“IN A NEW YORK MINUTE” will have its World Premiere at the 2019 Newport Beach Film Festival on Sunday, April 28, 2019 and a Los Angeles premiere at the 2019 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival.
As a first time female filmmaker of color, I have experienced issues both as an immigrant coming to the US for grad school and entering the male dominated story telling world of filmmaking. This film is a personal journey for me because it explores one’s identity and true self. It’s easy to lose one’s way in a busy city like New York and each of the three main characters are lost in their own way, whether it be one’s identity, being caught between two lives or a societal outcast.
Two of the main goals that I wanted the film to serve is Asian representation in front of the camera and female creatives behind the lens. The three main characters are Asian American actresses and each story has a respective Asian supporting actor. The majority of key creative roles are held by driven women in film. Both Asian actors and females filmmakers are still trying to find a creative voice in film and I hope this movie shines a light on one of the many stories we want to tell.
What is your film about?
In A New York Minute is about how we are all connected and affect one another. The film follows three strangers as they accidentally discover the solution to their problems lies in a single pregnancy test. As the story unfolds, we see how their lives cross and recross, sometimes without knowing it.
Why did you make your film?
In A New York Minute was inspired by a Chinese short story, published online. Since arriving in the US for graduate school back in 2013, I’ve met many of the characters from the short story. Some are immigrants like me while others are locals. All of them are trying to blend in in some form or another. Few are actually living the life they really want. I identified with different aspects of each character as I was also going through a period of loneliness, loss of identity and homesickness. I wanted to tell a story that reflects me. In the end, we cannot break away from our emotional ties whether it be to ourselves or someone else.
How did you choose to be a filmmaker?
From childhood through high school, I always visualized the stories I read. Also, my father works in the television industry in China so he introduced me to a lot of western films and shows at an early age. That sparked my decision to study filmmaking in college. My education mainly focused on writing screenplays and character studies. Whenever we had a chance to make films, I found working with actors the most gratifying. That influenced my focus on directing.
What advice to you have for anyone that is inspired by you?
If you have a story that you want to tell, go for it. Be open to advice and opinions but make sure that, in the end, it’s still your story and only you can tell it.
What should anyone try at least once?
Travel, whether it be for fun and adventure or education and profession. Get lost in your travels. You end up learning a lot about yourself and it is one of the best way to develop ideas . At the time, I had an option to continue my education in China, but I believe In A New York Minute would not exist if I never came to study abroad in the US.