Houston Rocket again!! ‪#RedNation‬" "Much love and thankfulness to the Knicks and New York for your support this past year...easily the best year of my life ‪#ForeverGrateful‬"


    For the latest on Jeremy Lin:



    July 5, 2012


    This afternoon Jeremy Lin agreed to a multi-million dollar offer sheet by the Houston Rockets. Numerous sources say that the Houston Rockets' offer is reportedly a four year $28.8 million deal with Lin. The contract cannot be signed until after the NBA moratorium ends next Wednesday, July 11, 2012, then the New York Knicks have three days to match the Rockets' offer or let him go. This story is evolving day by day, and in some cases hour by hour.


    (Video image by Suzanne Joe Kai at a press interview with Jeremy Lin in the NY Knicks locker room at Madison Square Garden March 11, 2012)





    February 21, 2012

    "Can't escape race, no matter what," says writer William Wong who pens his fourth column on Linsanity.

    And as Bill points out, William C. Rhoden, a sports columnist for The New York Times who is African American laments that there's been no equivalent exuberant, mostly positive madness for a sudden African American athletic star the way there has been for Lin and Tebow, and that African American athletes continue to be stereotyped negatively. 

    Linsanity is more than an APA kid finally making it as a break-out star in the NBA. He has captured the hearts and...

  • Director Jennifer Yuh Nelson Wins Annie Award

    Posted by Suzanne Kai

    Jennifer Yuh Nelson was named best director for KUNG FU PANDA 2 by the International Animated Film Society (ASIFA-Hollywood) at the 39th Annual Annie Awards.

    Nelson is the first solo woman to win the award for Directing in a Feature Production. KUNG FU PANDA 2 also won an Annie Award for Best Animated Special Production. 

    The film is also nominated for an Oscar in the Best Animated Feature category.

    AsianConnections team was at Kung Fu Panda 2's red carpet premiere in Los Angeles in 2011

  • Asian American Talent Shines at Kollaboration 11 by Amy Lieu

    Posted by Admin

    Asian American Talent Shines at Kollaboration 11

    By Amy Lieu

    With every strum of the guitar, tap of the drum, tune of melody, and dance to the beat, song and dance performances were engrossed with emotion, energy, and passion.The annual Asian American talent show competition, Kollaboration 11, presented its eleventh year and season finale at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live November 5, 2011. The flagship show in Los Angeles was its last stop after touring for 15 shows across 12 other cities in the United States. Its motto: empowerment through entertainment.

    Many notable Asian Americans graced the pre-show red carpet including actress Bai Ling (“The Crow” and “Lost),” and journalist Lisa Ling, host of “Our America” on the Oprah Winfrey Network.

    With the underrepresentation of Asian Americans in U.S. entertainment, Kollaboration gives popular and up-and-coming artists a stage to showcase their talents. The competition show aims to inspire and empower young Asian Americans to pursue their dreams in entertainment, a career path that some of the artists have said has not always been encouraged by their parents. 

    Lights dimmed and curtains opened as former contestant Ensemble Memo from Kollaboration Acoustic 5 (the acoustic version of the talent show earlier this year) opened the night’s performances. Special guest performer and popular YouTube singer Clara C serenaded the audience with her sweet voice, tambourine, guitar, and accordion.

    Eight talented contestants vied for the coveted title. Rap, rock and alternative band Afterschoolspecial from San Diego, rocked their hearts out. They were nominated for the 2009 San Diego Music  Awards for Best Hip Hop Act and Best Hip Hop Album.

    Andrew Figueroa Chiang and The Blazing Rays of the Sun brought high energy and big harmonies with their lead singer on the keyboard.

    Seattle-based band Lion’s Ambition fused hip-hop and rock in their soulful performance. Formed only in 2008, the group has already opened...