What’s Going On? Everything, All at Once
By Ben Fong-Torres
MAY 8, 2022
With “Like a Rolling Stone: The Life and Times of Ben Fong-Torres” the documentary about me, now out today and streaming merrily along on Netflix, I’m officially in the film industry.
Actually, that’s been the case since last June, when the documentary, which stole its title from a popular column at Asian Connections created by director Suzanne Joe Kai's son Mike when he was 14, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in Manhattan.
In the months since, the film, which was produced, written and directed by Suzanne, screened at various other festivals, picked up awards, including a Critics Choice honor, a 2022 Nomination by the Writers Guild of America for Best Documentary Screenplay, a Best Music Film Award at the Newport Beach Film Festival, the Audience Award from the Asian American Film Festival in San Diego, and scored more than 112 press reviews and mentions (so far) - all quite positive reviews.
And I find myself mingling with movie people. In March, I attended the premiere of “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” starring Michelle Yeoh, at the Castro Theater here in San Francisco.
Our only previous connection was at a Lunar New Year parade, in 2018, when she was the glamorous grand marshall and I was co-anchor of KTVU’s broadcast.
From a distance, we waved at each other. Or maybe she was just waving to her fans.
This time, we met. At the packed...
"American Born Chinese", an exciting, groundbreaking series is slated to premiere in 2023. The Disney+ series was introduced to the Asian American Journalists Association's National Convention this summer. The convention was attended by more than 1,500 journalists from all over the world.
The Disney+ series is based on Gene Luen Yang's award-winning graphic novel. The main character, Jin Wang, played by actor Ben Wang, navigates supernatural action-comedy adventures between his immigrant family life and teenage life at school. His journey is propelled into a realm of Chinese mythological gods and creatures when he meets a new foreign exchange student.
Cast announcements include Ben Wang (MacGyver), Michelle Yeoh (Everything Everywhere All at Once/Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings), and Poppy Liu (Better Call Saul). This Disney cast will be directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, who also helmed Marvel's Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.
The President of Disney Branded Television, Ayo Davis said, "We are delighted to continue our relationship with Melvin Mar and Jake Kasdan and thrilled that Destin Daniel Cretton is set to direct. The team are visionaries in bringing character-driven adventures to life, and we cannot wait for our audience to experience this fantastically memorable and imaginative adaptation of the graphic novel. This is a great universal story that moves between worlds and explores the impact of culture, identity, and acceptance...
By Suzanne Joe Kai and Martha Shaw
March 12, 2023
Everything Everywhere All at Once wins Best Picture!
Nominated for an astounding 11 awards and taking home 7 that night, this film and its historic implications are epic.
Michelle Yeoh is the first Asian actress to win the Best Actress award for her role in the most nominated film "Everything, Everywhere All At Once."
A film industry veteran, Yeoh, 60, received great praise for her role and during her acceptance speech she called the moment "history in the making - This is proof to dream big, that dreams do come true."
“I hope I did right by you. I care deeply about every one of you” says Paul Rogers during the acceptance of his Best Film Editing Award. “I know I’m standing up here by myself, but I am not, I am hundreds of people. I’m hundreds of people… "We just won an Oscar” Jamie Lee Curtis exclaims in gratitude for her Best Supporting Actress Oscar to the community who made these wins possible.
“This. This! Is the American dream!” Ke Huy Quan’s powerful words accepting his Best Supporting Actor award resonate with anyone with a dream, and especially immigrants and minorities around the world. “My Mom is 84 years old, and she’s at home watching. Mom! I just won an Oscar!”. Unable to contain his emotions, Quan begins his tearful acceptance speech. “My journey started on a boat. I spent a year in a refugee camp. But somehow, I ended up here, on...
October 13, 2022
By Suzanne Joe Kai
TIME MAGAZINE WORLD'S 100 MOST INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE OF 2022 includes actor Simu Liu. In fact he is ON the cover of Time Magazine - one of different cover images Time publishes for this annual list. Another first.
Emmy nominated actor Sandra Oh writes in TIME magazine about her fellow Canadian actor from Ontario: "As a fellow Ontarioan, I was already excited about Simu Liu when he was having "Canada success" on Kim's Convenience."
"But since then, he's been on a path that no Chinese Canadian has walked before. He's part of the first generation of Asian Americans and Canadians to reach true stardom."
"It's been amazing to see how beautifully he's balancing representing our community and staying true to himself. I saw Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings three times."
"I was so pleased to see Simu exercise his comedy chops, his fighting skills, his gravitas. I love his ability to poke fun at himself. And, of course, the guy looks great in a suit."
"Simu has been working hard to get through closed doors, and now he wants to hold those doors open for others. You see him doing that through the way he speaks out against hateful violence, his openness about his own experiences of isolation and discrimination, his professional choices. He's our superhero."
As a look back at 2022 so far, this year is marking some major historic events for Asians and Asian Americans.
We need much more progress of course, but these achievements...
October 12, 2022
By Suzanne Joe Kai
2022 is year of great firsts for Asian Americans in Hollywood. Veteran actor, producer and director James Hong finally has received a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame in Los Angeles.
Congratulations to James Hong!
Co-starring in the 2022 movie Everything Everywhere All At Once Hong has acted in 149 feature films, 32 short films and 22 video games spanning nearly seven decades!
The ceremony on May 10, 2022 was joined by actor Daniel Dae Kim who raised funds to pay for Hong's star in four days in 2020.
Hong was also joined by Everything Everywhere All At Once co-star Jamie Lee Curtis.
At age 93, Hong becomes the oldest person to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame.
Daniel Dae Kim said Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are less than 1% of the names on the Walk Of Fame. Hong's name joins Anna May Wong, Mako, Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan and Lucy Liu.
On the crowdfunding page, Daniel Dae Kim writes that Hong "epitomizes the term "working actor" and that's not even taking into account all he's done to help further representation for actors of color."
We still have a long road ahead to create parity in diversity, equity and inclusion. This is a good step forward.
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