This is my first year helping to organize the Ithaca Pan Asian American Film Festival, but I have been a participant since the very first IPAAFF, almost three years ago.
Back then, I remember some of my friends and classmates talking about a new film festival on campus called the Ithaca Pan Asian American Film Festival. They were so passionate and enthusiastic that I wanted to be on the team that organized the festival for the following year.
Before I knew it, the following year came and I found myself drawn into two other film festivals: the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival (FLEFF) and the Cannes International Film Festival. For FLEFF, I was a blogging intern. For Cannes, I was a ticket distribution intern for the American Pavilion. Sadly, I couldn’t help with IPAAFF because I had to take my finals early to be at Cannes.
So…third time’s a charm, right?
After interning at two vastly different film festivals — FLEFF, which focuses on a certain environmental topic, and Cannes, a commercial festival — IPAAFF aims to make the invisible minority visible by providing a space and creating a dialogue. IPAAFF sheds light on the achievements, issues and representation of the Asian American community.
From IPAAFF, I hope to gain a greater perspective and knowledge facing the Asian American community through the media that they create and produce. In my opinion, the best way to learn more about a particular group, a topic, or even an individual, is to observe, engage and support.
Film festivals are meant to exhibit and facilitate new perspectives — even if these perspectives make you uncomfortable. The greatest thing one can do, in order to grow as a person, is to try new things.
After seeing the immense amount of enthusiasm and hard work over the years by my fellow peers for IPPAAF, it has inspired me to try something new and become an organizer for the third annual IPPAAF.
Hope to see you soon.