Arthur Dong: CAAM Has Built Bridges with the LGBT Community

“Forbidden City, USA" book signing at MoCA (Museum of Chinese in America, NYC), with son Reed Dong-Gee.  Photo by Lia Chang.
“Forbidden City, USA" book signing at MoCA (Museum of Chinese in America, NYC), with son Reed Dong-Gee. Photo by Lia Chang.

We reached out to selected filmmakers from our CAAM community and asked them how CAAM has made an impact on them. Award-winning filmmaker Arthur Dong shares his testimonial about CAAM’s history in building bridges with the LGBT community, taking risks, and supporting stories that need to be told.

For me, CAAM has been an ardent and forward-thinking partner in building bridges with the LGBT community. When NAATA (CAAM’s previous acronym that stood for the National Asian American Telecommunications Association) set out to premiere Forbidden City, USA in 1989, they arranged to partner with an AIDS organization, a first for any major API group during that time. In 1994, NAATA presented Coming Out Under Fire as their festival’s closing night gala at the Castro Theater, the festival’s first outing into America’s gay mecca (can you imagine CAAMFest today not at the Castro?!). And a few years later, they made sure we had much-needed finishing funds to bring my film about killers of gay men, Licensed to Kill, to Sundance. Since it was founded in 1980, CAAM has become one of our nation’s most vital contributors to the media landscape through their unwavering commitment to diversity as a multi-faceted principle. Please join me in supporting CAAM to make sure its mission carries on as we dive into this challenging 21st century.” – Arthur Dong

For a limited time only, anyone who donates $100 to our Connecting Community One Story at a Time by this Friday December 25th will receive a signed DVD of one of Arthur Dong’s films, Coming Out Under Fire or A Toisan Trilogy.

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About Arthur Dong
A newly-mixed Khmer dubbed version of  Arthur’s latest film, The Killing Fields of Dr. Haing S. Ngor (CAAMFest 2015 Spotlight Honoree), premiered at the Cambodia International Film Festival earlier this month. His critically acclaimed book, Forbidden City, USA: Chinatown Nightclubs, 1936-1970, won the 2015 American Book Award and was just re-reprinted in a collectible hardcover edition. Arthur is currently Distinguished Professor of Film at Loyola Marymount University’s School of Film and Television, one of the top ten film schools in the nation (Hollywood Reporter). Learn more about Arthur’s work on his website: www.deepfocusproductions.coms.