The San Diego Asian Film Festival celebrates its sixth year at the UltraStar Mission Valley at Hazard Center (formerly Mann Theatres), September 29 – October 6. The festival promises to be a bigger and better experience with more than 130 short and feature films from the U.S., Canada, Thailand, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, China, Singapore, Taiwan and the Philippines. The San Diego Asian Film Foundation (SDAFF) has added four more days to the festival to accommodate its growing audience. Most programs will be shown at the UltraStar Mission Valley at Hazard Center, though there will be another venue for films, panels and workshops next door at the Brickstone Salon at the Doubletree Hotel in Mission Valley.
The festival opens with the South Korean blockbuster MARATHON – based on a true story about a young, autistic man whose one pleasure in life is running, and closes with Lane Nishikawa’s landmark film, ONLY THE BRAVE – the first narrative feature about the Japanese-American 442nd Regimental Combat Team. Other features include the award-winning film, CAVITE, directed and produced by San Diego natives Ian Gamazon and Neill dela Llana, and two Sundance films – Alice Wu’s SAVING FACE and THE MOTEL by Michael Kang. The festival also features many women filmmakers, who make up more than half of this year’s programming. Plus, patrons can enjoy a diverse collection of short films including a multicultural Latino/Asian American program co-sponsored by San Diego Latino Film Festival.
Along with films, the festival offers workshops, panels, competitions, and a chance for the public to meet more than 100 filmmakers, actors, and industry guests. The festival’s top films will be awarded during a star-studded Gala Awards Ceremony on Friday, September 30 at the Doubletree Hotel in Mission Valley. Actress Joan Chen (The Last Emperor, Twin Peaks, Saving Face) will be presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award, and filmmaker Alice Wu will be presented with a Visionary Award for her film, SAVING FACE. Other VIPs scheduled to attend include Dustin Nguyen (21 Jump Street, V.I.P) and Roger Fan (Better Luck Tomorrow, Annapolis). Daniel Dae Kim and Yunjin Kim of ABC’s Lost are also invited to attend.
“There will be something for everyone at this year’s festival,” says SDAFF executive director, Lee Ann Kim. “From action and comedy to drama and compelling documentaries, I’m extremely proud of the crop of films we’ve selected. Plus the audience gets the added bonus of meeting more than 100 filmmakers and artists in person.”
For more info, visit the San Diego Asian Film Festival website.