Children of Invention, a feature film written and directed by Columbia University alumnus Tze Chun (CC '02, Film Studies major), will screen as the centerpiece of the 32nd Asian American International Film Festival, the longest-running Asian American film festival in the United States, in the film's New York premiere. The screening will be held at the School of Visual Arts Theatre in Chelsea on Saturday, July 25.
The film was shot in New York, and had its world premiere at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival in January. It recently won Grand Jury Prizes for Best Narrative Feature at the Independent Film Festival Boston, Newport Film Festival, and the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, as well as Special Jury Prizes at the Sarasota, Nashville, and San Francisco International Asian American Film Festivals.
In Children of Invention, two young children living outside Boston are left to fend for themselves when their hardworking mother becomes embroiled in a pyramid scheme and disappears. The film is Chun's debut feature and is loosely based on his short film Windowbreaker, which screened at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival and which earned Chun a spot on Filmmaker magazine's annual "25 New Faces of Independent Film" list.
The film takes inspiration from Chun's own childhood in Boston's suburbs. "When I was little, my sister and I followed my mother to countless pyramid seminars. The film is a personal story about the world I grew up in–a subculture of immigrant and working class Americans trying to get rich quick in order to get themselves out of a financial hole. I didn't foresee the current financial crisis, but with the economy the way it is now, it seems like everyone's living through some version of what the family in the film goes through," Chun said.
The film was shot by Columbia University School of the Arts Film Program alumnus Chris Teague (Film '06), who has shot several films that have screened at Sundance and other major festivals; and edited by Columbia University alumna Anna Boden (CC '02, Film Studies major), who co-wrote/directed, produced, and edited the films Half Nelson and, most recently, the acclaimed Sugar.
Chun and other cast and crew will be in attendance at the AAIFF screening on Saturday, July 25 at 7:45 p.m., and there will be a Q&A after the screening. Ticket price ($15) also includes admission to after-party at 310 Lounge (310 Bowery, New York)
Children of Invention at Asian American International Film Festival (AAIFF)
Saturday, July 25, 7:45 p.m.
SVA Theater, 333 West 23rd Street, New York
To buy tickets: https://www.ovationtix.com/trs/pe/7417645
For more information on the film:
For film trailer: