Seeking Asian Female

An American man and a Chinese woman pursue a marriage brokered by the internet when she moves across the Pacific to start a new life with him.

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Series
Independent Lens
Premiere Date
May 6, 2013
Length
82 minutes
Funding Initiative
Open Call
Producer/Director

Debbie Lum

Debbie Lum is a San Francisco-based filmmaker who specializes in intimate character-driven stories about the Asian American experience. Seeking Asian Female is her feature-length documentary debut. She directed and produced two short documentaries for Wayne Wang about his early two works, Chan Is Missing and Dim Sum. She also co-produced and edited Show more the award-winning Kelly Loves Tony (directed by Spencer Nakasako), which aired on the PBS series, POV and played at festivals internationally. Her documentary editing credits include, among others, To You Sweetheart Aloha (winner of Audience Award at the VC LA Film Festival) and the acclaimed a.k.a. Don Bonus (winner of a National Emmy), which aired on POV. She also wrote and directed the fictional films Chinese Beauty, A Great Deal! and One April Morning. She was an editing instructor at San Francisco State University and the Vietnamese Youth Development Center’s Media Lab, and has an M.F.A. in Cinema from San Francisco State University and a B.A. in Religious Studies from Brown University. Show less

Co-Producer

Ali Sargent

Ali Sargent relocated to San Francisco after over eight years of making documentaries based out of New York City and Vermont. As a director and field producer, Ali has driven across the country, filmed in emergency rooms, lived in a trailer on a circus lot, and interviewed young gang members in Detroit. She field produced Circus, the six-part verité series Show more for PBS about a season with the Big Apple Circus, and Hopkins, a series about Johns Hopkins Hospital for ABC News which won a Peabody award. She directed Inside The Detroit Gang Squad, an episode for National Geographic. She has worked for PBS's Frontline, CBS, ABC, and Reuters as well as the independent documentary company M30A Films. Her print journalism has appeared in the Norwich Times and on ABCnews.com. She graduated from Barnard College in 2005 with a B.A. in Film Studies and has attended the CPB Producer’s Workshop at WGBH. Show less

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The Film

Seeking Asian Female follows the surprising romance of Steven and Sandy — an aging white man obsessed with marrying any Asian woman and the young Chinese bride he finds on the internet. Debbie, a Chinese American filmmaker, documents and narrates with healthy doses of humor and reflection, from the early stages of Steven’s search for an Asian bride, through the moment Sandy sets foot in America for the first time, to a year into their precarious union. Global migration, Chinese-American relations and the perennial battle of the sexes, weigh in on the fate of marriage in this eccentric love story.

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