VINCENT WHO? (2009, 40 minutes) A film by Asian Pacific Americans for Progress
In 1982, Vincent Chin was murdered in Detroit by two white autoworkers at the height of anti-Japanese sentiments. For the first time, Asian Americans around the country galvanized to form a real community and movement.
This documentary, inspired by a series of town halls organized by Asian Pacific Americans for Progress on the 25th anniversary of the case, features interviews with the key players at the time, as well as a whole new generation of activists. “Vincent Who?” asks how far Asian Americans have come since then and how far we have yet to go.
Featured interviews include: Helen Zia (lead activist during the Chin trial), Renee Tajima Pena (director, “Who Killed Vincent Chin?”), Stewart Kwoh (Executive Director, Asian Pacific American Legal Center), Lisa Ling (journalist), Sumi Pendakur (Univ. of Southern California), Dale Minami (civic rights attorney), Doua Thor (Executive Director, Southeast Asian Resource Action Center), and a group of five diverse young APA activists whose lives were impacted by Vincent Chin.
Producer and co-director Curtis Chin (featured in the documentary) is an award-winning writer and producer who has worked for ABC, NBC, Disney Channel and more. As a community activist, he co-founded the Asian American Writers Workshop and Asian Pacific Americans for Progress. In 2008, he served on Barack Obama’s Asian American Leadership Council where he participated in helping the campaign reach out to the AAPI community.
meet producer curtis chin
What was the motivation behind the creation of Vincent Who?
There were two goals for making the film. One was to remember a very important case to many members of our community. The second was to discuss how our community could move forward.
What audiences have seen the film and what kind of response have you received?
We have toured to over 80 colleges, libraries and law firms so far. About 75% of have been AAPI groups. The other 25% have been either African American groups or multi-ethnic or white classes focused on race.
How would you describe the film?
The film is about empowering the community and thinking of ways to move forward.
Why is this film important to you, our APIA community, and the general public?
Vincent Chin was a family friend and it was important to remember his life and the legacy of his murder. It’s an old cliche, but you really have to learn from the past otherwise we will continue to make the same mistakes.
What projects are APA for Progress currently working on or planning for?
APAP will continue building our national network and developing chapters around the country. It would be great to have one in Denver. We’ll also be heavily involved in the 2010 midterm elections and helping to elect progressive candidates. In terms of video projects, we’re in the early planning stages of our second documentary.
Vincent Who? Spring 2010 Schedule
Jan 25 - Colorado State University
Jan 26 - University of Colorado at Boulder
Jan 27 - University of Denver
Feb 4 - De Anza College
Feb 6 - University of Nevada - Reno
Feb 11 - Stony Brook University
Feb 12 - Rutgers State University
Feb 19 - University of Texas at Austin
Feb 20 - University of Pittsburgh
Feb 23 - Grand Valley State
Feb 24 - University of Kansas
Feb 25 - Wichita State
Feb 26 - Depaul University
Feb 27 - Northwestern University
Feb 28 - Northbrook Public Library (Chicago)
March 1 - University of Wisconsin - Green Bay
March 2 - Marquette University
March 3 - University of Wisconsin - Madison
March 4 - University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
March 5 and 6 - University of Pennsylvania (ECAASU)
March 9 - University of Alabama - Birmingham
March 11 - Orlando
March 12 and 13- APANO (Oregon)
March 17 - Vanderbilt University
March 18 - Austin Peay State University
March 24 - March 31 - Tour through Minnesota
April 6 - William and Jefferson College
April 7 - Lehigh University
April 12: The University of Dayton
April 13: Wittenberg University
April 14: Wright State University
April 14: California State University at Northridge
April 15: Kent State University
April 22 - University of New Hampshire
The DVD will be available in March. To pre-order a copy, visit www.apaforprogress.org/vincent-who-0.