Film has been described as a medium of truth, so I believe it should reflect what and who we see in real life. Representation for all cultures and communities is important to me because that is my truth; it is what I see on a daily basis – they are my peers, my friends, my family. I believe all voices should be heard and that it is incredibly important for people to see themselves in major media. This festival allows for voices to be heard, it allows Asian Americans to tell their own stories and celebrates that expression.
I am glad to take part in a festival that allows me to show my solidarity and help those voices be heard. This festival will expose me to many aspects of the Asian American identity that I had previously been unaware of or had not properly considered. This festival may help young Asian American filmmakers get their start in filmmaking which will help to enrichen the medium with new ideas and perspectives. I’m excited to begin work with this community and to help move the industry away from its past failings of misrepresentation as we recognize an important community that helps make up our country.
I am also excited to work with and get to know the other festival organizers as we work collaboratively to put together a great festival. We will get the chance to learn and grow together as we work through this process and gain new experiences through this festival. I hope to form new connections and learn new skills. Ithaca’s Pan Asian American Film Festival offers an opportunity for me to further my own understanding and knowledge of filmmaking and representation and allows me to give back to my community and enables more voices to be heard and recognized in film.