The Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) has announced its in-person programming for CAAMFest 2023 which will take place from May 11 to 21. This year’s festival will kick off with Lionsgates’s anticipated comedy “Joy Ride,” directed by Adele Lim. Opening night will be held at The Castro Theater in San Francisco on May 11 with a commemoration during the opening night gala. 

“These last few years have deeply altered us and we are only starting to journey towards each other again,” says festival and exhibitions director Thúy Trần. “CAAMFest 2023 is a call to gather so that we may witness each other’s transformations, restore our bonds, and bask in our joys.” 

“Joy Ride” is a comedic story of identity and self-discovery that follows a group of friends that head out on an international adventure. After Audrey’s business trip takes a left turn, she calls for the help of her childhood best friend, Lolo; her college best friend that happens to be a Chinese soap star, Kat; and Lolo’s unique cousin, Deadeye. Their journey highlights how “bonding, friendship, belonging, and wild debauchery [ultimately] reveal the universal truth of what it means to know and love who you are.”

The film stars Ashley Park, Sherry Cola, Stephanie Hsu and Sabrina Wu. Ronny Chieng, Lori Tan Chinn, David Denman, Annie Mumolo, Desmond Chiam, Alexander Hodge and Chris Pang also join the cast,

“As we’ve seen in the latest awards season, Asian American stories resonate with audiences,” says CAAM executive director Stephen Gong. “Some of those stories come from Hollywood, and others originate in communities like the ones we live in here in the Bay Area. That’s why it’s been the mission of our festival for over 40 years to bring the diversity of Asian American narratives to local audiences.” 

“Joy Ride” will be released in theaters on July 7.

American Cinematheque launches PROOF of Concept Film Festival

The American Cinematheque announced its new upcoming film festival, the PROOF film festival, which will celebrate cinema’s next generation, by showcasing the best proof-of-concept films. The Los Angeles festival will take place Oct. 20-22. Submissions are now open here.

PROOF is the industry’s first-ever festival, and will be dedicated to proof-of-concept films to assist filmmakers to bring their concepts to fruition. The festival will host a jury made up of creative executives, managers, agents and filmmakers, who will award four filmmakers at the festival. Those included on the jury include Kyle Bowles, Kristina Cuello, Kate Hagen, Priyanka Kapoor, Sarah Minnie, Yasmin Felice Morris and Kayla Stamps. 

The four winning filmmakers will also receive prizes from the festival’s partners, The Black List, ShotDeck and Panavision. The Black List will provide free script hosting for winners, ShotDeck will provide free yearlong subscriptions to their services and Panavision will provide a $60K camera package for the grand jury award winner. Additionally, the selected filmmakers will receive mentorship workshops and professional development preparation ahead of the festival.