Documentary | 32 minutes | USA 2016
Forever, Chinatown is a story of unknown, self-taught 81-year-old artist Frank Wong who has spent the past four decades recreating his fading memories by building romantic, extraordinarily detailed miniature models of the San Francisco Chinatown rooms of his youth.
This film takes the journey of one individual and maps it to a rapidly changing urban neighborhood from 1940s to present day. A meditation on memory, community, and preserving one’s own legacy, Frank‘s three-dimensional miniature dioramas become rare portals into a historic neighborhood and a window to the artist’s filtered and romanticized memories and emotional struggles. In his bargain with immortality, Frank announces plans to cremate his exquisite works with him upon his death in order to ‘live inside them forever’ in his afterlife.
Produced and Directed by: James Q. Chan
Producer: Corey Tong
Director of Photography: Jeff den Broeder
Editor, Miniature Cinematography: Michael Palmieri
Assistant Editor: Donal Mosher
Original Music: Thomas Lauderdale and Pink Martini
Sound Design: Jeremiah Moore
Associate Producer: Penelope Wong
Researcher: Dorothy Quock
Graphic Design: James DiRito
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American Film Showcase (September 2017-2018)
National Public Television Broadcast May - June 2017 (North America)
Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival *WINNER Jury Award Documentary Short, Best Cinematography*
Camerimage Int'l Film Festival of the Art of Cinematography, Poland *Nominee Best Short Doc*
Austin Asian Film Festival *WINNER Audience Award Best Short Doc*
Boston Asian American Film Festival *WINNER Audience Award Best Short Doc*
Hanoi Cinematheque, Vietnam
Doc Edge (New Zealand) *Nominee Best Short Doc*
Full Frame Documentary Film Festival *World Premiere*
CAAMfest, special work-in-progress screening