Mar 25, 2009

New York Premiere This Friday 3/27

New York Premiere of A Song For Ourselves Friday, March 27th at 7pm Manhattan Country School 7 East 96th Street (Between Madison & 5th Ave.) New York, NY 10128
(tickets sold out) Photobucket i'm really excited about this weeks new york premiere.  not only is it the first screening in chris iijima's hometown, but its also happening at place that meant a lot to chris and his family, manhattan country school.  m.c.s. where chris spent many years (1975-85) as a teacher, the place where he met his wife jane (who was also a teacher at the school) and where his sister lynne currently works. here's chris with his 6th grade class at m.c.s. back in '82 Photobucket akemi kochiyama (front row, middle) now works for m.c.s and is one of the main organizers of the friday's event!
all proceeds of the screening will go to the chris iijima fund, an endowment fund to support the unique sliding scale tuition policy that makes m.c.s. accessible to more students.  

Mar 24, 2009

Asian Pacific Arts Video and Article on LA Premiere

asian pacific arts recently posted an article and video of the some of the highlights of last months LA premiere of song.  read and watch them here.  big ups to liann, ada, warren, and the rest of the apa staff for covering the event!
why does this photo look like geo, bam, kiwi and phat are starring in a filipino re-make of barbershop?
speaking of barbershop scenes...

Mar 23, 2009

Bay Area Premiere at SFIAAFF

last week song had its yay area premiere at the san francisco international asian american film festival.  i went up for the fest and had one of the best festival experiences ever!   i made it up to the city just in time to hit the opening night "gala" where ellen from caam somehow talked me into doing a short interview.  sarah started off the interview by doing the robot while holding the biggest gotdamn microphone in all of sf: Photobucket
"production manager" roger, at least that's what his badge said, enjoyed the wine and cheese:
the best part of caam's festival is that people from all over the country come out for it.  i got a chance to build with folks like corrine (ny), heather (tee dot), and kevin (hawai'i) all in one bar:
corrine (front left) screened her documentary short excuse my gangsta ways.  watch the trailer and interview with corrine here.
my good friend aram (in the blue jays hat) came from toronto to screen his latest film the others, which was one of the best shorts i saw at the festival.  after the screening we went to an after-prom like hotel party where musician goh nakamura (far right) and friends performed.Photobucket
why am i always stuck with the filipinos?  reppin' the better half of the state; aj (xylophone films), patricio (kid heroes), abe (vc film fest) and julius:Photobucket
aj, pat and julius screened their music video for "crooks and rooks" by bambu.
many of chris iijima's friends threw a very nice reception for the film the night before the screening.Photobucket
the renown film scholar and my old professor b.ruby rich: Photobucket
the infamous spencer nakasako, award-winning filmmaker, teacher and my mentor.  be on the lookout for an official shit-talking session with me and spence at the upcoming la asian pacific film fest, no seriously.Photobucket

Mar 3, 2009

Song Gets Write-Up In LA Times!

Photobucket robert ito wrote a really nice article on song that ran in the la times on saturday.
"The film is at turns celebratory and wistful, a paean to Iijima and the L.A. that, despite its rap as a town without a center or a sense of community, nurtured the artist like no other."
read article here
i sat down with robert a couple of weeks ago. being japanese american himself, he really understood the history and significance of the asian american movement and the relevance of chris iijima's story. another reminder why we need more people from our respective communities with access to mainstream media outlets like the times.