Originally known as the “VC Film Festival,” Visual Communication member Joel Quizon mentioned that for this year's event they decided to change the name to the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival” to highlight what the festival was all about. During the closing night award ceremony, director Sarab Neelam's directorial feature film “Ocean of Pearls” swept the awards with two wins. (Above: The filmmakers of The Sensei) HIs first win was for the Grand Jury Prize for Best Narrative Feature Film and also for the Audience Award for. Sarab was definitely floored with his win as he said, “Maybe I should make a film called “Pimpin' Sikh.” He didn't even think that he would win an award.
Neelman's film is based upon Neelam and script writer partner Veerendra Prasad's Sikh experience in America.
For writer Jodi Long, her documentary feature film, “Long Story Short” took home the Audience Award for Documentary Feature Film and received an honorable mention. She shares the award with her director, Christine Choi. Long thanked the audience for choosing the film as an Audience Award. If it wasn't for the audience, she probably wouldn't have done the movie. However, director Christine Choi mentioned to Long that the story of her family on the “Ed Sullivan Show” must be told.
The full list of winners include:
Narrative Feature Films
Grand Jury Prize – “Ocean of Pearls,” directed by Sarab Neelam with screenplay by Veerendra Prasad
Audience Award – “Ocean of Pearls,” directed by Sarab Neelam with screenplay by Veerendra Prasad
Best First Feature Film – “Always Be Boyz,” written and directed by John Kwon
Technical Art Award – “Option 3,” directed by Richard Wong with screenplay by HP Mendoza and Richard Wong
Outstanding Newcomer – “Jimmy Tsai,” in the film “Ping Pong Playa,” directed by Jessica Yu with screenplay by Jimmy Tsai and Jessica Yu
Documentary Feature Films
Grand Jury Prize – “Oh Saigon,” written and directed by Doan Hoang
Audience Award – “Long Story Short,” directed by Christine Choi and wirtten by Jodi Long
Special Jury Prize – “Up The Yangtze,” written and directed by Yung Chang
Honorable Mention – “Long Story Short” directed by Christine Choi and written by Jodi Long
Golden Reel – “Tailor Made: Chinatown's Last Tailor,” directed by Leonard Lee and Marsha Newberry
New Directions/New Voices – “Sweat,” written and directed by Na Hong-Jin
Honorable Mention – “The Postcard,” written and directed by Josh Kim