Diary from Cannes 2013: Day 4
May 19, 2013: The sun came out on Sunday, and so did… every single Asian film that I wanted to see.
What I got used to very quickly as a first time Cannes attendee (with a low-priority press badge) is that every single day, I’d look through the list of hundreds of press screenings, competition screenings, and market screenings; plan my day in at least three different formations amidst much confusion and indecision; and then when I finally decided on my schedule, at least a third of it would fall through for some reason or another (screening full, interview ran late, starving and took too long to find your third £5 tomato/ham/mozzarella baguette sandwich of the day; heard someone yell “Marion Cotillard!” and found yourself zombie-walking into the paparazzi crowd instead of power walking away); and I’d end up just improvising my way through the day.
It’s what keeps the festival exciting. And normally, it’s smart to pace yourself, but Sunday’s lineup was out of control. Too many good things to see in too little time.
Diary from Cannes 2013: Day 3 (May 18, 2013)
After getting a quick glimpse of the beautiful beach weather that Cannes is known for on Friday, Saturday was full of storms and winds. But that didn’t stop crowds from lining up outside the theaters with their umbrellas to wait for today’s lineup of films. Perhaps the rain actually increased the popularity of the screenings, as festivalgoers preferred ducking in to theaters for shelter, as opposed to ducking into overpriced restaurants.
The day started promisingly with the premiere of Bends, a debut film from Hong Kong’s Flora Lau. The quiet drama starring Carina Lau as a wealthy Hong Kong socialite and Chen Kun as her mainland Chinese chauffeur with a pregnant wife was a nice surprise, but perhaps the quality of the film shouldn’t have been so surprising, because it was clearly accepted into Cannes without the boost of a known auteur at the helm.
Much to the excitement of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon fans, director Ang Lee announced his plans to produce a sequel to the internationally-acclaimed film. Released in 2000, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon was extremely well-received in the Western world gaining critical acclaim, a handful of awards, and a 97% on Rotten Tomatoes.
Lee has thus far revealed that the film will star Donnie Yen and Michelle Yeoh. He has expressed that they are working on the script adamantly and will not stop working on it until it’s improved and in excellent shape. He has also revealed that they plan to produce both an English and Mandarin version of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 2 instead of dubbing the Mandarin film. Both versions will be filmed separately to maintain originality.
Donnie Yen, who is casted in the lead role aside Michelle Yeoh, is hoping to have a breakthrough performance with his new role. We’ve waited 13 years for this sequel and we certainly hope for the best.
Keanu Reeves, who is most often recognized as Neo from The Matrix Franchise (1999-2003), began his acting career in 1991. Now 22 years later, Reeves has decided to step behind the camera for his directional debut film Man of Tai Chi. The martial arts movie was filmed in China, has Chinese dialogue, and also stars stuntman Tiger Chen (Reeves’ martial arts trainer) as the protagonist while Reeves will play the antagonist.
Reeves has received help from legendary fight choreographer Yuen Woo-Ping who choreographed Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Much excitement has been surrounding the film and we wish the best to Reeves as he begins his career in directing.
Check out the official trailer below:
Diary from Cannes 2013: Day 2
May 17, 2013: A dramatic day for Cannes today, including gunshots and a jewelry heist. An employee for the luxury jeweler Chopard found that a safe holding $1.4 million dollars worth of jewelry had been stolen from the four-star hotel room the night before. Ironically, Sofia Coppola’s The Bling Ring, about teenagers who steal possessions from celebrities, had just premiered the day before.
Later in the day, a mentally unstable man with a gun fired blanks into the air near a French television interview featuring jury members Christoph Waltz and Daniel Auteuil. Attendees fled the scene, but no one was hurt, and the man was arrested.
But the show went on, regardless. Today was the premiere of Jia Zhangke’s A Touch of Sin:
As well as the premiere of Anurag Kashyap’s Ugly. He was honored with the French honour Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters for his efforts in the promotion of Indian cinema across the globe.
It was also the premiere of Asghar Farhadi’s The Past, his much anticipated follow up to his 2011 Oscar-winning film, A Separation. This time, an Iranian man’s trip back to France to sign divorce papers causes him to get re-entangled into personal complications of his soon-to-be ex-wife, played by Bérénice Bejo (The Artist). Family drama has never kept me literally on the edge of my seat.
The night ends with a Tony Leung and Carina Lau spotting at the gala screening of Jia Zhangke’s Touch of Sin. Carina Lau stars in Hong Kong director Flora Lau’s first feature Bends, which will be premiering tomorrow as part of Un Certain Regard….
George Takei is described as one of the most interesting Angeleno’s featured in L.A. Weekly’s People 2013.At the age of 76, Star Trek actor Takei has become one of the most beloved celebrities. A glimpse in the past, however, shows us that things were not always so easy for him. Takei faced the cold slap of racism at an early age. He was only five years old during the internment of Japanese-Americans in 1942 when he and his family were driven out of their home and into an internment camp.Things were not any easier when Takei decided to pursue acting. He had to hide his sexual orientation after deciding that his race was already enough for people to discriminate.
His luck finally took a turn when he got the role of Hikaru Sulu on the original Star Trek. Takei waited until he had a strong fan base, became a pop-culture icon, and had a handful of work options before revealing his sexual orientation. Today, Takei is ”now a social media maven, a theatrical producer and, with his husband, the former Brad Altman (now Takei), a poster child for marriage equality.” After enduring so much struggle, we are glad to see Takei’s success and wish him the best.
Click on to check out the other Asians featured in L.A. Weekly People 2013:
ISSUE Spring 2013
story Hilal Nakiboglu
photo Russ Elloway
After a small role in the award-winning film ARGO, the London-born Indian actress appears next in a film with Josh hartnett and in NBC’s highly anticipated series MISTRESSES.
Audrey Magazine: First of all, congratulations on your involvement with Argo [Sunny played the Swissair ticketing agent].
Tehmina Sunny: Thank you! It was such a wonderful experience. I’ve always admired Ben Affleck as an actor, so to be actually working with him was incredible. He’s an amazing director, very respectful and down-to- earth. He had a great team around him, too.
AM: You have a film coming out later this year, with Josh Hartnett, called Singularity. Tell us about your character.
TS: I play the antagonist, Sonubai. She’s quite ruthless and not shy about ￼￼getting what she wants, even if she hurts people in the process.
AM: Was she fun to play?
TS: Very. It’s only now that I’m playing the more ruthless characters. It’s fun. I don’t know if it’s because I’m getting tougher, but I’m being seen more for these roles, and I love it.
AM: And Josh Harnett?
TS: His process was fascinating for me to watch. He’s opened me up to new ways of thinking about how to play a character and work with material. I’m so excited about that project. It just looks so stunning: the cinematography, the costumes, and the storyline. I believe it’ll be premiering at Cannes this year.
AM: How do you get ready for an event like Cannes?
TS: I stick to what works for me. I try to do yoga three or four times a week. Sometimes Pilates. A little bit of weights, but not too much. I love my cardio. I love spinning. I like running, because it puts me back in my own world, which I need sometimes.
AM: In her book, Mindy Kaling says that as she runs, her mind generates these detailed revenge fantasies. Does yours do that, too?
TS: [Laughs] Not quite. Running clears my mind. If I’m feeling anxious or even afraid of something, I’ll run, and it makes me better.
AM: What are you watching on TV right now?
TS: Everything. Homeland. I’m an avid Good Wife fan. I enjoy How I Met your Mother and Modern Family. I have eclectic taste.
AM: The Good Wife stars fellow British Asian actress, Archie Panjabi. Do you two hang out?
TS: She’s based in New York, so not really. But I did meet her at an Emmy party. When I was younger, I saw her in a film called East is East, and since then, I’ve followed her career. It was really nice touching base with her. She was very friendly and asked me, “How are you finding it here? How do you find the process?” And I was saying that four years ago, when I started, there was nothing. The calls that went out were very, very specific. Now, there seems to be more diversity and different roles within projects that I can be seen for. It’s great that the doors are opening.
AM: And what role would you like to see open up for you next?
TS: I’m not going to lie: I’d love to be the next Bond girl.
Sadly, the 29th Edition of the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival will be soon coming to a close (they finish out the festival this weekend in Long Beach), wrapping up with the Closing Night film Key of Life. Various awards were handed out before the closing night film in the narrative and documentary categories. Some big winners included Lee Issac Chung (for Abigail Harm), Kalyanee Mam (for A River Changes Course) and Tadashi Nakamura (for Jake Shimabukuro: Life on Four Strings). Click on for complete list of the winners!
Audrey Magazine: Can you tell us a bit about this film and then about your character specifically?
Harry Shum Jr : White Frog is about a suburban family who looks perfect on the outside, but isn’t perfect on the inside. They’re struck with this tragic death that rocks the whole family. Nick Young, who is played by BooBoo Stewart, suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome and has to try and piece things together that will hopefully bring the family back together. I play Chaz Young- the older brother of Nick and he’s basically the glue of the family. He’s kinda the perfect, athletic, older brother that seems to have it all together, but really he’s hiding something from his family that changes their lives forever.
Its a film about family, love, and friendship and how we need that to hold it together and deal with everything in life.
You may know 16-year-old Hailee Steinfeld for her Academy Award nominated performance as Mattie Ross in the 2010 film True Grit. Now, the part-Filipina actress plays Petra Arkanian in the Action-Adventure Sci-Fi film Ender’s Game.
Based on the best-selling novel “Ender’s Game”, the film focuses on the near future where humans are at war against an alien race called Formics. To prepare for the next invasion, the International Military trains young minds in search of a new leader. They come across Ender- a brilliant and gifted child and train him to lead his fellow soldiers into the battle that determines the future of mankind.
Check out the trailer below:
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