Hey, San Diego film fans! It's time for one of the best events of the year! Pacific Arts Movement presents the 16th Annual San Diego Asian Film Festival -- the largest showcase of Asian cinema on the West Coast, with ten packed days of more than 130 films and program from 20 countries. The festival runs November 5-14, with things kicking off this Thursday with the Opening Night Presentation of Miss India America.
Take a look at the festival trailer:
Here are some of this year's festival highlights:
Opening Night Film: MISS INDIA AMERICA
San Diego Premiere - Nov. 5, 7:00 PM, MCASD
Lily is a college-bound valedictorian with a gilded future, so beauty pageants are way below her. But when a case of sass strikes, she finds out what she's not above: some good ol' fashioned competition. Thanks to a wily script and Tiya Sircar's knockout comedic performance, nobody is safe from Lily's schemes.
Director Ravi Kapoor, cast and crew scheduled to attend
Centerpiece Film: SEOUL SEARCHING
San Diego Premiere - Nov. 8, 6:00 PM, UltraStar
Don't you forget about 1986, when the Latin Lover collided with the punk and the pastor's daughter on a Seoul summer camp for overseas Korean youth to discover their roots. And by roots, we mean soju, laughs, and that weird science of young love.
Director Benson Lee, cast and crew scheduled to attend
Closing Night Film: MADE IN JAPAN
San Diego Premiere - Nov. 13, 7:00 PM, MCASD
Howdy neighbors! So says Tomi Fujiyama to her friends in the U.S. who are about to discover just what kind of neighbor she is. With cowboy hat and guitar, she's determined to re-take the Grand Ole Opry stage, where in 1964, she became the country music institution's first Japanese star.
Film subject Tomi Tujiyama schedule to attend
DIGITAL PIONEER - BUZZFEED
Nov. 6, 5:00 PM, UCSD Atkinson Hall Auditorium
The website BuzzFeed has become not only one of the most formidable presences on the internet, but also one of the most significant platforms for Asian American artists. We welcome BuzzFeed producer and performer Eugene Lee Yang and other members of the BuzzFeed team to talk about BuzzFeed Motion Pictures, changing demographics, and new opportunities for filmmakers.
Eugene Lee Yang of BuzzFeed scheduled to appear
GETTING INTIMATE WITH DR. KEN
Nov. 7, 3:10 PM, UltraStar
Join us for a probing, awkwardly intimate conversation with everyone's favorite doctor-turned-comedian Ken Jeong, star of Community, the Hangover films, and the new ABC sitcom.
Dr. Ken. Ken Jeong and co-star Suzy Nakamura scheduled to appear
West Coast Premiere - Nov. 7, 3:40 PM, UltraStar and Nov. 12, 8:15PM Ultrastar
This enchanting documentary follows the Chinese American pioneer from his art school beginnings during the Depression to his years as a production illustrator leaving indelible brushstrokes on Hollywood history.
Director Pamela Tom and Tyrus Wong scheduled to attend
GALA AWARDS NIGHT and AFTER PARTY
Nov. 7, 7:00 PM, San Diego Marriott Mission Valley
More than 600 celebrities, community and business leaders will attend as the community leaders and celebrity presenters announce film award winners. Proceeds will benefit Pac-Arts' REEL VOICES, a documentary filmmaking program for high school students in the San Diego area and other year-round programs. Scheduled to emcee: comedian Jenny Yang (stand-up comedian known for Key and Peele and BuzzFeed videos) and actor Leonardo Nam (Fast and the Furious, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants).
WORLD, US, AND WEST COAST PREMIERES OF MAJOR NEW TITLES
LOVE & PEACE (Sion Sono, Japan) (US premiere)
THE WHISPERING STAR (Sion Sono, Japan) (US premiere)
MOUNTAINS MAY DEPART (Jia Zhang-ke, China) (west coast premiere)
CEMETERY OF SPLENDOUR (Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Thailand) (west coast premiere)
REUNIFICATION (Alvin Tsang, USA) (world premiere)
THE ROYAL TAILOR (Lee Wonsuk, South Korea) (west coast premiere)
ZINNIA FLOWER (Tom Lin Shu-yu, Taiwan) (US premiere)
This is one of my favorite events of the year. The folks at Pacific Arts Movement know how to throw one hell of a party, while putting together a schedule of really entertaining thoughtful and ground-breaking programming. For further information about the San Diego Asian Film Festival, including tickets, program notes and venue details, head over to the SDAFF website.