Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival

Narrative Program: Lost in Apocalypse

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

East Coast Premiere Director: Sky Wang 90 mins | Drama, Horror, Action, Thriller | China | Chinese Mystery unfolds as a group of individuals are confronted by undead forces outside of an abandoned factory but then go about their business as usual the next day. An unexplained virus suddenly breaks out and turns people into …

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Live Performance The DJZ

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

12-5pm | Asian Arts Initiative Lead Artists: Aizhanneya Carter and Claris Park Welcome to the Department of Judgement Zoning. We invite you to navigate the bizarrely familiar world of The Department of Judgement Zoning where identity rules and bureaucracy is not as mundane as it seems… Efficiency is valued at the DJZ, so please make …

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Documentary Program—Revolution Selfie: The Red Battalion

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

East Coast Premiere Director: Steven de Castro 120 mins | Documentary | Philippines | English Revolution Selfie expands the horizons of documentary storytelling while broadening our understanding about the lesser-known fronts in the global “War on Terror.” Filmmaker Steven De Castro paints a portrait of the 48-year-old Maoist guerilla army in the Philippine hinterlands. But …

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Ritoma

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

Get Tickets Things are changing on the Tibetan Plateau. With diminishing grasslands, falling livestock prices, smaller families, and a rise in the number of children going to school, the nomads are finding it increasingly hard to continue their traditional way of life. Many are leaving the grasslands, struggling at this time of transition to keep …

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Shorts Program—Iran Hyphenated: Short Films of the Iranian Diaspora

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

Curators: Sara Zia Ebrahimi & Lila Yomtoob Asian Arts Initiative | 64 mins Having a hyphenated identity is more than just being between worlds and fixed identities. It includes the active process of forging a new cultural space—a cultural remix. It is often the work of the first generation after a significant migration to begin …

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Documentary Program: Leitis in Waiting

East Coast Premiere Director: Dean Hamer, Joe Wilson, and Kumu Hina Wong-Kalu 70 mins | Documentary | Tonga | English Leitis in Waiting is the story of Joey Mataele and the Tonga Leitis, an intrepid group of native transgender women fighting a rising tide of religious fundamentalism and intolerance in their South Pacific Kingdom. The …

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Documentary Program: Yassa Daruman

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

US premiere Director: Kenichi Omori 91 mins | Documentary | Japan | Japanese As part of the celebrations to commemorate the 450th anniversary of Mihara Castle’s construction, the youth from the Yassa Daruman neighborhood have undertaken a glorious project: to spread the popularity of Yassa Daruman, Mihara City’s official mascot, around the country. Inspired by …

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Narrative Program: Flower Drum Song

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

Director: Henry Koster 133 min | Musical, Comedy, Romance | USA | English In this adaptation of the 1958 Rodgers and Hammerstein Broadway musical, Chinese immigrant Mei Li (Miyoshi Umeki) is betrothed to nightclub boss Sammy Fong (Jack Soo), but he wants to marry showgirl Linda Low (Nancy Kwan). To get out of the arrangement, …

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Documentary Program: In Search of a Nation

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

Director: Prakash Angdembe 105 mins | Documentary | Bhutan, India, Nepal  | Nepali Desh Khojdai Janda’s film documents the more than 120,000 forgotten Nepali-speaking Bhutanese citizens from Bhutan who spent two decades in refugee camps (some of whom are still living there) in Jhapa and Morang, Nepal. Their years of repatriation struggle to their homeland …

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Documentary Program: Origin Story

East Coast Premiere Director: Kulap Vilaysack 106 mins | Documentary | Laos | English, Lao In her directorial debut, actor/writer/podcaster Kulap Vilaysack explores her tangled family tree to find out who she is. When Vilaysack was 14, she took her father’s side in an argument and her mother replied, “Why are you defending him? He’s …

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Documentary Program: Corridor Four

Asian Arts Initiative 1219 Vine St, Philadelphia, PA

Director: Stephen Tringali 81 mins | Documentary | USA | English Get Tickets The image of the American hero is challenged in this heartfelt portrait of 9/11 Pentagon first-responder Isaac Ho’opi’i. A nationally recognized K9 Unit Officer, Isaac Ho’opi’i was responsible for saving numerous people from the Pentagon during the terrorist attacks on September 11, …

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PAAFF Film Club – Chan is Missing

Online/Virtual

Join us for the inaugural meeting of our new PAAFF Film Club. We'll be discussing Wayne Wang’s feature debut Chan is Missing (1982).