CAAM Produced Wayne Wang Film “Coming Home Again” World Premieres in Toronto With Sold Out Audience

A young Korean American man is on stage wearing a hat and holding a mic, while an older Chinese American man wearing glasses stands next to him. Next to him is a pregnant Korean American woman with a low bun slicked back.
Actor Justin Chon, Director Wayne Wang, and actress Jackie Chung at the world premiere of CAAM produced "Coming Home Again." Toronto International Film Festival.
"The thing that struck me the most was his enthusiasm and his spirit and I felt like, wow, after all these years, being on all these sets and hundreds of hours making films, he still approached it with the joy of a 10 year-old."- Justin Chon on Director Wayne Wang.

Coming Home Again, Wayne Wang’s latest film, world premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival this weekend. The film is a production of the Center for Asian American Media.

The narrative feature film focuses on a Korean American man (played by Justin Chon) who cares for his ailing mother (Jackie Chung) while trying to master her traditional cooking, based on Chang-rae Lee’s New Yorker short story. He cooks a traditional Korean New Year’s Eve dinner for his mother that is what his mother always cooked for the family. It takes a haunting look at the sacrifices an immigrant mother and son have taken for each other.

After the film, Director Wayne Wang and actors Justin Chon and Jackie Chung stayed for a Q&A (see full Q&A below), moderated by Toronto’s Reel Asian International Film Festival Executive Director Deanna Wong.

Wang notes:

“When I was doing all the studio films in Hollywood, a lot of times, it would preview really well, it would score really high but the studio would say, take out every moment that doesn’t do anything, or take out every frame that is not necessary…and then I started seeing my doctor because I was having a tough time breathing. My doctor just says, you have to relax, and really learn to breathe again. And that’s when I realized that a lot of these films, they push you so much and they push you to think a certain way. And now that I’m kind of older, and sort of retired, I can afford to do a film where I can take my fucking time! I want you to breathe, I want the film to breathe, and I want you to think about your own life, and what happens with your own life rather than me manipulating you how to think.”

Variety film critic Tomris Laffly gave it a glowing review:

Wang is no stranger to exploring the immigrant experience in America — in films such as “Chan Is Missing,” “The Princess of Nebraska” and “A Thousand Years of Good Prayers,” he portrayed the different shades of various Chinese Americans with nuance and empathy. He brings the same watchful compassion to the Korean American family at the heart of “Coming Home Again,” grappling with anticipatory grief, with the impending departure of one of their own.

Check out some of the other buzz below, and follow CAAM on Twitter, FB, and Instagram for news on future screenings of the film.