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Old March 28th, 2006, 04:19 PM   #1
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"Domestic Foreign" Films

Hey all,

I have made a few films recently for which I have can't pin down the correct outlet for them. I am an American independent filmmaker in Phoenix, Arizona.

I made a short film in the Phoenix area last year that was an Italian period piece set in Rome in the 1950's. The film is in Italian (lead actor is an Italian native) with English subtitles (and any others we needed to make).

Right now I am finishing a film I shot a year ago in the Boston area. The film is an homage to Asian art films. It is in Chinese with English subtitles, using American (non-Chinese) actors.

Both films are done in all seriousness, they are not intended to make fun of or offend in any way. It is just a reflection of the many foreign films I know and love, along with my love of language in general.

Now I am in a quandry. I mean, where do you exhibit such films? An international film festival in the US can't legitimately accept it as a foreign film. And I'm not sure the reception I would get at Asian-American film festivals, though I'm interested to give it a shot. I want to be sensitive to peoples views.

What do you guys think, is there a place for such films? To the Asian-Americans (and true Asians) on this board, would you be offended by an American film in your native language?

Thanks,
Josh
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Old March 30th, 2006, 07:14 AM   #2
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No matter what you do, someone is going to be offended by it. But don't let that stop you - I, for one, am getting sick and tired of the most easily (and usually irrationally) offended members of society being the ones making the rules for the rest of us. Unless what you've done is blatant hate-mongering, go ahead and release it. If someone is offended by it, they can just suck it up, walk away, and get a life. Art by its very nature is likely to p*&^ somebody off if it's any good.
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Old March 30th, 2006, 01:48 PM   #3
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I agree. You can't stop yourself simply because you're afraid of offending the ignorant. If you do, you're stopping yourself from possibly attaining the goal you're chasing. Sometimes a little or a lot of controversy is a good thing. Great publication and if the controversy is over something silly as natives getting offended by a foreign imitating their style of language and have no concrete evidence or logical reasoning that it is meant to be offensive, the public will see right through it and your name is still good.

I hope that made sense.

All in all, just do it and don't be afraid. Like Steve said, someones will ALWAYS getting offended, even by the most unlikeliest of things. There's always someone so sensitive that they must cry up a storm and get attention.
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Old March 30th, 2006, 01:53 PM   #4
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Yes, I agree with you both. Fear didn't stop us from making the films, and Italian-speakers who saw the Italian film responded favorably. It's another level to submit my film to an Asian-American film festival, though. I can see it would depend on who opens the package. Someone might love it for what it is, and someone else might take offense. I am more worried with wasting money on festival entry fees, if it won't be taken seriously.

Well, I guess maybe I'm the first person making films like this, though I find that hard to believe. :)
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