The 2017 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival will take place this year between April 27th and May 4th. Locations include Koreatown, Little Tokyo, and Westwood. On May 5, Buena Park will host encore-presentation screenings.
The eight day festival will showcase 184 films (45 features, 139 shorts) from 31 countries and host a series of panel discussions. . This year the festival will open with Justin Lin’s cut of Better Luck Tomorrow. The film was the launching pad for actor John Cho and was the somewhat-origin of Han, the beloved character from the Fast and Furious franchise. The original film premiered at Sundance in 2002, but the film was significantly trimmed by distributor MTV Films/Paramount Classics.
The festival will celebrate the 25th anniversary of Justin Chon’s Gook. The directorial debut is about the Rodney King verdict and the 1992 Los Angeles riots. This is a very timely piece and makes sense to have it showcased this year.
“LAAPFF will commemorate the 25th anniversary of the L.A. uprising with a weekend of films, discussions, and art presentations, culminating with the screening of “Gook.””
The festival will screen three films starring John Cho, Better Luck Tomorrow, directed by Justin Lin; Yellow, directed by Chris Chan Lee; and Colombus, directed by Kogonada. These screenings will take place to celebrate Asian talent, but it is also due to the popularity of ‘#StarringJohnCho’. This hashtag was started to address the lack of Asian American leads in Hollywood, and as a response to the whitewashing of Asians in Hollywood.
“The fest closes with “Columbus,” the feature directorial debut of the single-named Kogonada. The filmmaker was born in Seoul, South Korea, raised in the Midwest, and now resides in Nashville. The film stars John Cho, a rare example of a movie with an Asian American male lead.”
The LAAPFF is important for the Asian and Asian American filmmaking community. It is a place to celebrate and support Asian talent. In the midst of Asian whitewashing and cultural erasure, it is important for festivals like this to exist, and to exist in Hollywood’s backyard. Expect there to many discussions at Q&A’s and panels about whitewashing.
For more information and the schedule: http://festival.vconline.org/2017/
The festival and header art was produced by Visual Communication.
The LAAPFF organizers are Francis Cullado as executive director; David Magdael as co-director; Abraham Ferrer as co-director and senior programmer; Chanel Kong as fest manager; and Milton Liu as director of C3.