March 27, 2008

Film stills for "Miss Chinatown"

Last week I shot the film stills for the indie film "Miss Chinatown," directed by Thomas Barnes, and produced by my old friend Kim Wang of The production and post company is Digital Art Video Inc.

Well I love movies, and I love well composed, well shot movies more than anything in the cinema experience. Some of my favorites are the old spaghetti westerns' wide panoramic shots.

I have worked with Kim in the past on the Chinese beauty pageant video (Girls with Guns). I really enjoy the slow and painful process of seeing the lighting crew set up the multiple lights to lit the scene, and the fact that those 30 to 60 minutes of setting up will only be put into perhaps a few seconds in the final film.

I have not read the script or seen the final product. I believe the story is about a girl's decision to make a sacrifice as a last resort to get to a dream that she had long held, but at what price?

Here are some still shots I took for the film:

Anxious {Actor Kay}

Confrontation {Kay and Lanna}

The seduction {Lanna and Kang}

The decision {Lanna}

Wine glass {Actor Kang}

Death of a dream {Lanna and Kang}

The showdown {Kay and Lanna}

Some behind the scene photos:

Thomas doing what directors do




Lanna taking a break while the crew were setting up a shot

Kim taking a nap just because he can

Thomas through a monitor

Thomas and Lanna

The full staff {I am in it!}:

DIRECTOR: Thomas Barnes
DP: Demian Barba
AP/hair/make up: Sylvie Yap
AP: Yimi Choi
AD: Shirley Hon
GAFFER: Boris Cifuentes
GRIP: Ethan Rosenduff
SWING/PA: Kenny Wu
STILLS: Henry Chan
SOUND: Ron Barron

ACTOR Lanna Xu
ACTOR Kai Issey
ACTOR Kang Zhang

March 22, 2008

NYC Pillow Fight 2008

I walked out of the Union Square station.

I asked a bystander, "What's with the pillows?"

"Pillow fight!" She said.

There were over 100s of people amassing, each with a pillow or two, or three, waiting for the pillow fight to begin.

I stayed and took some videos with my little point and shoot. Here's my youtube upload:

Supposedly this event was spread by word of mouth, either that or by the evil pillow industry.

March 18, 2008

Dr. Charles Lee, prisoner of conscious, groom

Excerpt from The Epoch Times, December 26, 2004,

"Charles Lee sits unmoving on a wooden stool. His heart is beating fast, his breath is short, his back is straight, and his eyes look straight ahead at the television. He is not allowed to move.

“In New York, as streets bustle with last-minute shoppers and houses are in their full luminous spectacle, Ms. Yeong-Ching Foo is alone at her desk, writing a letter to President Bush.

“Please call for the release of my fiancĂ©, Charles, a U.S. citizen,” Foo writes. “Charles is imprisoned for his non-violent appeal for human rights, abused and tortured in communist China for his beliefs. Charles has been persecuted for over 700 days.”

"According to human rights groups Falun Gong, a popular and peaceful spiritual practice, has been subjected to persecution since it was banned in China in 1999.”

“Lee, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Menlo Park, California, is a Falun Gong practitioner himself. He is also a medical doctor and a member of Amnesty International Group 466. He graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and conducted research at Massachusetts General Hospital before meeting Foo at a social gathering at Stanford.”

(full article here)

The Communist government refused Charles' request to see his mother, who was also in China, one last time; she passed away during his imprisonment.

I have known Yeong-Ching since we attended the same college in California. So it was a surprise to find her on various headlines in such a circumstance. For 3 years, I read and find Yeong-Ching traveling all over the USA and the world, giving out speeches and pleading to the people of the world.

It was not until another year on January 23rd, 2006, that Charles Lee was finally released from Communist Party's secret camp. Thanks to the efforts of the various human rights groups such as Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Friends of Falun Gong, etc, as well as the US Congress.

Upon learning their much delayed wedding I flew to the Bay Area, California, last May for their wedding.

Charles and Yeong-Ching. Standford University, while not their college, it was where they met

Father taking a nap

Pillow toss; Charles taking a break


Gifts for guests. The Chinese says "Falun Dafa is Good," and "Truthfulness, Compassion and Tolerance."

This banner was taped to Yeong-Ching's car for 3 years.

San Francisco Supervisor Chris Daily

Freedom Force International president Ed Griffin

Ed Griffin

Charles and father

"Smile," he said

Since 1999, the Communist Party of China had started persecuting the practitioners of Falun Gong. Thousands were killed in the secret death camps. Thousands more were secretly dissected, alive, for organs harvesting for export.

A detailed investigation of the organ harvest.

A wikipedia entry on the organ harvest.

Like numerous other forms of propaganda, the Communist labels the Falun Gong practitioners, as well as all critics, as “unpatriotic," or working with "anti-China western forces," and use that as excuses to further the persecution, as well as their secret campaign overseas. But the whole over sea campaign is a different topic for a different time (or if you are interested in what an ex-Communist spy have to say, you can read more here and here )

March 16, 2008

Solarbabies, baby

Things I learn after watching Solarbabies (1986)

1. in the future, when the world is destroyed, the wild desert will have smooth paved roads that leads to the only town in the next 100 miles so you can skate there on roller skates after you escape a dictatorship government who told you "there ain't nothing out there." Hah, that will teach them.

2. roller skates on smooth pavement in the wild is faster then motorcycles on pursuit.

3. it's easier to jump over a broken bridge when you have a heavy back pack, as long as you have roller skates!

4. if you found a mysterious orb out of nowhere, and now suddenly regained the ability to hear without hearing aid, it must be the power from the orb. So please do talk to it, I mean, him, or her.

5. flying orb has one major draw back: people can steal it when it's not flying.

6. if a bloody war ended in the destruction of your people, you can get back at the evil enemy by sneaking into their heavily armed base with roller skates.

7. a stick used to play dry ice hockey is more powerful then a pulse rifle.

If this is not already clear, buy roller skates, they will be very useful in a post-apocalyptic future.

March 14, 2008

Jia Pets!

I've known Jia for a long time since she lived in NY. She moved to San Francisco. I was there for a few occasions in 2007 and she wanted some photos with her babies, in Golden Gate Park of San Francisco.



March 12, 2008

Kate and Paul, December

3 West Club
Manhattan, NY

Kate and Paul are an extremely lay back couple. Awesome.

This was the last wedding of the year. But I still have one more wedding to blog. I saved it last due to the weight that it carries.





Boy meets girl