Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival



PAAFF 2015 Announces 8th Annual Festival

For Immediate Release October 1, 2015

Largest Asian American Film Festival on the East Coast (November 12-22, 2015) will present films exploring Asian identity via a contemporary lens

PHILADELPHIA, PA – The 2015 Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival presented by Comcast NBC10 Telemundo72 Comcast Spectator, is enthusiastic to announce its 8th annual festival, which will take place from November 12 to November 22, 2015. In under a decade, PAAFF has emerged as the premier Asian American film festival on the East Coast. The festival will feature over 60 films, intimate discussions with filmmakers, special programs on food, music, and culture, including featured guests spoken word artist Michelle Meyers and Peter Shinkoda (Nobu on Netflix’s Daredevil).

The centerpiece of the festival will be a special music event with producer and emcee Scott “CHOPS” Jung of Philly’s legendary Mountain Brothers, whose producing credits include Kanye West, Snoop Dogg, Lil Wayne, and Nicki Minaj. This multimedia program will explore the Asian American Hip Hop movement through music videos and live performances by artists included in the seminal compilation album, Strength in Numbers. It will also feature a Q&A with CHOPS and special guests to be announced at a later date.

The festival will open with the Philadelphia premiere of SEOUL SEARCHING, a John Hughes-esque teen comedy set in South Korea, on Thursday November 12 with director Benson Lee in person; followed by an Opening Night Reception featuring 1980s dance music and a costume contest. RIGHT FOOTED, a documentary about Filipina American Jessica Cox, who was born without arms and went on to become the first person licensed to pilot an airplane with her feet, will close the festival. Cox and her husband Patrick will be in attendance.


Members of the press are cordially invited to join us on October 22, 2015 from 6:00pm to 8:00pm for our free Preview Party at the Center for Architecture (1218 Arch Street), where we will screen trailers for each of the feature films with custom greetings by directors for the Philadelphia showings. Food and drinks will be served.


This year’s selection of films will address a range of issues from immigration policy to teen angst. There is no official theme, however the year 2015 carries with it several numerological associations, which informed some of the programming:
• The number 8 is associated luck and good fortune in Chinese numerology;
• 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, a time of rampant anti-Asian racism in which over 120,000 Japanese American families were interned in camps throughout the United States;
• 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, which took important steps to prohibit racial discrimination in voting, impacting communities of color throughout the country;
• 40 years have passed since the end of the Vietnam War, which was a direct catalyst for mass migration of Southeast Asians to the US (of which Philadelphia is a large hub).

The 8th annual festival takes place at International House (3701 Chestnut Street, University City) from November 12-15 and moves to Asian Arts Initiative (1219 Vine Street, Chinatown North) from November 20-22. There will be a Free Community Screening Series from November 16-19 at multiple venues in South Philly.

Special Programs include:
• PAAFF Eats – A food centric program section that centers around culinary arts on screen and in person.
• PAAFF Pride – A program section showcasing LGBTQ content that demonstrates our commitment to including all of members of our community.
• PAAFF Pulse – A music-based section that explores the ris¬ing numbers of APAs working in the music industry.
• Pacific Islanders Showcase presented by PBS affiliate Pacific Islanders in Communications – A collection of feature films that explore a multitude of Pacific Islander American experiences including those from Samoa, Tonga, Hawai’i, and Vanuatu.
• Community Screening Series – Remembering the End of the Vietnam War 40 Years Later – A series of free screenings at community centers in South Philadelphia.

The 2015 Festival is presented by Comcast NBC10 Telemundo72 Comcast Spectator; and made possible through the generosity of Premier Sponsor Aetna; Founding Sponsor HBO; Partner Sponsors Wells Fargo, PHLDiversity, Pennsylvania Department of Drug & Alcohol Programs, and Samuel S. Fels Fund; and Prime Sponsors PECO, Jefferson Health, Pacific Islanders in Communications, Greater Philadelphia Asian Studies Consortium, Allstate, and Hepatitis B Foundation.


The Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival (PAAFF) is the first and only event of its kind in Philadelphia, bringing in audience members from all over the region and Asian American filmmakers, actors, and leaders, from around the world. The festival also hosts numerous screenings year-round independently and in partnership with regional arts and community organizations.

PAAFF’s parent organization, Philadelphia Asian American Film & Filmmakers, is a nonprofit organization founded in 2008 to showcase films by and about Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans for the city of Philadelphia and Greater Philadelphia region. They aim to present captivating programs that engage, inspire, and connect our community both to one another and the non-Asian mainstream.

For more information about PAAFF’15 visit and follow on social media @paaff or #PAAFF15. For press screeners or to schedule interviews contact Maori Karmael Holmes at [email protected] or call (215) 313-2890.


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