News Desk


Saturday, November 1, 2014

NBC and Asian American Film Lab to Collaborate to Promote Diversity

The Asian American Film Lab™ (“Film Lab”), is excited to announce a special collaboration with NBCUniversal’s renowed Talent Infusion Program for the 2015 72 Hour Shootout, the Film Lab’s well-known annual global filmmaking competition which promotes and supports diversity in media.

The top ten films of the 2015 72 Hour Shootout will have exclusive screening consideration for the NBC Shorts Film Festival semi-finals.  The winner of Best Acting will receive a very special casting mentorship from Jandiz Estrada, Manager of Talent Diversity Initiatives for the NBCUniversal Talent Infusion Programs, which will be based on Ms. Estrada’s availability but will likely include two meetings, a general in Los Angeles and an audition coaching.  The winner of Best Screenwriter will receive a special mentorship award from Grace Borrero Moss, Manager of Entertainment Diversity Initiatives for the NBCUniversal Talent Infusion Programs, which, subject to Ms. Moss’s schedule, will include feedback on one teleplay and up to two in-person meetings in Los Angeles or New York.  In addition, the Film Lab’s annual Holiday Gala this year will include a raffle for, among other things, a one-time mentoring session with Ms. Estrada for a very lucky actor or actress.  Film Lab President and actor Jennifer Betit Yen, commented, “The face of our nation is becoming more and more multi-cultural and multi-ethnic and it is exciting to embrace and celebrate that through film and television!”

The NBCUniversal Talent Infusion Program is dedicated to expanding opportunities for diverse writers, directors and actors.  Ms. Estrada explained, “We are honored to be able to assist the Film Lab in promoting and supporting ethnic, cultural and gender diversity in mainstream media.”

About NBC Universal Talent Infusion Program

More information on NBCUniversal’s programs can be found online at

About Asian American Film Lab

The Film Lab began in 1998 as collaborative of New York-based filmmakers whose goals were to hone their craft and to share their knowledge, experience and resources. The membership has grown to comprise professionals, artists and other talented individuals who all share the common goal of creating great film and promoting Asian American filmmakers and other filmmakers of color, and the visibility of their stories and characters in film and television.  The Lab now runs monthly programs to promote gender and ethnic diversity in film and television.

The Asian American Film Lab and Jennifer Betit Yen created AAFL TV in August 2013 to address an explosion of interest in diverse, original creative content along with a corresponding rising level of dissatisfaction with mainstream programming for a lack of diversity and/or perpetuation of racial stereotypes.  AAFL TV partnered with NYCMedia, New York City’s flagship media station, to begin airing a television series entitled “Film Lab Presents,” consisting of 30 minute episodes of racially diverse original contemporary entertainment content in January 2014.  The Film Lab currently airs television series on NYCLife and CrossingsTV.  The series are directed by Ryan Hayward.

The Film Lab is run under the direction of President Jennifer Betit Yen.  Board members include Edwin Wong, James Kyson, Perry Tsao, Erik Lu, Aaron Woolfolk, Aurora Betson, and Daryl King.

The Film Lab’s other programming includes filmmaking workshops with industry professionals, screenwriting contests, and film competitions, including the annual 72 Hour Film Shootout.  This annual competition, now in its tenth year, has inspired hundreds of filmmakers by helping nascent talent take brave steps towards a filmmaking career.

The Asian American Film Lab is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. (view past Shootout films on “AAFL TV”)

Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween 2014

Wishing you a very happy and Safe Halloween from all of us at the Daily Film Forum.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

MOVIE SPOTLIGHT - "Wrestling With Life"

Wrestling With Life  

A documentary feature film 
by Chris Bohlender

Produced by David Nowick 

'Wrestling Brings the Light' 

Link to trailer:
Link to Facebook:

After losing his twin brother to cancer Dave Nowick is left to fulfill his brother's parting wish: "Take care of our wrestling club." Coach Dave walks the fine line between winning and personal growth in elite kids sports, finding new perspective and healing along the way.

Dave is faced with the challenge of grieving for his brother, while running a nationally ranked kids wrestling club. Walking the fine line between winning and personal growth in elite kids sports proves to be difficult but ultimately fulfilling.

WRESTLING WITH LIFE follows Mile High Wrestling Club through the 2012-2013 season, leading up to the prestigious Tulsa Kids Nationals. The film details the intense training youth wrestlers endure, as well as the tremendous expectations that are placed on kids as young as five years of age.

WRESTLING WITH LIFE also delves into the Nowick twins' upbringing immersed in the sport of wrestling, relating humorous as well as inspiring anecdotes. These stories reveal a life of profound dedication to the sport and to each other. Commentary from masters of the sport, including NCAA Champions and professional MMA fighters, is also included which details the physical, mental and spiritual riches this monastic lifestyle offers.

Despite his early tribulations, Dave ultimately finds resolution of his grief and new found inspiration as the wrestling season ends. He returns to his family and his life invigorated, having resolved his brothers legacy into four words: 'Wrestling Brings The Light.'

For more information on WRESTLING WITH LIFE: 

Wrestling with Life

Wrestling with Life: Stories of My Life Immersed in the Sport of Wrestling - Phil Nowick - Google Books

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Is this the best book teaser trailer ever?

 The CGI teaser trailer for Beyond The Gloaming, lovingly crafted by celebrated Berlin filmmaker, Kaleb Lechowski is released today.The novel itself - Book I of Sebastian and the Hibernauts, the YA fantasy series by Melbourne author, Brendan Murphy - is released.

Kaleb, a 24 year old Berlin filmmaker, shot to fame with his six-minute CGI classic, R’Ha. It has received almost fourteen million hits across YouTube and Vimeo posts, catching the attention of Hollywood, where it is to be turned into a feature length film directed by Kaleb and produced by Star Wars producer, Rick McCallum. The two-minute Beyond The Gloaming teaser trailer was made whilst R'ha was in preproduction and has a score by Welsh composer, Sam Redfern.

Sebastian and the Hibernauts, explores the psychological and moral landscape of a brutalised boy turning teenager and is both an homage to Celtic mythology and an allegory of the Troubles in Ireland. In the first instalment, a cowardly Yorkshire lad must brave the ghostly Gloaming to save the Celtic dreamworld of his ancestors. Beyond The Gloaming introduces Hibercadia, a world brimful of hunkypunks and gobbleratches, quizzing glasses and magic shillelaghs, mechanical fireworks and night rainbows, tragedy and joy. Assent Publishing's President, Les Denton, is 'thrilled to have this fantastic YA series at Phantasm Books'.

For more information on the book visit Brendan Murphy at or For more information on Kaleb Lechowski, please visit Facebook (, Vimeo (, or Tumblr ( For more information on Sam Redfern, please visit

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Over There: Greatest Hits of the Great War Opening in New York City and Greenwich, CT

Soprano Brett Kroeger is in preparation for a concert of the greatest songs of World War I, with opening performances at the Liederkranz of New York City on Dec. 7th, 2014 and at the Greenwich Arts Council in Greenwich, CT on Dec. 13, 2014. Over There: Greatest Hits of the Great War is the singer’s collaboration with Broadway arranger and pianist Christopher Denny. Admission to the show is free of charge.

“The man who disparages music as a luxury and non-essential is doing the nation an injury,” was the way President Woodrow Wilson viewed the importance of song during the conflict. “Music, now, more than ever before,” he said, “is a national need.” Over Thereshowcases the music that mattered in the years from 1914 to 1918, a chronicle in song of the World War I experience for soldiers and those back home alike.

As Brett Kroeger explains, “Music during the war was used for political propaganda, to rally the troops, to keep the home fires burning, to bring a little humor in desperate times, and to help people reflect on the past, present and future. It’s been exciting to go back to a time before cellphones or IPads or computers or television or even radio and put together this program of the chart-topping World War I hits, songs that reflect the emotions and experiences of the times, both back home and Over There.”

Locally, Brett has been performing for the past two years with Troupers Light Opera and will also be among the soloists at the Troupers gala, “An Evening of Operetta: Gilbert and Sullivan and Friends” for one night only on November 1, 2014 at the Pequot Library in Southport, CT.  Troupers Light Opera will celebrate the beginning of their 70th season with this production.

About Brett Kroeger

Brett Kroeger, who lives in Riverside CT, has appeared with Troupers Light Opera in the role of Edith for the company’s April 2014 production of Pirates of Penzance. She sang with the Taconic Opera in its 2014 premier production of the Dan Montez oratorio, Jonah. She was the featured vocalist at La Fenice in Venice for Hebrew University’s European conference on “The Song of Songs.”  In New York, she has sung the roles of Flora and Annina in La Traviata (LDTS Temple, Bill Schuman Presents); Tisbe inCenerentola and Micaela in Carmen (New York Consulate of Argentina).

For the Manhattan Opera Repertory Company, she performed Tatiana in Eugene Onegin and Pamina inDie Zauberflöte, Sandman/Dewfairy in Hansel and Gretel, and Marguerite in Faust. As a resident artist with DiCapo Opera, she appeared as Julie in Dangerous Liaisons, Sylviane in The Merry Widow and the premier novice in Suor Angelica. More information and links to past performances can be found at