San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
You are cordially invited to join the Asian American Film Lab ("Film Lab") and screenwriter James J. Huang for a side-splitting reading of the new romantic comedy, "Marriage Made in Hell," a supernatural comedy in which a carefree slacker thinks he's found the perfect fake wife to foil his marriage minded mother's plans -- until his bride's spirit comes back from the underworld to prove she's DEAD wrong for him. The screenplay is one of Amazon Studios most popular projects, ranking between 16th and 24th out of over 2,000 comedy projects and #2 on their Premise Wars board.
The Film Lab's Actor Directory members will be performing the comedy for your enjoyment under the direction of 72 Hour Hour Shootout competitor Eddie Shieh at a reading on November 21 at 7:00pm in Manhattan. Lorna Nowve, the coordinator of the Film Lab's Unfinished Works program will then moderate a constructive Q&A and feedback session which provides the audience with an opportunity to participate in the creative process and interact directly with screenwriter James J. Huang, director Eddie Shieh and the cast members of the reading!
The screenplay, centered on US-born Asian American protagonists, promotes a positive image of multi-ethnic and diverse Americans in non-stereotypical roles designed for mass audiences.
Special thanks to TIFFIN wines, who will be providing refreshments for the event.
**There are two ticket options - the first is a donate what you can (VIP) ticket through which you can donate any amount starting at just $1 to help the Film Lab support diversity initiatives and to continue to offer free/low cost events like this. The second is our starving artist option for those who truly don't have funds and need a free ticket. Please note that free tickets do not include beverages or food and are standing room only.**
About James J. Huang
James J. Huang is a New York City born and bred Asian American writer. He strongly believes that writing comedy for mass audiences is one of the best and most effective mediums to promote more balanced portrayals of Asian Americans. His romantic comedy "Marriage Made in Hell" features U.S. born Asian American protagonists and was a semi-finalist at the 2013 Austin Film Festival and honorable mention at the 2013 Asian American International Film Festival. James is a licensed pharmacist currently practicing at Cardon's Children Medical Center in Mesa, Arizona.
About the Asian American Film Lab
The Asian American Film Lab (Film Lab) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to the promotion and support of gender and ethnic diversity in film and television through free monthly educational and outreach programming and the acclaimed annual 72 Hour Shootout filmmaking competition (www.asianamericanfilmlab.org). This annual competition has inspired hundreds of filmmakers by helping nascent talent take brave steps towards a filmmaking career. The Film Lab was formed in 1998 by collaborative of New York-based filmmakers whose goals were to hone their craft and to share their knowledge, experience and resources. The membership has grown to comprise professionals, artists and other talented individuals who all share the common goal of creating great film and promoting all filmmakers of color, with a focus on Asian Americans, and the visibility of their stories and characters in film and television.
The Film Lab is run under the direction of President Jennifer Betit Yen. The Unfinished Works program is coordinated through Lorna Nowve. Acting and Advisory Board members include Aaron Woolfolk, Eric Lin, Bea Soong, John Woo, Erik Lu, and James Kyson.
The Film Lab is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Membership and all contributions are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
About "Unfinished Works"
The Film Lab's Unfinished Works program constitutes its longest running program, ongoing for 15 consecutive years. Unfinished Works allows writers to workshop, in a structured and constructive environment, unfinished plays, screenplays and television scripts. It also serves as a bridge between actors, writers and directors of color, particularly Asian Americans. To submit your screenplay for a free reading and workshop, please email Lorna Nowve at UnfinishedWorks@film-lab.org with your name, email, telephone number, logline, synopsis, and a brief statement of why you feel Unfinished Works will be useful to developing and improving your screenplay.
About Eddie Shieh
Eddie Shieh is a writer-director, sometimes producer, and a sold screenwriting member of the Writer's Guild of America East and WGA Digital Caucus. Eddie has competed in the Asian American Film lab's famous 72 Hour Shootout filmmaking competition, an annual competition deisgned to promote ethnic and gender diversity in film, several times. His 2011 short, "Tu & Eu (You & Me)," starring Daniela Ruah (CBS/NCIS:LA) and Ato Essandoh (BBC/Copper, Django Unchained, Garden State), is a 10x Finalist also with wins for Best Direction, Ensemble Cast, and several nominations for Best Actor, Actress, and Music from Academy® Qualifying and international festivals. His recent film, "Mr. Chavan," was a 2013 72 Hour Shootout Finalist, now adapted for upcoming festivals. All his completed works have garnered numerous accolades and been signed to distribution internationally. He has also worked with Pulitzer-Nominated, Richard Vetere, and acclaimed playwrights Jonathan Marc Sherman, Neena Beber, Daniel Reitz, Ellen Melaver. In 2008, Eddie created the Red Rope Playhouse in partnership with New York Magazine presenting short plays called, "Ex-Lovers," by Israel Horowitz and his NY Playwrights Lab. Featured at the Off-Broadway Westside Theatre, he co-directed Tony-nominated actors, Jessica Hecht and Marin Ireland, and other acting veterans. (Getty: http://bit.ly/1brEehg, NotesOnAParty: http://bit.ly/1hzqU7R). Eddie's passion stems from an award-winning career creating advertising campaigns for worldwide brands including IBM, GAP, P&G, Heineken, Pepsi, and he is currently engaged in The Barrow Group Director's Workshop under esteemed, Seth Barrish.
About The Cast
*The majority of the cast is made up of talented actors from the Film Lab's Actor Directory (http://www.asianamericanfilmlab.com/actor-directory1/) who donate their time and talent in order to support and promote gender and ethnic diversity in film and television:
Kevin Kreider (Xander Lau)*
Commercials: Gillette, Reese's, Reebok, Cadillac, Toshiba, Cute Press, V-Slim, Nivea for Women
Jim Chu (Zhong Kui)*
SAG-AFTRA. Film: Almost Perfect (2011) TV: Fortune Sun (2013), Theater: Five Chinese Brothers (writer and actor).
Jinn Kim (Ian Eng)*
SAG-AFTRA. Films: Undying, Mattie Fresno & the Holoflux Universe, Hurricane Streets, Gravesend, Solstice, Still. TV: How to Make It in America, Hate, Law&Order: Criminal Intent, OZ. Theater: Rise and Fall of a Teenage Cyberqueen, disOriented, Cynthia and the Dreadful Kite, Patsy Stufflebean, Shoe Story, Crazy Little Thing, In Search of a Goddess, The Fairy Tale Project, A Winter Party, Small Potatoes, Dreaming Tongues, In Race Religion & Politics, Queen Latina, Translations. Awards: Best Actor for Wasserman Award, Nominated for NYIT Awards Best Ensemble, Best Premiere Production
Stan Vidal (Announcer, Will, Guard, Zack, Dr. Barclay)*
Films: Happy Five Years, Ugly Me, Sky Paradise, Keep The Change, A Week,Yellow Fever, AAFL's Happy Family. Theater: Secrets, Love. Internet: Stereo-Types.
Jason Schuchman (Thesis Advisor, Fred, Tom, Bernie, Punk Leader, Scott)
SAG-AFTRA. OFF-BROADWAY: Milton Bradley, Ensemble Studio Theatre; Never Tell, Broken Watch Theatre Company; The Roads That Lead Here, Epic Repertory Theatre Company. SELECTED REGIONAL: My Name is Asher Lev, Lyric Stage Company of Boston; Travels of Angelica, Cincinnati Playhouse, Intimate Apparel, Stamford Theatre Works; Mrs. Farnsworth, Rep Stage; Modern Orthodox, Caldwell Theatre; Yankee Doodle Dandy!, 5th Avenue Theatre; Lobby Hero, Studio Theatre in Washington D.C. and Lyric Stage Company of Boston; Dead End, Huntington Theatre; Meshugah, Boston Theatre Works, and many others. TELEVISION: Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU, Third Watch and Guiding Light. FILM: Award-winning Tu & Eu (You & Me) written and directed by Eddie Shieh. ALSO: Mr. Schuchman is a member of Emerging Artists Theatre and an actor member of Israel Horovitz’s New York Playwrights Lab.
Jon Okabayashi (The Oracle/Governor)*
SAG-AFTRA. Film: Customer Service (2013), You Fit The Description, Venus & Lola. New Media: The Buddy System (recurring). Theater: The ABC's of Getting Famous (Interviewee, Spookfish Theater Co.), Hobo Nono (St. Ann's Warehouse), Fire Island (3 Legged Dog), The Record (600 Highwaymen), Largo Desolato (The Ohio Theatre), Under The Sign of the Hourglass (Ontological-Hysteric), The Balcony (Access Theater).
Jennifer Betit Yen (Stacy Eng)*
SAG-AFTRA. Film: The Martini (2013 Asian American Film Lab 72 Hour Shootout), DaZE (2013), The Problem of Gravity (2012), The Delivery (2008), Interrogation (2006). TV: Reading Rainbow, Dirt (FX), La La Land (CKF), America’s Most Wanted (FOX), My Not So subConscious (AAFL TV). Theater: Suddenly Last Summer (Catherine), DHHWI New Works Festival at East West Players (Yut Ho), The Paper Dragon (Bot), Much Ado About Nothing (Hero), As You Like It (Celia). Video/Voiceover: Audible, Random House, Need for Speed II: Special Edition. Awards: Accolade Award, Best Television Pilot (lead actress, La La Land). Newscasting and Hosting: Toastmasters, WVBR-FM, Cisco, Project Success.
Kathleen Kwan (Grace Lau)
SAG-AFTRA. Films: Children of Invention (Dir, Tze Chun), Solar Vengeance (Pandora Machine). TV: Elevator Weekend (Solar Films). Theatre: New York: Joy Luck Club (Pan Asian Rep), The Gentleman Dancing- Master (u/s , Pearl Theatre), The Master Builder (u/s, Pearl Theatre), The Flight of the White Bird (LaMama), The House of Bernarda Alba (Manhattan Theatre Source) Other Theatre: Oleanna, Measure for Measure, Working, Strider
Ava Lee (Zoe/Gina/Fan/Diane/Rebecca)*
Films: Siblings, placed 13th in 2013 Asian American Film Lab 72-hour Shootout. TV: Forbidden - Prince of Darkness episode (on the Investigation Discovery channel). Theater: Following Sarah (Baltimore Playwrights Festival), Every Night I Die (2011 Capital Fringe Festival), various college productions. Awards: Following Sarah won Best Production and Best Play in the 2012 Baltimore Playwrights Festival.
Jennifer Silverman (Nicole Levy-Eng)
SAG-AFTRA. Theatre: “Jan” in the play Fifty Words by Michael Weller at the 45th Street Theater in New York (co-producer); Fear and Desire at The Drilling Company, Women of Manhattan at Vancouver Little Theater and Faking Life at the Vancouver Fringe Festival. Training: Larry Moss, and acting graduate of The Neighborhood Playhouse School.
Wai Ching Ho (Grandma/Amy the Hungry Ghost)
SAG-AFTRA. Films: Listen Up Philip, Affluenza, Sweatshop Kid, Half of Her, Premium Rush, Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Adventures of Power, Resolve, Robot Stories, Tracers. TV: Compulsive Love, Flight of the Conchords, Law and Order, Law and Order (Criminal Intent), Law and Order (SVU), One Life To Live. Theatre, NY: No Foreigners Beyond This Point, The Joy Luck Club, Carry The Tiger to The Mountain, The Legacy Codes, Eating Chicken Feet, Rosa Loses Her Face, The Square, Ah, Wilderness. Regional: Denver Center Theatre : The Catch, Long Wharf Theatre: The Joy Luck Club, Palo Alto Theatre Works: The Legacy Codes. Awards: Best actress awards in 2003 for Robot Stories in Puchon, Madrid and St. Louis independent festivals.
Katherine Kine (Secretary, Jennifer, Shannon, Lexa, Mrs. Barclay, Anime Fan)*
SAG-AFTRA. Film: Happy Family. TV: One Life to Live (Capricorn Nightclub waitress). Theatre: Grease (Marty) Girl Gone (Carla) Jesus Christ Superstar (Chorus member). Commercials: AT&T, Enterprise Rental Car, Elsevier Books.
Stephen Lin (Narrator)*
SAG-AFTRA. Films: A Bear Lands on Earth, Sleepwalk With Me, Chinese Puzzle/Casse-tête chinois, The Fox and The Grapes, *A Guy Named Rick, *Tall Enough Ponies, *Benachin**Keep a Smile, Zhijun, Killer Headline.
When & Where
The Film Lab
The Film Lab is a 501c3 non profit dedicated to the promotion and support of gender and ethnic diversity through (1) education; (2) outreach and support and (3) a production arm (AAFL TV). The Film Lab offers monthly programs, all of which are open to the public, ranging from performances to educational seminars to screenings to filmmaking competitions.
The Film Lab's television series, Film Lab Presents, airs on CrossingsTV (Time Warner Cable, Xfinity, etc.), on MNN and Live! and on AAFL TV online. Subscribe for free to the youtube channel at www.youtube.com/asamfilmlab for bold, innovative and deliciously diverse entertainment.
The Film Lab is run under the direction of President Jennifer Betit Yen. Board members include Aaron Woolfolk, James Kyson, and Daryl King as Secretary and Chloe Jenkins as Treasurer. The management team includes Kirtland Washington and Youn Jung Kim (Production Arm); and Daryl King, Chloe Jenkins and Josephine Dongbang (Connections and Social Media).
The Film Lab began in 1998 as a collaborative of New York-based Asian American filmmakers whose goals were to hone their craft and to share their knowledge, experience and resources. The membership has since grown to comprise professionals, artists and other talented individuals of all ethnic backgrounds, who all share the common goal of creating great film and promoting Asian American filmmakers and other filmmakers of color, and the visibility of their stories and characters in film and television. The Lab now runs monthly programs to promote gender and ethnic diversity in film and television, the annual 72 Hour Film Shootout filmmaking competition, in conjunction with Asian CineVision and the Asian American International Film Festival, the Asians on Film Festival in Hollywood, and the New York Indian Film Festival. The Film Lab launched its own production arm in August of 2013 to create and share diverse stories showing the multi-cultural and cosmopolitan face of US society today. The Production Arm’s goal is to show the United States as it truly is – diverse and cosmopolitan, through multi-ethnic and multi-cultural viewpoints and stories. The Asian American Film Lab is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.
The Film Lab’s programming includes filmmaking workshops with industry professionals, screenwriting contests, and film competitions, including the annual 72 Hour Film Shootout (the “Shootout”). Our departments break down into (1) Unfinished Works; (2) Industry Spotlight; (3) Connections, which includes the 72 Hour Shootout filmmaking competition; and (4) the Film Lab Production Arm, AAFL TV.
(1) Unfinished Works
The Film Lab's Unfinished Works program constitutes its longest running program, ongoing for 15 consecutive years. Unfinished Works allows writers to workshop, in a structured and constructive environment, unfinished plays, screenplays and television scripts. It also serves as a bridge between actors, writers and directors of color, particularly Asian Americans. Writers are welcome to bring in a director for the table read and absolutely must cast a certain number of roles from the Asian American Film Lab’s actor members. To submit a screenplay for a free reading and workshop, writers need only email UnfinishedWorks@film-lab.org with their name, email, telephone number, logline, synopsis, and a brief statement of why they feel Unfinished Works will be useful to developing and improving their screenplay.
Also under the umbrella of our Unfinished Works Department, we are putting together an online Actor Directory for actors of all colors, which casting directors can search by gender, age range, type, languages spoken, and more. We aim to encourage casting of multi-racial actors in all contemporary American films and television shows.
(2) Industry Spotlight
The Film Lab's Industry Spotlight program features industry professionals who wish to promote and encourage diversity in film and television and includes filmmaking how-to seminars on everything from cinematography to sound, casting workshops, film screenings, and more. Sample events have included (1) a seminar with victim advocate, Maneesha Kelkar, on how to use film as a vehicle for social change, (2) a filmmaking how-to seminar presented by J.P. Chan; (3) a production workshop presented by the staff of the Descendant Films Production Company; (4) a cinematography lecture and Q&A with Eric Lin; (5) a free casting workshop with casting director Caitlin Jones of Liz Lewis Casting for actors of color; (6) A panel on online strategy for creative including Michael Nixon, Al Thompson of ValDean Entertainment, Shaun Sato of Dayside Productions, and Jeremy Readlead, an actor and writer for MTV and the Cartoon Network.
(3) Connections and the 72 Hour Shootout
Connections includes social networking events, such as our annual Holiday Gala, as well as the now well-known 72 Hour Shootout (“Shootout”). This annual competition, now in its ninth year, has inspired hundreds of filmmakers by helping nascent talent take brave steps towards a filmmaking career. 2015 marked the 11th year Asian CineVision partnered with the Film Lab to promote the Shootout at the annual Asian American International Film Festival (“AAIFF”). AAIFF is New York’s leading festival for independent Asian and Asian American film and video, and the first and longest-running U.S. festival of its kind. The top ten Shootout films also screen at the Asians on Film Festival in Los Angeles, California and at The New York Indian Film Festival. 2013 marked the first year of formal collaboration between SAG-AFTRA and the Film Lab in which SAG-AFTRA waived requirements for advance paperwork and filing for Shootout competitors, allowing SAG actors to freely participate in the Shootout.
As an integral part of AAIFF, the Shootout celebrates the creativity and genius of the directors, their casts and crews as they share stories by, about and for Asian Americans and other filmmakers of color with the world. AAIFF has played a vital role in discovering and nurturing such acclaimed talent as Wayne Wang (THE JOY LUCK CLUB), Ang Lee (CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON, BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN), Mira Nair (THE NAMESAKE), Zhang Yimou (HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS), Christine Choy (WHO KILLED VINCENT CHIN?), Steven Okazaki (THE MUSHROOM CLUB), Jessica Yu (PING PONG PLAYA), and Justin Lin (FAST FIVE).
(4) The New Film Lab Production Arm
In August 2013, the Film Lab launched a new production arm to create and promote diverse, original content. Four pilots were green lit, with filming on the first beginning August 12, 2013. The goal of the Production Arm is to create and share diverse stories showing the multi-cultural and cosmopolitan face of US society today. The Production Arm’s mission is to show the United States as it truly is – diverse and cosmopolitan, through multi-ethnic and multi-cultural viewpoints and stories. Beginning in March 2014, the Film Lab began airing the televised series "Film Lab Presents," hosted by Jennifer Betit Yen, on NYCLife, which continued for three seasons and then moved to air on CrossingsTV and other networks.