International Film Coming to San Diego: The San Diego Asian Film Festival

By: Mila Pantovich

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Running from Oct. 21 to Oct. 28, “The 11th Annual San Diego Asian Film Festival” is one of the largest Asian and Asian American cinema events in North America. The festival first got its start in 2000 at the University of San Diego, and since has grown into an event that has highlighted and honored over 1,000 independent films from all over the world. Taking place in Mission Valley at the Hazard Center UltraStar Cinema (7510 Hazard Center Drive, San Diego), this year’s festival will include over 140 movie screenings from 20 different countries, and will be attended by over 100 filmmakers and actors, including John Cho (“Harold and Kumar” and “Star Trek”), Danny Pudi (“Community”), Ellen Wong (“Scott Pilgrim VS The World”), and Daniel Dae Kim (“Lost”). With panels, workshops, live music, and the opportunity to meet filmmakers, “The San Diego Asian Film Festival” is the perfect chance for you to be adventurous and see some films that maybe you wouldn’t normally try out.

Kicking off the festival will be the West Coast premiere of the ambitious martial arts film “Legend of the Fist,” by filmmaker Andrew Lau. Set during the Second Sino-Japanese War, it is a story of vengeance and resistance, displaying a dynamic visual style and incredible martial arts. Closing the festival is the romantic comedy “Au Revoir Taipei,” written and directed by Arvin Chen. Spanning just one night, it tells the story of Kai and Susie as they find excitement (including an Asian Four Tops cover band) and love together in Taipei. Produced by Wim Wenders (“Wings of Desire”), “Au Revoir Taipei” promises to be the perfect ending of what is sure to be an amazing festival.

Currently tickets in packs of four ($34) and ten ($86) can be purchased online at, and starting Oct. 19, tickets can be bought at the Mission Valley UltraStar theater’s box office. There are many perks of buying your tickets online, including cheaper costs and a special line that allows you inside before those who bought at the box office. If you’re looking for a more-budget friendly alternative to this event, all films in the festival playing weekdays at 4 p.m. are free.

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