2020 LAAPFF News
2020 LA Asian Pacific Film Festival Awards Jury Announced!
October 13, 2020
We are delighted to announce members of our 2020 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival Awards Jury, composed of distinguished members from the film and creative industries. The Festival Award Winners will be announced on Saturday, October 31, 2020. Stay tuned for more information!
NORTH AMERICAN NARRATIVE FEATURE COMPETITION
Aukai Ligairi is a Pasifika filmmaker, raised on Kānaka Maoli, Kumeyaay, Ute, and Shoshone lands. Ligairi is best known for directing and producing CLEANFLIX, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2009. He’s since worked on multiple award-winning independent films, as well as television for National Geographic and HBO. Ligairi is currently in post production on a documentary made with Athabaskan communities in Alaska and developing new projects related to his Pasifika heritage.
Cecilia R. Mejia
Cecilia R. Mejia has worked in development for non-profit organizations. She’s worked with several grassroots organizations focusing on underrepresented communities, which led to her working in film. Cecilia has produced a number of short films focusing on critical social impact issues. She’s the lead producer of the Sony-acquired feature film YELLOW ROSE, a Social Impact Producer of the award-winning doc CALL HER GANDA (TIFF 2018), and Co-Producer for LINGUA FRANCA (Tribeca All-Access 2019). She is also the Creative Director of Art of Me and an adjunct professor at NYU.
Joshua Oduga is the Exhibitions and Public Programs Manager at Art + Practice (A+P) in Leimert Park. He has over a decade of expertise working directly with artist communities and artistic organizations including Center Theater Group, East West Players, Visual Communications, and The Sundance Institute. Much of his work during this time has focused on bridging the gap between groups of artists and the communities they work in, always working towards the free exchange of resources and ideas.
INTERNATIONAL NARRATIVE FEATURE COMPETITION
Chanel Kong is Associate Curator of Moving Image at Hong Kong’s M+ Museum for Visual Culture, where she curated programmes such as M+ Screenings: Southeast Asia Moving Image Mixtape (2018), and M+ Live Art: Miraculous Trajectories (2019), co-presented with Art Basel Hong Kong. Prior to M+, Chanel has worked in various film festivals and organizations such as Visual Communications and the British Film Institute, and was Associate Editor for two anthologies about Asian cinema.
Marty Preciado is a cultural promoter, curator, and cultural equity advocate. Preciado serves as Program Manager for Grand Park, a park owned by Los Angeles County and operated by The Music Center, celebrating Los Angeles’ cultural vitality. Marty has developed arts programming in the interest to deepen power, representation, and access between cultural sectors and audiences. Preciado’s research and curatorial projects focus on transcultural exchange of politics and gender, with an emphasis on music and TV/film. Published author in NPR, NYLON Español, Yahoo, Hello Giggles, Noisey, and Remezcla.
Paula Guthat is the co-founder and programmer of Cinema Detroit, an independent non-profit arthouse theater, which is also the only 7-day-a-week movie theater in Greater Downtown Detroit. She is known for her eclectic choices in all genres, from mainstream releases and world cinema, to cult classics and locally-made work, and for using them as springboards for discussion and analysis with the community. Her programming regularly includes films by BIPOC makers, immigrants, lifelong Detroiters, women, LGBTQ+ and/or disabled people, part of Cinema Detroit’s efforts to increase everyone’s involvement in film and film studies.
DOCUMENTARY FEATURE COMPETITION
Cai Thomas is a documentary filmmaker and cinematographer telling verite stories at the intersection of location, self-determination, and identity about Black youth and elders. She is a Leo that grew up in Miami’s Liberty City neighborhood. Cai is a member of the NeXt Doc collective and is a Sisters In Cinema fellow. Her short documentary QUEENIE will debut at NewFest in October.
Junko Goda is an actor, filmmaker, and consultant. Her experiences have taken her to the Rockies for THE HATEFUL EIGHT as the interpreter for the production designer, to producer of IT’S ASIAN MEN, featuring a majority female crew and highlighted by NPR, to recent appearances on SWAT and a Chapman University MFA thesis. She also consults as a Japanese/English interpreter, translator, and subtitler, and has worked with numerous filmmakers over the years.
Miko Revereza is a filmmaker from the Philippines raised in California and currently residing between several countries. His upbringing as an undocumented immigrant in the United States informs his relationship with moving images. DROGA! (2014), DISINTEGRATION 93-96 (2017), NO DATA PLAN (2018) and DISTANCING (2019) have widely screened at festivals across the world. Aside from these films, Revereza produces expanded cinema, direct animation, performance, criticism and publishing including works such as Biometrics (2018), Live Cinema (2019-2020) and Towards a Stateless Cinema (2019). He is a 2021 recipient of the Vilcek Foundation Prize for Creative Promise in Filmmaking.
Annie Choi owns Found Coffee, a specialty coffee shop in the Eagle Rock neighborhood of LA. Prior to becoming a small business owner, she worked in the post production television industry (KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS, PROJECT RUNWAY: ALL STARS). Though she still aspires to work at Pixar one day, she stays connected to storytelling by sponsoring LAAPFF’s Opening Night every year.
Kimiko Matsuda-Lawrence is a writer-director hailing from Washington, DC and Honolulu, Hawai‘i. After working in theater in New York alongside Anna Deveare Smith, Diane Paulus, and Kerry Washington, Kimiko transitioned to television and film, writing for TV shows TWENTIES (Seasons 1 & 2) and BOOMERANG (Season 2). Her past work includes the plays Holding: A Queer Black Love Story; Black Magic; and I, Too, Am Harvard (also a viral photo campaign). She is currently developing her debut short film JUNIOR HIGH.
Mahin Ibrahim is the Director of Multicultural Audience Engagement for The Walt Disney Studios, currently running its brand-new short film incubator for underrepresented directors, Launchpad. She was previously at Refinery29 in development/production, and spent the majority of her career at Google and YouTube, where she helped run production programs with an emphasis on diversity and inclusion at its flagship studio for YouTube creators. In addition, she writes creative non-fiction, and holds an M.F.A. in Production from USC and a B.A. in Mass Communication and Business Administration from UC Berkeley.
Nia Hampton is a multidisciplinary artist who has consistently found community with black femme filmmakers in her travels around the world. During her first solo art show “Drapetomania; The Strong Urge to Escape” Nia created and hosted the first Black Femme Supremacy Film Festival as a means to hold space for black femme filmmakers from all over the world. As an international freelance journalist by trade who has written for sites like Dazed, Vice, Paste Magazine, LA Weekly and the Village Voice, Nia hopes that the festival will travel and meet black femme filmmakers where they are, wherever that may be.