Save the date! DisOrient Asian American Film Festival will be from April 16 - 19 at the Bijou Cinema Arts on 13th and Ferry in Eugene. You can't miss it. It used to be a Funeral Home and still has that look. That causes awkwardness because so many Asians would rather not hang out and watch movies where people have held funerals. But I understand it was a theater first, then a funeral home and now a theater again. It's the only independant film theater in town and close to the UO campus which makes it easier for the students to come.
Let me peak your interest:
HP Mendoza and "Fruit Flies"
David Bowles "White on Rice"
Curtis Choy "Manilatown is in the Heart"
If you aren't excited yet, you definitely must come. I've seen each of the director's films in past DisOrient Film Festivals -- HP and "Colma the Musical" for DisOrient 2, David Bowle's "Big Dreams Little Tokyo" for DisOrient 3 and "What's Wrong with Frank Chin" DisOrient 1 and each film grabbed me. I wait in anticipation for each new film. I'll write more later but I'm very distracted with responsibilities currently -- including helping to raise money for DisOrient -- and not able to have quality time with the laptop. But I wanted to put the date out there for all you independent film fans.
DisOrient is a jewel of a film festival -- four days of great films you can only see at big film festivals, quality guests from the industry sharing with the audience, just as they do for the big festivals with one great exception. In Eugene, the theater holds about 100, and it's very intimate. You have the opportunity to talk one on one, break bread together, even build a relationship if you keep coming back. The industry people have become "family" corny as it may sound. The feedback is that they like the grassroots feel of DisOrient where it's community people from elders to little kids involved, multi racial. Our parties may not have the glitz but it's filled with people, food and starts out with the Lion Dancers and ends with awards ceremony with a Sweet Life cake at Cozmic Pizza ala '60's Eugene style. One word about the guest presenters -- the directors, filmmakers actors, producers. I remember the years of the Asian American movement where artists, writers, taiko drummers and activists traveled up and down I-5 and everytime they stopped, it became an event, a time to party and network. Many of us are still in touch with each other. I'll never forget the generosity of our movement artists and political icons. The new filmmakers of independent Asian American film have that same spirit. They dedicate their whole life to their craft, they're very true to themselves, generous spirit, they come into town and mentor the next generation and make family. I totally became hooked at DisOrient 1 and by DisOrient 3, I who hate to ask anyone for anything, went place to place and asked for and raised $18,000 in less than two months. I am amazed how transforming LOVE can be. There's a lot of Love with DisOrient.
I won't lie. It's hard to be one of the organizers. There are at least three clashing philosophies on one small committee, but the festival is worth the struggle to get along. for every one of us. Every year I've worked I've thought next year I'm just going to enjoy the festival and not volunteer, then September rolls around and . . . well, you've got to work if you want it to happen.
Filmmakers out there -- Call for Entries is happening now and the form is available on our website www.disorientfilm.org or on "withoutabox." The correct mailing address for films and forms is on "withoutabox" and should be corrected by now on the website. I need to ask Will what the address is and will post it when I find out. Early deadline for submissions is December 12 and late deadline is January 2. Spread the word! Submit your film! and Save the date!!
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