My SDAFF Internship Collection: Tackling UCSD's Taiwan Film Showcase
Days 2 through 4 of the 10-Day San Diego Asian Film Festival were easily the toughest days of the festival. We had our several Q&As and receptions throughout the many venues, but we also had our annual awards gala. Celebrities that came by for our various screenings include comedian Randall Park, YouTube celebrity Anna Akana, and Scott Pilgrim's Knives Chau herself, Ellen Wong. We also had filmmakers dropping in from all over the world, which is equal parts stressful and exciting.
Over these three days, I was the manager in charge of UCSD's Atkinson Hall where we were screening our Taiwan Film showcase, including Q&As with Anna Akana and "Kano" director Umin Boya. Both events were WELL BEYOND sold out, and having to lead my staff through that chaos was certainly a learning experience. (Perhaps the most important thing I learned being 'Make sure you bring enough ink for the box office printers'!)
And the weekend only got worse. Over the three days, I had films skipping, stopping early, or simply not working at all. (One time the projectionist even let the film play without the English subtitles!) Each time I had to come out, apologize to the audience, and somehow rectify the situation. I was mortified.
But no matter how difficult the weekend got, I felt as if my boss always remained proud of me and confident that I would be able to resolve everything on my own. When things go wrong, I always tend to put the blame on myself. The theater was my responsibility, so if something goes wrong, doesn't that reflect poorly on me?
I'm really grateful to be a part of a team who remains supportive of one another even when mistakes are made and things aren't always going their best. As embarrassing as it was to make mistakes, I probably learned more over this weekend than I have throughout the duration of the internship thus far.
As we approach the halfway mark of this year's festival, I'm continuing forward as a more confident house manager. I've already seen the worst of it. I'm ready to take on the rest.
Photo 1: Taiwanese director Umin Boya at the Q&A event for "Kano"
Photo 2: YouTube filmmaker Anna Akana at UCSD's Q&A event
Photo 3: UCSD's Atkinson Hall filling up on Day 2
Photo 4: The cast of ABC's upcoming sitcom "Fresh Off The Boat" at the SDAFF Awards Gala
Photo 5: Actress Ellen Wong at the SDAFF Awards Gala
Photo 6: YouTube filmmaker Anna Akana at the SDAFF Awards Gala
Photo 7: The cast and crew of Asian American independent film "Ru" at the SDAFF Awards Gala