Clubhouse: What Hollywood Doesn't Understand Transcript
Mas Moriya: . [00:00:00] My name is Masami Moriya. I am the founder strong Asian lead, and we want to open up conversations about the industry and what it means to about me Asian American within the film industry.
I think we talk a lot about being Asian American in the sense of politics society the differences between each other, the whole diaspora which is all great and much necessary. But I think when we start to bring it into different industries, different topics, whether it be fashion music, and we just happened to be film and entertainment because in my opinion, media and entertainment is the propaganda maker, if whatever we see on TV in our screens is generally, even if we know it’s fake, our mind starts to realize what’s real. It thinks it’s real to a certain degree. When people who aren’t Asian watch what we’re doing, watch Asian people on screen, and it’s improper. It’s totally wrong. And no one does anything change it.
That’s how they think who we are. [00:01:00] So what are we going to do about it? And that’s why we’ll create a strong Asian lead at our recruiting our rooms. And we coming back doing this weekly around the same time, about six o’clock on Wednesdays. So I’m I’m inviting anybody up if they would like to come up and expressing opinion just joining the conversation on what we’re building here and tell us about yourself.
Tell if you’ve had, if you’ve ever had a microaggression or an issue within the industry that becomes like, oh, this is something That needs to be talked about and I want changed and we need to build something. I think this is a good place to do it. And it’s a safe space, no judgment here.
And you can always call, I’m not perfect. So you can always call me out and call anybody else out here as well. And we’ll help moderate that discussion. But thanks everybody for joining in. Please feel free to not feel free, but please do ping your friends in, share it around and share the link.
If you want to you can always follow us on a short vision lead and find those things, but until then let’s continue the conversation. But [00:02:00] yeah, Alex, so tell us, you’ve been working in the industry for some time. This is obviously there’s an issue within the acting industry.
So she, for Asian men all the issues that are coming up what doesn’t Hollywood understand about either being Asian or being an Asian in entertainment? Any opinions, anything.
Alex Christian: I have a lot of things being an Asian. Yeah. So I think one of the biggest things that people or Hollywood doesn’t understand is that, just because somebody is Asian it doesn’t mean that you’re a, like a novelty, in, in, in my opinion my whole goal is to become, a regular lead actor in a multi, ethnically diverse cast and have it not even be a question like the way that the flash does it or any of the CW shows, they’re really good at normalizing people’s sexual orientation or their ethnicity and stuff like that.
And so it’s not [00:03:00] necessarily just having an Asian center task. Crazy rich Asians, or like always be my, maybe which I think that those movies are fantastic. They’re really well done. They’re incredible. But I think Hollywood needs to have more inclusiveness in a diverse cast without it being a question.
If that makes sense. Some of the other gripes that in this industry things that I faced on set, I was doing a Jack in the box commercial back in February, and one of the makeup artists. And I’m sure that everyone in this room has gotten this question she leaves off with, so where are you from?
And I think you guys know where this is going, oh I was born in New York. It was in California. And lived in Texas for a while. No, but like, where are your people from. And that just that really triggered me because, and then when I told her that I was half Korean, half Filipino, she goes only made go-to song the other day.
It’s you eat? Go to song. And I was like, I don’t know. I [00:04:00] made penny pasta the other day. Do you eat pasta? There’s such a, an odd sort of question to ask, especially on set. And it’s not even something that I had thought about. Like my ethnicity, wasn’t something that I had thought about until somebody had brought it up.
Me being a working actor, I don’t know. I guess
Mas Moriya: I’m that’s super valid. I think that’s, I, I haven’t heard that one yet. And I think that’s a real thing because I think people want to be kind and try to relate, but they’re relating with things that are that they wouldn’t, no one else would ask them to relate.
Yeah, I wouldn’t ask them. Do you eat French fries? Yeah.
Alex Christian: Exactly.
Mas Moriya: A universal thing, but sure, sure. Redo. And maybe I don’t, all the time, but at the same time, why is that the thing that lead to in a way that you want to feel comfortable? Instead of maybe asking a little more Hey, I don’t know enough about Korean or Filipino culture a little bit.
Is there, you know what, I don’t know, just [00:05:00] don’t come at your family. I mean that in, that would be none of the sudden say really that needs to happen either, but at the same time it’s less trivial, I think certain degree. Yeah.
Alex Christian: Exactly. And the other thing growing up as an Asian guy in wanting to get into entertainment, it’s that I always saw, growing up, we always saw the any time there’s an Asian guy in a in a movie, it was always because they were doing martial arts or they’re doing kung-fu or they were being the nerdy, it tech guy, which had been cast for both things.
And that is something that I also really want to break the pattern of being cast as the stereotypical roles. Like we’re more than that. And so when I started modeling, it was because I wanted people to see us for, just being people and not necessarily for being stereotypes.
And I’ve had some mild success doing what I’m doing, what I’ve done, and there’s still a lot more to, [00:06:00] a lot more to do. And my whole goal in doing all of this. No, put the proof in the pudding and let my work speak for itself and change things that way.
Mas Moriya: Yeah, I think that’s, a lot of the goal is just to be not sought after, as something that’s different or put into boxes that we can just be as an actor is something that’s people just want just to be treated like an actor and maybe with a different background, maybe some uniqueness that gives depth to the character, but doesn’t depth and background, but it doesn’t mean to be the forefront thing.
So I just think about, I love, always be my Navy was always, I think that’s like the closest thing to a really great Asian-American film that doesn’t touch on the aspects of being Asian-American, but has a lot of Asian Americans in it. But it also doesn’t shy away from that.
That’s the part of the culture is some of the food, some of the ideas of the decisions and think [00:07:00] that’s a really perfect thing. But when it comes to something like crazy rich Asians, which, is fine formulaic and whatever, I don’t bother with the formula, but it like on, on it, like dived into the culture is really heavily.
And also didn’t keep it in as Asian American. It really was like an Asian film, in my opinion. Asian-Americans as actors, I think that’s another topic of discussion too, is like what makes an Asian American film? Something like what was that movie that came out recently? It was like a wish, not wish dragon, which dragon was great.
There was another animated movie where all there’s a lot of the actors were Asian American, but the storyline was set in China and then, fictional China. And I think that becomes like a way. I don’t know Asian American does it mean Asian-American when it’s speaking both spoken in English, I think, is that what it makes it?
I don’t know. It’s a very interesting topics of being what makes an Asian American film and what stereotypes are we going to break here? Even if we’re not aiming to [00:08:00] break them, what does it mean to be? I don’t know, just different than what a stereotype is. Just be a human, be the person that they want to be three dimensional character that has not even perfect.
I don’t want perfect characters because perfect characters are boring as fuck. I want flawed characters, real characters that make terrible decisions and try to make up for them. I think yesterday, a couple days ago I watched I think one is one day I’ll find the film in a minute. It was that.
The film that they made about the the white woman and the Asian man who get married, but he gets sick and, and they have as a, based on a true story. I loved it. I think it was a good film, but it was too perfect. He was too perfect. They characters were too perfect. And just became not exactly hallmark, but it definitely hallmark it’s definitely that style of love story [00:09:00] romance is gesture. It’s not supposed to be anything crazy, but I love, but I also love that. It wasn’t I did like that. It wasn’t, based on he, he wasn’t Asian, he was Asian. But he was like American and I think that was good.
I think that’s a good one. Start to be like, he was a sexy man. He knew how to cook. He was struggling with his job. I don’t want to give too many spoilers was not, it’s a hallmark, it’s not really crazy. I think he wanted to quit his job. The girlfriend pushes it to do, and it’s oh, you make me better.
I think that’s great. But what I would have loved, like the go the extra mile, which I could see this is probably not done by someone who trying to push boundaries. They didn’t add in his family. They didn’t add his mother or his father to add not cultural touch, but family drama. I think that’s a huge thing about being Asian American is the family drama between not only being Asian in America, but the family dynamics of being.
And this [00:10:00] film is just kinda just glossed over. It was all about him, his white girlfriend and his, mainly his white other friends. Which was, and tell her it was a diversity. Yeah, it was pretty great. But I just, it didn’t touch on being Asian. I think that’s a new topic, but anyways, again, anyone, please jump into the conversation.
I don’t want to hear myself ramble. But Alex, so tell me, is there any, what kind of films, film projects do you feel like have been done correctly in the past? I don’t know ever, like what do you find to be like a really great example of a good film and then maybe one that maybe is not so good.
Alex Christian: Is this as far as representing,
Mas Moriya: let’s just try and stay on topic here. What’s what we’re trying to change. So I think the thing about. I think that part of it is that we don’t see great Asian films, but a lot of times we just don’t see them because they don’t hit mainstream. They don’t get distributed in the right way so that we never hear about them.
There’s movies, like double happiness, [00:11:00] which is an Asian Canadian film with Sandra. Oh. But I’ve never heard of it. And then someone pointed out, so you write, and there’s so many great thoughts that I’ve just heard that you have to like, go look for the sun runs through there. So have you seen anything recently you want to share with us and oh, this was a really great example.
Alex Christian: No. And maybe this kind of, speaks to the the social climate that we’re talking about is that I honestly can’t name one off the top of my head. And. Yeah, no, I just, I can’t think of anything. If anybody think of one police chime in, cause
Mas Moriya: I’m drawing a blank. Yeah. Yeah. We will be paying your friends.
Let’s talk about this. I think that’s a, that’s one of the issues I’ve also started to recently find I don’t know how many people here watch and go seek out Asian films from places in Asia. I’ve been recently watching a lot of old, very old Japanese dramas and I’m just crying.
I found myself crying in a few of them. And you, what I love, [00:12:00] not only that they were in depth characters, but the, it wasn’t whole, this particular show was about being Japanese. But at the same time, they were strong leading characters and with so much depth and so many twists and turns in their own life and decisions that they made.
Someone very culturally relevant to being Japanese, but also just maybe we wouldn’t do it here in America. Just because of the climate of what I was watching. But I found myself drawn into it. I was a 10 hour drama that I binged right through. And even though I’m not, as, I’m not a fan of subtitles, I’m just going to have to sit through it.
It’s not my favorite cause I have no ADHD and just have and have both once I get in w what I watched it. I have again, back to subtitles for a second. I I
Mas Moriya: a little bit ADHD so I can get distracted very easily. So watching the film as a filmmaker and then seeing eyes and emotions and characters, but then having to read my whole film, I would rather read a [00:13:00] book.
But at the same time we need, we do understand that subtitles are really helpful, not only for storytelling, when I watch it without the subtitles, I, you can’t get it. You don’t get the context of what they’re doing. You can see what maybe what doing grabbed from it, but the in-depth of emotion and the decisions they make and what the characters are focused on.
It’s not about themselves all the time. It’s something it’s always, it’s sometimes, always about the other person. And I think that’s a really big difference as well. Is that in Asian films from Asia and Asian cultures, it’s about the collective good rather than the individual. And I think that’s something that we do see in our culture a lot.
Alex Christian: Yeah that’s fantastic. I, as far as movies with strong Asian leads, I can only think of ones from, that I’ve seen that are from Asia. The man from nowhere, or there was one of my favorites is fighter in the wind which is also a Korean, it’s a Korean Japanese one, [00:14:00] I believe.
Yeah. Other than that, I just it’s, I can’t think of one here where there’s one strong Asian male lead that I can call like a really good movie. I just don’t know of them. And I think maybe that speaks to the problem that we have.
Mas Moriya: And what do you see that being the problem? Is it that because Hollywood all’s age, you can’t find good Asian actors or can’t find a good story.
But my thing is they, people were making it, but they don’t share it out. I think if something like better luck tomorrow or the joy luck club other classics, even some documentaries, old documentaries, like the slanted screen about Asian-American men in Hollywood, which is very rarely relevant still today.
Yeah, even, but you may have a, I don’t know, there’s just, there is so much my thing. But before we get into my thing, what w what do you, Alex, what do you think could be the the change that needs to be made? It obviously want to build that table. We need the executives. We [00:15:00] need, representation, all of these different places, but what’s something that you feel, or do you feel that there could be changed systemically?
Like what would be the thing that needs to be changed if you had the choice?
Oh, boy. Yeah. I’m the hard question guy here. Let’s really get real talk deep in here. This is called pass mate. Yeah, no
Alex Christian: kidding. For me it’s pretty basic. It’s just cast more Asian guys or Asian girls as leads. There’s no question about that in my mind, at least. In granted, if somebody else has, is a better fit for the role, because they are a better actor and they portray the story or portrayed the character and bring the story to life better.
Sure. Okay. I get that. But I think that it’s, for me, it’s a simple matter of just cast them if they’re really great. They’re really fantastic. Why should ethnicity matter? Because I’ve often been able to play. These lead roles where it’s not [00:16:00] even a question and it’s because my acting is I don’t want to like to my own work, but it’s because the casting director thought that my acting is good for that role, regardless of what I looked like or what my ethnicity was.
And I think that’s more of that needs to happen. And the reason why I said earlier, why I couldn’t think of anything any of those movies is because I can’t, I really can’t think of any blockbusters that are well-known with the Asian, with Asian, these of course, like joy luck club I thought was fantastic.
And I totally forgot about that movie, but the ones that, the other ones that you were listening to, like I’ve never heard of before.
Mas Moriya: Yeah. And there’s none, there needs to be a better list. There’s always like the top 10 and stuff like that, but, they’re just, there is it for me, it’s the lack of marketing and the lack of interest in white Hollywood to think that they could sell it.
Like even if they tried to sell it, they don’t know how. No. And that’s the thing is like they could buy it and try to put it on their streaming platforms. But when it’s going to end up happening is that they don’t know how to reach the audience who wants to watch it. So like better luck tomorrow.
[00:17:00] I think you can, I can look it up and see if you can watch it anywhere right now. But that’s an old classic that’s like 1995 who’s what’s his, name’s in it. I’m forgetting his name right now. I’m blanking. But they have, it’s a really gritty, gritty, a film that feels like something that should have come out in that, during that time.
But also so real Asian-American men and masculinity and what the harmful home homefulness of what that masculinity is and how boys will be boys in certain ways. And how do you get out of trouble? Let me see. I can now. Yeah tomorrow. Yeah. Yeah. I’d love to
Alex Christian: check that out. If
Mas Moriya: you can send me fine, let’s see.
It’s on Amazon prime. Has it on for a seven day free trial. I want to try that one. Let me see. Let’s go to anyone to find any films, just watch.com. I think it’s just watched conway.tv.com is great. Great little website to see where you want to watch it. [00:18:00] It’s only on it’s on most of the platforms you have to pay two or three bucks to find them.
You can find them in different other areas too, if you want. But that’s something that’s a definitely old classic that’s oh, Justin Chon is in it. And directed by Justin Lin. Like this is one of his first films, if not his first film. So it’s all the stuff that we have to go back into the archives to find.
And we need to, I find more people who are finding these, making sure that they’re getting watched. I find old things all the time. That just like, why haven’t I seen this one or nobody’s ever talked about that. And I think the prob part of the problem is again, back to the marketing and selling, but just finding where the interest is. I don’t know something in it. For example, like I, if you, if anyone has ever listened to a grain of sand, which is the soundtrack from a soundtrack is a, it’s an album by a lot of one of the first Asian American. Self-proclaimed Asian American bands back in the sixties and seventies you can listen to it on Spotify.[00:19:00]
It’s a grain of sand. One of the, one of my favorite songs in the classic song is called we are the children and let me see if I can find I might even be able to play it. We can play it here too. I don’t know if I can post it on my podcast but we can definitely check it out. Listen. But one of the things about it is that they talk about, here’s some of the titles, yellow, Pearl not peril, Pearl, right?
We are the children. So most as Stasio souls which is translate that we are the, we are Asians. Imperialism is another world word for hunger, free the land in war of the flee. It’s a very classic album by Chris condo. Iijima no book no Buco Miyamoto and Charlie. And what I thought was funny is I want to see new Boko has been doing music for a long time.
Like she’s still doing music today. She, she came up with a music video about climate change, like this year which is fantastic. But I looked up Chris con condo Iijima and he did another album with Charlie chin afterwards. This was the only album that they put out altogether [00:20:00] and they put out another album called I think it’s called back-to-back and you can’t find it anywhere.
And if part of it was that The you couldn’t sell it. No one wanted to buy it. They made the album. You can find one song on YouTube. You can buy a vinyl record of it. But you can’t really buy anything else. I think it looked on Amazon. I was like, not available and it’s not on Spotify. It’s one of those things like, wow, you listened to it.
She was like Asian dudes, little bit country, a little bit of old rock but does see that get lost a history is really, that’s not only surprising. It was not non surprising. It’s that’s what’s happens. I see it all the time, but it’s scary to think that could have been lost to history and that we were never, we could never find it.
That kind of stuff scares me. Cause if they’re not going to put stuff out and share it and keep it keep would record it’s going to get lost. And I think that’s something that we need to start changing is like not only being. [00:21:00] Diligent in our works and making great work, but making preserving it and making sure it’s able to watch a thing I just saw.
And jump in and please again, anybody raise their hand. I don’t need to keep talking to myself, but I just saw a summer of soul. There was a screening last night and what they said was that the, there was a Harlem, it was called the Harlem cultural concert of cultural festival back in 1969.
The same year Woodstock was, and there was over 300,000 people think that they said who came? It was in middle Harlem in, in New York around the same time as Woodstock. And it was so beautiful. And so many people came out very Charles. Nina Simone, like all these classic people came out and it was just so beautiful to watch this concert, w and it kept saying there’s just so a sea of black people.
I love this feeling that they all came out to witness and be here and they recorded it like general mills [00:22:00] and con some coffee company, the old coffee company, I forgot which one it was. They all sponsored it and they had 12 cameras and they recorded it all. And then it got lost. No one would buy it for 40 years, 50 years.
How many years has been 69? Like 50 years. It’s just stuck, stuck in a basement for forever. And we didn’t get to watch no one to buy a five-year series on it. Everybody wanted to post up video and footage from Woodstock. And it wasn’t until this year that they put out this movie that they said, we need to watch this.
And it was just so visceral to see all his footage, color footage from this event and all this music that was there. And it was just like, that could have been lost to history if no one had recorded it or no one had preserved it, that stuff can get ruined because it’s analog and just lost. So I think it’s just something to think about when we’re creating these things and looking into our past into what was done, because I know [00:23:00] for a fact that this the Christian, this the grain of sand crew the band, they had a concert and I saw people out there and they’ve done many concerts, but I know I’ve seen pictures.
I’m like, where is that concert for you? Somebody has that concert footage and I want to find it cause I know it’s there. So yeah
Alex Christian: that’s wild. That’s it? I’m sorry. Yeah, no, I think that’s wild that this stuff, quality, really awesome entertaining. Stuff, media is getting lost and I don’t know what the key is in order to make it more mainstream, and I think that they’re in begs the question, how do we do that for our culture in media, as Asians? Not just those guys, all of us what’s the key. How do we make ourselves mainstream and viral without being fetishized? Because I can’t tell you time and time again, how many people wanted to date me because I was simply an Asian.
Not because they saw me as being a human being, [00:24:00] they were like, oh cool. You’re Korean. Guess what I love BTS, we should go out. And it’s that is that really all that you see? And so how do we then create cultivate Asian leads? Without it being a fetish, and I guess you bringing all that stuff about that music getting lost really just sparked a big interest in my mind while I was listening to you talk how do we do that?
What’s the next step? How do we change that in the big thing for me growing up was I never, like I grew up with that. I never saw myself as being family. I never saw myself as being the lead guy because I never saw it. And so what’s the key. How do we do that? How do we make that cultural shift to where that’s not even a question where we can be cast regularly as the leads and be seen as sexy, it’s Steve Harvey once was asked a question where it was like, oh or I forgot what he said, but he said that basically Asian guys aren’t sure.
Or they’ll never be as attractive as white guys. And [00:25:00] then there was a viral video that went around where I was asking a bunch of people like, oh, so what do you think of Asian guys? And they’re like, oh, I don’t know. They’re nerdy. They’re not attractive. That’s always been such a big part of my story in entertainment that I’m trying to change that.
And I don’t know how to make that cultural shift or how to make things go viral or how to make, capture that interest. I don’t know if anybody has
Mas Moriya: any insights. Yeah. I think that’s the key here, right? It’s that it’s there’s, there is no one answer, right? There’s no going viral is right.
That can always can be planned, but then it’s okay, what is that? What’s that going to be BTS is going viral. Great for them. I don’t listen to them. I don’t know if that’s it, them, it’s just, that’s not my style. I don’t listen to a lot of music. But also just does that become fetishized.
I would like to see, less than fetishization for sure. I’d also like to see more relevant and culturally different in between the films. Like I want white America to not just by looking at us, but like to a degree, like at [00:26:00] least look at our last names or names and understand, oh, you’re probably Korean.
I, once I started for twenty-five years, I thought I was a white man. And just because it didn’t seem I cell phone screen and say exactly the same thing you said, I just thought it was ugly and all that kind of stuff. But I also know when did, when people did fetishize me, it became it felt like I needed to distance myself from that because I didn’t want to be that.
I also grew up in a very white culture. Sure. But when I feel like when. When we want to change a way that we can start to think about changing this is using building our table. Yes. I think that’s a really important thing to factor. And we’re trying to help do that through our new program, but we need to be as a community, more involved with trying to find and seek out those projects.
Now I’m not saying you only have to bring it, Alex, you bringing up people,[00:27:00]
you bringing up people. Hey, Derek, how are you doing?
Alex Christian: I think I saw Derek’s hand raised. And so I just had to accept because
Mas Moriya: yeah, you got me moderator because I left that room at the first, the beginning. Yeah. Yeah. I don’t, I can actually take off your monitor or maybe not. Yeah. Try not to you don’t bring anybody out.
Cause this is, we want to, sometimes there’s issues. Not nothing, no offense to you. Derek we’ve had, there’s always issues. And sometimes if you’re, especially, if you don’t know what you’re doing, people will come up and troll. We’ve had people say, you all eat a bunch of dogs. I’m like, oh my God. And so you got to always get shit, check, profile, check out chicks, Instagram.
So stuff like that. But nothing on Derek actually. He’s our new guests. So Hey Derek, how are you doing today?
Are you guys doing just fine? Doing just fine. Yeah. What brings you into the room?
Darrick Collins: No, man. I just heard you guys talking about, the topic of what [00:28:00] Hollywood doesn’t understand about age and film and TV. I just think that I don’t think it understands African-American, I’m thinking Asian, they understand Latin Latino next.
I think they just don’t, they just don’t get it. I think diversity and inclusion for all of us is just, it’s just say it just, it’s a disease that, I pray one day with all your speed equal and together and your more projects and what have you. So I just, I don’t know, it has to get better and we have to become one.
I don’t understand that so much money and diversity. If you guys look at anything that works for Netflix, Sony
Mas Moriya: universal.
Darrick Collins: MGM, there’s a budget for diversity. Let’s spend these amount of
Mas Moriya: dollars on, I think we lost ya. You still there? Oh, okay. Yeah,
Darrick Collins: I’m there. I, and I’m a producer, [00:29:00] I’m a reality show producer here in Los Angeles.
So I see these things and I always talk to exacts who are not diverse and they all say, oh yeah, we have millions of dollars of diversity from this company and they’re just sitting there, I’m just being real. So I’m just telling, I’m just giving you guys game of what’s going on industry.
So I just think Holly doesn’t really care at
Mas Moriya: the, we have to that’s so fucking ridiculous. That’s crazy. Yeah, go ahead. Go ahead,
Alex Christian: David. I have a quick conversation with Eric, if you don’t mind. Derek, yeah. So what’s the pushback that you normally get other than they don’t like, is it just that they just don’t care or is it, are they what is it that’s making them not receptive to being more diverse as a producer.
Darrick Collins: I’m there. I’m sorry, guys. My phone keeps ringing. I think it’s, for me, I think it’s really, I see power a power struggle. [00:30:00] Hey, I have a power. I want to be the person in the room and say that, oh, I got this green lit it through the network or I’ve got this, so that, that is, that’s a problem as well.
So I see a lot of that. Power is about it’s green. Because there’s so much money for everybody to, to all the networks, university, but it’s like nine. I’m sorry, it’s 32 networks that I can count it up. I can go through them right now, but I want them saying yes, money for everybody, but they just if there’s, if you have executive board has nine members and they all are Caucasian and that one Latino now, one Asian on that one.
African-American how are you going to actually get in? And they want the, I guess ever looked at a right array as a new network that Ava DuVernay created. And she created this program it’s platform, as she said, She got tired as directors. It’s like her fourth, fifth year, as directors he’s like Downton it [00:31:00] now.
But she said, when she got to the set, she realized that all the friends kept bringing all the crew members. So the director, the producers the ads, they will bring their friends. And, there’ll be on one show for three to two months and they leave, go to note shows, you see the same people should say, wait a minute, this has got to stop.
So this nepotism of bringing people in and not allowing the Asian, the Latin, Latin African-American person to come in, at least try at least submit, or at least act like you’re going to interview them. It’s like Dick decline. Like I can just don’t at least act like it. So she said she kept seeing these this phase.
She just said, no, wait a minute. She created the crash. My rate is a R a Y. And it’s for diverse talent. Like the, the grips did lighten guys that the Gaspers, the set decoration location managers. So she creates platforms just for that. So think that’s [00:32:00] what it is.
It’s just power and there’s room for everybody to eat on. So that’s my STD. No,
Alex Christian: it’s fascinating. David, what are your thoughts on
Mas Moriya: I hate to use the term white washing, but like
Alex Christian: my, yeah. Like my opinion on testing everybody, regardless of race is that whoever is the better actor for the job should get the role, right? If they can portray the character and bring this story to life, then they should do it.
But then ghost in the shell. It’s that was a little bit of a different story. So what’s your take on. Or why do you think that
Mas Moriya: had happened? Just real quick responded there? Yeah, I think that arrays an amazing program. I think that something like that is needed because people do hire their friends and it’s not even, they hire their friends, but they hire the people.
They know who they’ve worked with before. So systemically they work with other white people. They’re going to hire them because they know who they are. They can trust them. And that’s been the issue is that because they keep, [00:33:00] Hey man, I’m on the shoe. You want to come with me? Yeah, sure. They don’t hire somebody new.
And if they have any diverse friends, they’re not going to hire them, even if they did. They’re like, I don’t know if I can trust you because you haven’t worked with me before, but then you got to get them to work with you. So it’s so dumb. So I think that’s why, arrays really great. I will say one of the pushback I will have on that is that it’s great for the black community.
I don’t see myself in their diversity program. And even if I saw a few Asians, I feel like they’re just categorized as Asian. Not in Southern categories. So one of the reasons why we’re building the Asian film network it’s not available yet. We’re doing a beta at the end of the month.
The still in the process, but we’re going to break it down into every kind of category, as many categories as we can think of. And then we can find online. So if you’re south Asian, you’re not just south Asian, you might be big and golly or a Sri Lankan. You might be fifth generation Sri Lankan, who, whose parents were refugees.
Like we want to break it down that deep because the [00:34:00] issue is that we are such a diverse community in not one of us is none of us are just Asian American. We’re all, we collectively have to say that. And we collectively come together as a community, but when you just represented Asian, it doesn’t, it.
It puts us all in our umbrella. It makes it a monolith where there’s so many different people who have different skills and abilities. I keep getting people who ask me all the time Hey, do you have a list of API writers? I’m like I do, but depends on the story that you’re trying to tell.
It depends on what, who you want to have. So like Disney, just put out a casting call for chain can dunk. Like you wouldn’t necessarily want to put someone who’s Vietnamese on a Chinese show that the culture is different. And so that’s something that needs to be looked at in a way that works. But obviously array is such, it’s got a, it’s got a brand it’s able to, and it’s got so much power.
And I think that’s what that’s well,
Darrick Collins: let me, but let me add to that QME also too. She does have some. Some [00:35:00] Asian people are in our database. She doesn’t, I’m and this is the friend of mine. Who’s within not, I don’t produce this, so I can’t be in that database. But if you’re, for location managers ads, there are some Asian people descent in those categories.
So you should definitely, I don’t know. I’m not sure. I think you’re
Mas Moriya: active. I’m not sure. I think you are. But I’m put myself in an acrobatic, too many things going on. I leave that to the actors, but I guess you.
Darrick Collins: But it’s, I’m saying that definitely, there’s definitely some, that’s a friend of mine.
Who’s just in state, she’s in there and she got in, but for one, say this, you just can’t walk in, by the way, you have to have a credit. So if you don’t have a credit, you still you’re still knocking on their door. You gotta have some kind of something like, okay, he’d done something. He did an independent film, whatever.
So they have a credit. So she, it’s open. And I’m gonna say this too. I think also too at the inclusion and diversity department, I think that’s where the inclusion department sometimes, we don’t even get to the table on jobs because [00:36:00] most times we don’t even get, we do this, a job is going on and it’s so hush chefs behind it, behind the door and behind the curtain, that person gets the job.
And then it’s oh, you didn’t know about that job. That hap no, no one told me. Cause they already hired, you see what I’m saying? It’s not, that’s nothing to, we don’t even get to the tables. And I can just say that from an African-American standpoint, we always get to the table late.
We get to take one. It’s almost like productive, always gone and said, oh yeah, we thought about you guys. But no, we got talked about it. Yes. So I’m sorry. It just always happens like that. So it’s really bad, man. And I just, I prayed that these diversity departments includes departments.
It departments, within the studios like Sony and Warner brothers, just, just, do something like do a program for writers, directors, producers, actors just keep it going, cause I know some companies don’t even have that. I’m going to say any names, but we gotta change.
And I’m saying that I hate that we changing this after George Flores died, black men with [00:37:00] Marino, Cameron now is oh, you have to do something. We have to. We gotta create some programs. The 2020, when George passed that all these that were started by the Netflix had a fund for a hundred million dollars.
Where is that program?
They created this big press. Where is it?
Mas Moriya: Not about that one too?
Darrick Collins: So I’m like, come on these people, man,
Mas Moriya: they got us back. Yeah. And I’ll say two things before you go back to that white washing question is that one that diversity program then Netflix, a hundred thousand, a hundred million dollar fund or something.
Like I noticed they didn’t add Asian-American in there. And I was like, why? And one of them, one of the reasons why we have stroke, one of the reasons why we have strong region lead is because Netflix has strong black lead, strong brown lead, strong LGBTQ lead, Sean translate strong. I think it was another John Strong female lead.
They didn’t have the Asians and I’m like, what the fuck? We still it. Yeah. [00:38:00] Yeah.
Darrick Collins: Let me add to that one. And it’s just, and I shouldn’t really say it, but it’s just what it is the truth, but the president of Netflix is married
Mas Moriya: to a black, by the way, this is being recorded. So if you need to tone things down, it’s fine.
But yeah. Okay.
Darrick Collins: Oh it’s all good. It’s public. He’s married and he’s a white guy, by the way, he spreads a black woman. It’s just what it is. But Hey, you’re right. There should be more programs and they should create a program.
These are a lot of markets. So you’ve got to make a lot of money out to spend this market. Lot of money. I have to Indian market, a lot of me at the black market. It’s a lot of money out there that Netflix is picking up and just, they just built this new theater auditorium off of Hollywood.
I think that I’m sunset in like violin, I
Mas Moriya: believe. Did you guys see that? Or was that the one that they bought was that AMC who bought the, our client, they built the date is behind you like that. [00:39:00]
Darrick Collins: Nobody and no one knows about it because I was driving by during the campaign about three months ago, I said, wow, this building’s going up pretty quick.
It’s going to be a nice apartment complex. Wow. And then I looked and it says Netflix parking lot. One. I was like, wait a minute. They booked us due to the pandemic. No, it is what it is. I thought they had an office on sunset. But I guess they want to make it bigger, but Hey, more power to them, but I’m
Mas Moriya: me keep moving on to what about all these studios and places have money for diversity programs, but it didn’t sound like you said they were not using it or they just not using it.
Are they using that funds for something else?
Let me say this.
Darrick Collins: Yeah. Yeah. It’s I’m. I’m cool. I’m just letting you know, as a producer, I just know I was I to say network’s name, but I [00:40:00] was told like yeah, we can create patterns off this money because we have to use it for diversity. We have to use it back in the year. I’m like, wow.
Mas Moriya: Okay.
Darrick Collins: I’m like we’re in what this.
So that there’s money for diversity. I just don’t understand. And I don’t know if people would just ignore it oh, we didn’t find anything. Or the powers that be to block the gate when no one can get in. I don’t know. I’m just at a point now I, we have to be honest about this and we have to be truthful.
We can’t have these continual conversations about diversity inclusion when people, they were creative for that. So why can’t we use that? I don’t get that. I just don’t understand why we’re not using these funds to help people out. There’s a lot of money out here for everybody’s jobs out here, there’s money for that.
Why we not using it? Why don’t we just, while we create programs and say we try it and then actually he did.
Mas Moriya: Yeah. It’s what’s the fear behind it? What do you want to lose? You have this money to use for there. And you’re only going to [00:41:00] improve not only your. The social responsibility that this people are going to see oh, you know what, they’re actually using that money.
It’s doing really well to see the programs working. And you’re going to end, you have people word of mouth. You know what, actually, there are their diversity programs, really great. People of color are going to see the diversity. People are going to say oh, that’s, if it’s working, they’re going to say it’s working.
And so then people are going to like them more because they’re doing better and they’re doing more for the community, but by not doing it, they’re not helping themselves. It is not. No.
Alex Christian: Yeah. It seems, that seems pretty backwards. If you’re going to do that and improve diversity, aren’t you, then from a money standpoint, aren’t you then touching on different markets.
Doesn’t that deal to more people and then thus get you more money. I don’t understand what the hang
Mas Moriya: up is
Darrick Collins: and it gets you more. It gives you more voices and more and more eyeballs. No, maybe they say Hey, this do this project. Let’s focus it. And [00:42:00] let’s put it this focus on the Japan and the China market, and this is take it there and see whatever.
Cause I know they have, I’m sure they have a rep there and Netflix somewhere in Asia, come on by now. I’m sure they do somewhere. They could do a film and it made me like cross-market where make it, Hey, let’s make it. American is also making Amy this way. She can make more money. Come on now.
You could, you can flip it a little bit if you really want to but closing the door and the locking it and not let anybody sleep through that stuff.
Mas Moriya: You guys you’re totally right. And I always advocate for language justice. Like the thing about, especially the Asian culture, there’s so many different languages that you can’t just keep it in English.
And I it’s great for me I’m I only know English, but there are, so there are over 315, 350 languages in America alone. Cause we’re this melting pot and to think about if you had each one, each movie at least subtitle in every language you’d have a better reception because [00:43:00] people would understand it.
But also Netflix does such a great job with their dubbing. Things like money heist did so well because it was shot in Spain or something like that. And they dubbed everything for every language or many languages and everybody got to see it. And so then you’d be able to watch it and being something like we talked about this earlier.
Sometimes I just get, I can’t, I don’t want to read, but at the same time, if I’m multitasking, if I’m. I’m doing some work on the internet. Something that doesn’t, I can just have TV on the background. Why not? Because I can’t read subtitles and watch a movie if I’m working. But if I have a movie or a TV show, that’s in English dubbed and I can work, I’m still technically watching it and they’re getting my views.
So why wouldn’t you, it’s an extra thing to have. It’s just wild. Yeah. And yeah, I think this has been a great conversation so far, so thank you. That the diversity programs definitely need to see, I want to [00:44:00] know where that money’s going, because if that’s you’re totally right. Yeah.
Darrick Collins: We gotta, I think we were texting now.
We were we’re Cindy’s imaged messages on IgE at one point. So I think we gotta continue that conversation. I think my my link is in my bio, but I think we’re texting at one point where is that money going? Who’s using it. Why not use, I waive it? I’m not supposed to say this, but I really don’t care at this point.
But I was told by a Fox executive, he told me that, look, we have 200 scripts that come
Mas Moriya: in.
Darrick Collins: He said, we have to shoot. We have two new scripts to get down to 120 to 60, 60 pallets have to be shot. So think about that 60 at, to be shot. Do you want to take maybe 10 to 12, maybe 12, 10 to 15 at the most, but think about the 60 pilots that has to be shot.
And then you’re going to go and take [00:45:00] what maybe 15, 20% of it. So
Mas Moriya: I don’t think I’m talking
Darrick Collins: too much, but I’m just like, I’m at that point, I don’t care. Cause I’m not, I’m just done. Like we got to stop this madness. This
Mas Moriya: is ridiculous. I would totally agree. And I would say we don’t need the 60 pilots that five or 10 of them are gonna make it or whatever, and that’s 60, that’s probably per studio. It’s not even the whole industry. No, that’s that’s perfect.
Darrick Collins: Yeah. So I would think about that 60 pilots. Just think about this. I’m thinking about, 30 pilots. Like really that’s a lot of money and you know how much a pilot is to call.
I know you guys, I’ll probably for actual drama, just a pilot. I think power was at 2.5, 5 million
Mas Moriya: episode.
Darrick Collins: Yeah. I’ve seen some blood, so just imagine that 30 to 40 times that [00:46:00] has to be spent there. Oh.
Mas Moriya: And they don’t even, they might take some of those. They might even not air them. All that kind of stuff.
It’s just it’s just throwing away money and just, you could be using it for diversity programs for varsity shows. Like just hire some new staff. There’s there’s so many different ways.
Darrick Collins: That’s what the, you do want when shows the council and you see a show from out of the blue, I said, Missy, So we showed the council.
You’re like, wow, I’ve never heard any prep to this. So you started just came out of the blue. What happened is shot it. And it had, they had to say we’re gonna just, we’re gonna just keep it going. We got two episodes already to pilot episode two. We’ll keep it going, but get it production tomorrow.
That’s what happened. It’s crazy, there’s so much money just spent and think about this. Not really their money’s to advertise its money. It’s a, Coca-Cola, Pepsi’s giving them, oh, here’s $40 million for our advertisement for the, for this season. Oh, we need 60 million from Tai.[00:47:00]
It’s just, it’s bad.
Alex Christian: That’s so wild and I’m really glad that you came up to speak and brought up the budget for diversity and the fact. It’s barely being used. And at the end of the day, I have to go and have dinner soon. But at the end of the day, it does beg the question, why is there a disconnect?
Why isn’t it being used? What is the key here? Is it that we need to create our own, movies with strong Asian leads that then garner interest in having Asians as leads in those movies, like create a a mainstream sort of push or what I mean, I just, that really does beg the question in my mind.
Why is it not, why is it not being used if there is that budget for it, other than greet, how do we garner an interest from the public? Because I’m a former finance guy before I did acting full-time I was working in finance for seven years, but it, it does beg the question, how do we get every button from social media [00:48:00] to our, I dunno, whatever, how do we get the social push towards Asia?
Because we can affect the financial markets. We can create crypto, we can affect gain, stop. We can do this too. How do we do it? That’s what I am wondering at the
Mas Moriya: end of the day, I want to know money where’s that money being moved towards where and what could be most spent on. My thing is all like, going back to like marketing is how does it get pushed out?
I do know a buddy who’s creating a new streaming platform for Asian-Americans. I think I’ve seen the demo. I seen the September shows that he’s got our podcasts got picked up through them. That’s why I know them, but I know I can’t share that information. They did post that. They posted a little thing and it didn’t go so well.
And the brand was totally off. But the idea was perfect. Idea is perfect. It’s just, this needs some work. But yeah, it’s what I love about it is what they’re trying to build is they had [00:49:00] new documentaries podcasts that are like, I’ve never heard of them, but they’re Asian and LGBTQ and all these different things of like, all include super inclusive of different things.
They had a a pilot, but I don’t even want to give it away. But what I, I think that’s that kind of thing is important because, if Netflix and HBO and all these places, it’s not going to really take it by the hand and really push for these, we have to do it ourselves. And I think that’s fine.
And I think that’s what we have to do is not what we should have had to do. I don’t know what should have anyways had to do. Yeah. As diverse people, but. At the same time by doing that, we’re creating something that we’re interested in. I even told them this is something that I would be on every day.
I get Netflix Hulu, if this continuing to put out new content on time, this is what I would watch. And I think that’s part of the thing that we can build as a as a community is like supporting that. And we don’t have to, I, again I’m always up for the person that you don’t [00:50:00] have to support just for the support.
If you don’t like it, you don’t like it. Some people don’t didn’t like a house of hoe or the bling empire stuff like that. I’ll Andrew Lincoln park. That was a lot of fun. You can always be critical about things. I really fucking hated Milan. The new one was terrible and they just did terrible.
I did not say it because I just this is no, they had all white creators making this. And it was a whole thing. And just casting heroin was just some of the thing we’re trying to police. And but like somebody would tell me like you should pay for it because it puts them putting the money into creating and showing Disney that we want Asian films.
And so they could do well and I get it, but there, when you do it wrong, it’s like you tell them, you’re putting money into the project saying, Hey look, you did it well. So we create that. And when you recreate that, you have to use the same people, which is going to be more white. That’s the problem. So it’s when we start to create our, for ourselves, we don’t have these debacles that have issues [00:51:00] with white Washington issues.
But we can what we can do is build them, support them go watch them, promote them, and then the money from the studios, they definitely need the marketing thing. Like that needs to be on billboards. Commercials really cut high quality trailers. Not even just like toys, but go to, go to your restaurants and put stuff there and your Asian restaurants, but support the community by putting the marketing money back into the community while doing that, you create the buzz, create the story get the directors to go, do panels and stuff like that.
There’s ways to do this. It’s every other, it’s like the other models of all the other rest of Hollywood. But by them not having enough money to do it, like that’s always, the issue comes down to the money. Because, putting together panels, putting together podcasts and marketing trails, all that costs money.
And one of the things I heard from another place they had created a film. Is it famous? Generally it’s a famous film that we, most of us know it would cost you $50,000, but then the marketing [00:52:00] for it, even when they asked to go do some marketing, they wouldn’t charge them another $50,000.
Like we made it for 50,000. What makes you think we can even give you another $50,000? We just don’t have that. So that’s a problem. So with all the, again, when we talked about earlier is saying, we there’s so many films that we don’t know about. And part of the issue is that they never had any marketing.
They never had his studio, push it out there and say, go watch this. Or even make it available. Most of the stuff, I actually look a lot. Yeah. I don’t, I haven’t done it in a while, but when I went, when we started strong Asian lead, we started every shaming platform for Asian American and Asian dash American.
And I remember Netflix only had one. It was, I think it was the bad rap with Aquafina. And if you put in Asian American, you only, you much only got of K dramas and a ma other Asian films. That’s not Asian-American I think the only good one that had it was maybe. [00:53:00] Hulu. They might have three at the time.
And that was like a whole year ago. So I’d love to see where, how it’s grown since then. I know canopy has a lot, I will say that. So I’ll give him that. But that’s the thing is like the it’s not showing up, but if you actually go to Amazon I know they have the, they’re the biggest one. Cause you can find a lot of films, but also I just feel like they have a wider selection because you can pay for the paper streaming as well.
You can’t really rent on Netflix or anything like that. But if you go, if you look at Amazon’s kind of catalogs, you can look through all their films, a lot of the Asian American films, or even the Asian films you have to pay for. And I think that’s another part of the problem too. Like even yellow rose by Diane progress.
She has it on Amazon, but you have to pay for it now it’s only four bucks or whatever, but, I don’t know if it’s just an Asian thing, but I was like, I don’t even want to pay four bucks. I already paid for all the streaming services. I should just watch someone of those it’s technically free.
So it’s they need to just put them on the streaming platform. [00:54:00] Cause I would go watch that. I would immediately go watch it because it’s there, it’s available. It’s it doesn’t cost any extra to me. I also tell this with a problem with Disney plus was that they’ve started to fix it recently.
I don’t know if they fixed it or what they saw, but most of their stuff was starting to become free or premium. And so their first film that they put on a premium was moving. And you’ve had to pay $30 to watch it once a week for whatever. And that was ridiculous. And then they made right. And then they made Seoul was free and I’m like, okay.
And then they had another film that was Asian. I think it was Asian. And then he also had to pay for that. I forgot what it was now, but that made me mad. It was like, you’re making us pay more for Asian films, even in the GAM is on. So they don’t want to pick it up and stream it for free. You have to go pay [00:55:00] for more.
And because there’s a barrier of payment, you won’t go. There’s just a level of people who won’t go. Because it’s just the idea of having to pay for more. So I think that’s also a huge barrier for people to go watch more films. And because you can pay to put your film on Netflix doesn’t mean anybody’s going to watch it.
If they’re not going to put it up at the top. And if they’re not going to pay to put a top or whatever, that’s, it’s just the whole thing. Like I’m glad paper tigers. I made it up and had things like a top five or something like that, which was great. I really only heard it through word of mouth.
I didn’t see Netflix put any advertisements for it. I didn’t see any headline banners, when they play the ad there, the previews at the top. I didn’t see anything like that. So that as an issue, same with like warrior on HBO, max, most people didn’t know. Like most people didn’t know about at all.
It’s Bruce Lee’s storytelling, Bruce Lee’s daughter. Who’s an executive producer, Justin Lin’s and executive producer. He was on for two seasons on [00:56:00] Cinemax. Yeah. Who knows Cinemax. So nobody knew about that. I watched it when it came out and it was like fine, but I only had the seven day trial and didn’t want to pay for it.
So I was like, oh, I’ll just watch it later. But then HBO, max pick picked it up and then it was going to be dropped like the third season wasn’t going to be renewed and no one was doing any marketing behind it. And nobody knew about it. Both seasons were up and nobody knew about it. And it’s a fucking great series.
It’s just like 1918, 1880s, 1870s, Chinatown, San Francisco, bad-ass martial arts gang wars, and just a brilliant storyline and including the Chinese exclusion act. Especially if it’s Bruce Lee, like that’s such an easy marketing tool. Why wouldn’t you have that? I actually had to go call people at Warner media and just say Hey, what’s up with this film?
Why aren’t we, why is it going to be dropped for third season? And why hasn’t it been picked up and emotional talking about it? And she actually was like, I [00:57:00] haven’t even heard about it. What happened? Let me go find some things. And then she went to go find out, Hey, she found out I slipped through the crack through the merger, but that shouldn’t have happened because no one was thinking about it.
And I think in a part of the, no one was thinking about it. I says, there’s not enough representation within the office and the and within the studio system, right? If there’s an Asian in there really focusing on Asian films and Asian content with other Asians to help support that person, we wouldn’t have had that.
And for me, that’s what Hollywood gets doesn’t understand. Doesn’t get right. Is that you can’t just add one Asian and say, we’re good because when you add that one Asian in there, not only does it become a representation burnout, that person has to then not only support Asian films, which they can, but everybody else around them is not.
So they have to help them as well. Because when we have other diversity programs, you’re trying to help other diversity programs, but they’re not trying to help you like that. Steven Yeun [00:58:00] quote diversity in Asian-American is like when you’re trying to help everybody else, but nobody thinks about you.
That’s what I see as a problem. I should have.
Alex Christian: Wow. That’s a no. That’s all incredibly insightful and I was just quietly absorbing everything that you were saying. So it’s this sort of incredibly valid and
Mas Moriya: really great man. That’s why we got to change things, but we’ll kinda start wrapping things up here in a small room.
And I had some, I think part of the issue, why it says not issue, but it’s a small room. Cause I had to use my AFN account to get on my phone, but then it didn’t open the room, but ping all my friends, whatever. We haven’t done a clubhouse in a while. We used to do like weekly. He was doing like twice a week in the beginning, but I just got burned out.
I’m sure. It’s a lot to go back into this, so we’ll be here. We’re going to try to be here every Wednesday at around the same time. I don’t know, I have three o’clock on my calendar. I think six o’clock is a good time for us. We might jump around and see what works but we’ll be back and we also have this recording.
So if anybody wants to share with your [00:59:00] friends you thought this was insightful, please share with them. I think for the first, next couple of weeks, we’ll have it on the podcast. So you can go to strong Asian lead on any of your podcasts players. We’ll all, hopefully I’ll have it up by like tomorrow ish.
But then eventually we’re going to have the Asian film network. And we’ll have a whole discussion clubhouse discussion with that in a few weeks when we open up the beta. But that, I hope that will be useful. Cause the thing we want to do is really just build a directory. I just have so many.
God email me and call me all the time. Hey, I need to find a Asian director or an Asian DP. I had an interview with this DP and he was a white dude. And when he was rambling and talking, he was like, he stopped for a moment. And he said do I, am I making sense? Do you understand me? Am I speaking Chinese?
And I just dropped my fucking mouth. I was like, you said that to a Chinese woman who was making a story about Chinese being racist against Chinese, Asian people. She’s I can’t [01:00:00] tell. I’m like, Nope. So I can need it. The thing is, but right now you have to eat the only word of mouth. So it’s like a Ray, but the thing is, we want to be able to find.
People in different cities. We want to be able to categorize people. If you want to search for someone who is mung Vietnamese, someone who has a story of you, where you’re a director, I say, you’re the music director. Who’s writing a story around Vietnamese refugees. You’re going to want to find people who are also Vietnamese refugees.
So if you want to find a writer who has that background and you can’t search that right now, there’s no platform that lets you do that in most directories. If you put up your name, once you submit your name you don’t get to add you can’t change it if it’s manual. So you have to go email somebody to help you change that.
And if they’re too busy, they’re not going to, they’re not gonna be able to help you. So you want to update your website, update your bio, any of that kind of stuff. That’s not going to happen. Yeah, and it might be one of the first to do it in this way. And it’s a whole platform. It’s [01:01:00] it’s got its own filter media feed.
We’re going to have a casting feed. If you have job posting, all that kind of stuff and you can message people through there. It’s like LinkedIn meets staff me up means stage 32, but for Asians. And I hope that this will be a model that other communities can also bring up. Cause I don’t want to pick over anybody else’s community.
But I think this is it’s a useful, it can be useful tool if you’re trying to find someone and let’s just say the land, neck, film network, right? You want to find someone who’s a Honduran, someone who’s Guatemalan. Yeah. Someone who is all that kind of stuff is there’s so much to be specific about, but then also have conversations around, across ethnic cross.
Acting something like Philippon,
Mas Moriya: was a huge cross, I think acting back in the thirties. He’s one of the first Korean American actor who played every Asian every, but most of the major east Asian men. So he’s played Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, all these stuff in different movies, you know him better than I, but nowadays we’re having the [01:02:00] conversation about, okay can someone, who’s not Japanese.
That role are they, should they be allowed to, is that something we want to condone? Because if someone who is, let’s say it’s a Laotian role, you put someone who’s Chinese and they’re, you’re taking away the opportunity for someone who’s a Laotian. Who’s actually motion, hang hope. That’s right. Wow. Do you have that role?
So what is the conversation behind that? Because then now they’re already marginalized and not getting enough opportunities. You’re now taking that away. But then the other Asian, doesn’t the Chinese person who has that, who wanted to go out for that role, still needs a job, but what’s the conversation about that even, or I’m mixed race.
I’m half. Mixed white and Japanese American, am I allowed to only go out for biracial roles or can I’m east Asian presenting? Can I go off of those roles or can I only golfer biracial worlds, but there’s no non-law biracial roles stories. So how would that even work? [01:03:00] These are the conversations we want to bring up.
And then also we want to be able to build our stories around that. Even places like our partners mixed Asian media is a great place to find mixed Asian people and have that conversation. There’s a lot of stuff going on. I can talk all day and I hope that, in the future we’ll have more, yes.
On the colon palace. We’re definitely having a panel next Thursday on the 19th. That’s going to be our with our with mixed Asian media, with a lot of other mixed Asian people documented mixed Asian problems. Probably we’ll still have a conversation on Wednesday just to open another open form for us to talk about different issues, see what we can start to build and change things.
Yeah. And so thank you both Alex and Derek for having this conversation with me Joan and bringing up really great points. This has been great. Thank you.
Alex Christian: Absolutely. Thank you for having me. And honestly thank you for making this group because as soon as I saw, it’s not all this strong usually, it’s pretty self-explanatory right. Like I always try and go off [01:04:00] the lead rules to set that precedent for us. And so it was it’s really fantastic to be here and I’m in a monitor that you
Mas Moriya: have.
And if anybody else on the audience wants to raise their hand real quick and excuse me, jump in, continue the conversation we will do. So I know Amy came back in the room but as always, we’ll start to close out and Derek, thank you so much for bringing up good points like dude, and you had some insights that I just never heard of and now I’m even more mad, but no, this is, this has been a really great, so great.
Thanks. Thanks for coming in. Oh, Amy showed up. Hey.
Amy Z Chan: Hi, I’m sorry. Keep popping it out. It’s happening right around dinner. I’m trying to get my kids food and everything. So I have
Mas Moriya: no. Don’t be apologetic for feeding your kids. Please feed them, keeping you going. Yeah, no, he jumped off the stage and you’ve heard some of the conversation.
How would you like to add to the conversation or bring up a new topic? We’ll keep the remote and I definitely I’ll close around eight o’clock, let’s keep it going. What are the, what [01:05:00] do you want to bring into the table today?
Upendo William: Oh,
Amy Z Chan: I don’t know what you guys were just recently talking about cause I’ve been gone, but I was listening earlier about, like I’m trying to, I guess the kind of content that Hollywood is like mining for in terms of.
Sorry, I’m trying to figure out how I’m trying to phrase this. So I’m in the publishing world, right? So what I have been hearing from like other AAPI writers is that in publishing, they are mining. Like they are looking for more AAPI content in terms of books, because if the book has a proven audience, then it’s easier obviously to sell to Hollywood.
Upendo William: there are people who are,
Amy Z Chan: so I actually know of a couple of writers who have books that are coming out, that the rights were already picked up by Netflix, even before the books like came out. I don’t know if I can actually even say who they are or what the books are, but it was very clear to me that there was.
From the publisher’s point of view, there is like a demand for API [01:06:00] content. So I dunno, I guess I just want to say, I feel like it’s coming, the
Mas Moriya: roles are coming. I agree. I do think the roles are coming. Not only because like you just said that people want to pick up the books and I think that’s great.
I think that’s where it should start and can start. I’ve definitely I’m inspired and write from I’m not trying to recreate the books, but there’s a whole series of books that I’m trying to I’m building and basing them off of because there is a huge audience for these books and then they keep coming out.
So I’m like, okay, so someone’s missing something. But I also have seen if you go an IMDV probe, anyone’s got the account and, minor feelings is being produced. The, not the stranger housekeeper, you’re feeding the name the sympathizer there is a interior Chinatown, like there’s a bunch of books, they’re all based on books.
And I think that’s a great point coming from, and I think that’s another great thing to think about is that look for the writers find people who are writing books and see what they’re doing because books and books [01:07:00] are really great places for inspiration, but that’s when you have that background, like you just said, people want to build on that IEP.
That’s already there, especially if the book is already being. It’s not being self-published, but broadly being published by somebody else. That means they’re being paid to write that book, which means somebody’s backing them through money. And I think that’s a great indication that we should build those stories and because the story is being built they easily adaptable into movies and television.
I do see those, the industry has changed even within the past year. Cause I’ve seen what’s coming up and even just noticing, watching how people are. Some of it seems responsive and no I’m predatory, just like.
I’m forgetting words today. It’s been a long day. Just self would just fake. But some of it’s real and I think that’s the change that we’re starting to see. Cause we want more films we’re asking for them, we’re demanding them [01:08:00] and we’re not gonna let it slide. So we never got back to the whitewashing question here, we don’t want to see that happen anymore.
We’re not going to really stand for it. I think even Scarlett Johannson doing ghost and shell was one thing. I think the reason why they did that is to get the overseas market. Cause like Japan didn’t care. They actually really wanted Scarlett Johannson. Like she’s beautiful and all that stuff. And that’s what, that’s their ideals.
But that idea was put on them because of white colonialism. Whereas here, when we’re talking, when we talk about Asian-American representation and Colonizing our stories basically. We are, we just can’t stand it anymore because that’s not only taking away stories from us, but the people who are representing them, aren’t going to add anything more.
And something that, publishing in books, do it goes into more depth about what these characters are thinking about, right? Because we’re not just thinking about what’s on the screen. Cause we can’t always see what they’re thinking, but in books we can see about their decision-making or some background in there.
I think [01:09:00] that’s a really it’s a really great place to look at for films. And as we start to see the industry change, you’ll start seeing more books, either books being made out of it and coming out, but then also more films and TV series being based off books because they’re already there, the contents already there.
And I think that’s really good.
Amy Z Chan: Yeah. I think there’s, there was a statistic somewhere. I saw that something like 50% of all academy award winners are moving, movies are based on books. It makes sense to me because if you’re building a property on a book, like the, you already have an existing fan base that there’s a fan base.
Yeah I do think the pandemic has changed things. And I think honestly the rise in viewership of honestly, I know you don’t listen to BTS, but the rise in BDS and the rise in the viewership of K dramas, I think has actually opened the door for a lot of people, for, in terms of creating this kind of content and create, being able to create
Mas Moriya: these [01:10:00] roles, you opened up a lot of doors for music and for marketing, like what Asian has ever been on at McDonald’s meal.
It’s ridiculous, but real that happened. And so I think that’s really important. Important to see in the changes. But let’s more onto our new guest is who Pendo
nice to meet you. How are you doing today? Yes,
Upendo William: it’s so Pendo, I’m doing great. Nice to meet you all too. And I’ve really enjoyed the different things I’ve heard in the room. And I guess one thing I’d like to say is that I’ve noticed that, okay. Netflix has, Netflix has a lot of, I would say like Asian con earlier on about how even this idea of what is Asian is seen as a monolith and.
I can relate to that to a certain degree [01:11:00] because when people talk about, oh, this is an African movie, they’re not thinking, oh, Africa has thousands of languages and over 50 countries. So those are some of the things that came to mind as you were talking about, even the diversity within Asia, let’s say south Asia, east Asia and everything else.
So I guess I just wanted to say that my hope is that as more awareness is raised about the diversity within Asia, Asian-American community and Pacific Islander community. My hope is also that the storylines will carry that level of diversity because I think sometimes. They, the media likes to reserve certain roles and say, okay, this is our idea of an Asian American man or our idea of an Asian American woman and things of that sort.
And I just, I find that problematic and I work with a lot of young students. They’re like teenagers, and we talk about [01:12:00] this stuff sometimes, and it’s amazing how, they see it so clearly, and they don’t like it, but they don’t always know what to do. As an English teacher I like to encourage them to be proud of their identity and to use their voices, to share their stories.
Because as you all were saying earlier on that could turn into a book and then the books can drive the movies. That is way more balanced than what we see out there. So that’s just a little of what I wanted to share. Thank
Mas Moriya: you for sharing. Yeah. I think that’s it’s so relevant and so necessary. Yeah.
Are all communities are diverse in so many different ways and not only culturally, but every, in every identity, people who are maybe native American who are also disabled in certain ways or LGBQ TQ or two spirited, there’s so many different ways that the whole world is just in-depth and every person is different.
So why would anybody think that, it’s okay to say, this is what we think of these things. And this is how we want [01:13:00] to portray them in a storyline because that’s not fair. And it’s that’s just here’s the zoo. This is what a tiger looks like. And this is how a tiger acts. But that’s not what a tiger does is sit around and do stuff and go chase chases and has a family.
And, and it makes decisions not just go around in a cage. And this is, given dead rabbits and that’s just not how it works. So no, and our culture, Asian culture. And I think that’s the other thing too, is like Asian, the word, Asian American, the term Asian American came in the sixties because everybody was still either Oriental back then or separated within their communities who, Korean, Korean Americans, Japanese Americans, all that kind of stuff.
So Asian American only, it only been around for 50, 70 years, 50, 60 years. And even the term Asian, right? Nobody in Asia calls themselves Asian they’re Korean or Japanese, or they’re, Singaporean, all that stuff. So what does, Asian is definitely a very American word. What are we doing about [01:14:00] that?
Not even American word, but yeah. Yeah, it’s a global term coming from Asia, but then that also opens up a lot of different doors because Asian American, what does that mean? Cause a United States is not just America. There’s north America and south America. So what are we talking about when it’s Asian-American but then also the competition is still going on.
I’m still learning stuff too. Like the middle east my friend, like she points out, it’s in the middle east is middle of what? The east like technically the middle east and all the countries are in Asia. They’re the Southwest Asian countries. So do, or what’s the conversation around Asians, including the Southwest Asians as a part of our culture, but also do Southwest Asians want to be considered Asian.
And I think that’s all these new conversations are still happening. It’s still growing. The society is still growing around what these, what being Asian means. And so Hollywood needs to have the [01:15:00] responsibility to reflect that and to say, who gets to tell those stories? So things are, it’s just an ongoing conversation that happens in every culture, in every community, because that’s, it’s just not happening.
Yeah. Thank you. Thank you for bringing that up.
Upendo William: Okay. You’re welcome. And you hit so many relevant points. There are definitely so many intersections and that is also very important to highlight. And it’s definitely an ongoing process for me, as I’m learning more about the terms and where they came from and what it means and all of that.
And, as you were just talking, it made me think about how, in a way the pen is mightier than the sword, because storytelling or stories play a very important role in the way that. People see themselves. And unfortunately, sometimes the stories can be used for bad reasons, but on, on the brighter end with more of a presentation, I believe those stories created [01:16:00] can help to foster more love and respect.
So that’s just all I wanted to say. Thank you again.
Mas Moriya: That’s what we’re looking for. We’re not even looking for at the end of the day, it’s, diversity on the screen and different diversity and background, but really at the end, the. It is about the respect, right? It’s the respect that we want to have with ourselves and not only for ourselves cause we want to we, because I think we talked about earlier is that I didn’t have a lot of respect for myself.
And even some of my people, I had a lot of internalized racism against Asian people because I didn’t want to be Asian. So that was a part of the media, but then other people just have a see as different. We don’t want that either. So at the end of the day, it really comes down to the respect that we want as people, but Hollywood in the visual screen, in the story.
And the pen is mightier. Th that’s what becomes and affects society. So I think it’s a really good point. Yeah. To our next, a new speaker today is it Vero.
Vero Nica: Hi. [01:17:00] Hello. It’s my first time here in in the room, the application actually I’m from Argentina and I’m like Japanese Argentinian. So for me, it’s very interesting what you are mentioning because also for us, it’s we look at, eh, let’s say American or Hollywood movies or serious, and it’s the closer, the closest we have to have represent a representation.
Eh, because of course we always talk about Asian Americans and what you were saying before was like, okay, then Asian Americans covers north America, central America, south America. And so on. I think that’s an interesting point because all of us like Asian descendants or Asians mixed raced in another countries outside of America or the U [01:18:00] S eh, it’s also we are represented by the least of American shows.
So that’s what I wanted to share also. So I, eh, now having all these, we have access in Netflix to a lot of like Korean dramas or in another platforms, like a Rakuten or Vicky. Yeah. And that’s the only way we get a chance to be represented, not as specific, like a hundred percent Asians, but it’s the closest also we have.
And probably also I have many friends that are Asians around the world and not again, not a hundred percent, but mostly like myself, like Argentinian, eh, Japanese. So that’s another case. No,
Mas Moriya: thank you. Yeah. That’s the thing that the other conversation that we don’t have is not just Asian [01:19:00] American, but Asian, Asian, diaspora, everybody in the world because we’re all in, we’re in every different country.
I’m a huge in like history in his Historian just in, especially with the Japanese community. But like just looking at migration patterns and see where people went and moved. I just heard a great story about a lot of Chinese and the haka region went to Jamaica and I thought that was a really fascinating story to hear how many people went and had, mixed race kids and mixed race families double No double nationalities and all of these different things and growing up in so many different languages and cultures.
But like even the Japanese a lot of late 18 hundreds, they first went in went through Hawaii first and then went to the west coast of America. That was a lot of Japanese went into. Peru and Mexico, excuse me, around the same time. And and I, as people just keep growing and you go to different places, of course.
I would love to know when Japanese in [01:20:00] Japanese, in Argentina, Argentina migrated there as well, but some people don’t know people hear about the Japanese incarceration camps also known as the interment. We don’t call the intermittent cause that’s a euphemism it’s America’s need for an ism for nice things.
But the Japanese in Peru were also incarcerated into camps, but not only incarcerated, they were kidnapped by the American government and put into camps. They were stripped of their Peruvian identities made enemy aliens put into incarceration in interment camps. There is a difference in America.
And then when the war was ended, they were not allowed to be back in prison. And they were not American citizens, so it was a whole debacle and they ended up having a America and eventually gave them citizenship to stay there because they took them. They didn’t want to go to back to Japan. That’s not their hometown home country.
I’d never been there. So you couldn’t just deport them there. So it was such a debacle, but to hear something like that just makes me think about how much [01:21:00] history we don’t know and how many countries in places that Asian people are in that have history there and what happened because other places were also racist.
Like it just, it’s just, that’s a global thing. It’s colorism, Japan has its own cultures yeah, I think we need more stories like in like yours, if you’re a writer and storyteller yourself Farrow these are the stories we need to hear and I think that’s really important.
So thank you for coming up.
I think close out pretty soon if anyone else has most to raise their hand and ping people in. That’s great. If anyone else on the stage still wants to continue the conversation with something I’m down to keep it open for another 20 minutes or so, but otherwise I’d love to wrap it up and with any way anybody has any last words.
And just any other last thoughts, please share them. We’ll go back to Derek. Derek, do you have any parting thoughts with us?
I can say man. Hey,
Darrick Collins: we just got to keep it going. Keep [01:22:00] fighting, keep swinging.
Mas Moriya: And if those doors aren’t there, we’re going to build those doors, then knock them down,
build those doors brick by brick. We will all build them together as as a global people. And that’s the thing, right? any last words for us.
Upendo William: So I guess what I’ll say is there is a Chinese quote that I bet most of you have heard of it, but it just came to mind a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. So that’s what I’d like to end with as I think about this conversation and what is in the works. I choose to look at it in the most positive light as I reflect
Mas Moriya: on that.
Okay. Has that quoted you on time? Thank you for that reminder. That’s really good. Vero, any last words?[01:23:00]
Vero Nica: No. That
Mas Moriya: thank you. And I think it’s a good way to interpret it. So thanks again, everybody for coming into our club and room today, I can always find this on a strong Asian lead, either on the podcasts and your socials, all that kind of stuff. And as you see, we have the Asian film network, so that will be opening up in a few in a couple of weeks.
You can come and do that, but there’s nothing on it stuff now. So you follow it when it’s ready, but it doesn’t matter. But again, thank you. My name is David and we’re closing out you have everybody have a great night, great week. Take care.
Vero Nica: Thanks.
Darrick Collins: Take care. Thank you too.
Mas Moriya: Sorry if you’re still here. Thank you. And thank you for staying in Chelsea and Christina. I’m actually just trying to figure out how this changes. Stop.