Category Archives: Film/Movies

Indiegogo…Go Go Power for Sugar Pie DeSanto!

Click on the link below for more information:

“…a Filipino immigrant father and an African-American mother, a family of 11 or so children, that included Etta James at some point, in a small house in the Fillmore district of San Francisco, a girl gang, sneaking into music clubs, joining music contests and winning too often, to finally being discovered and renamed by the great Johnny Otis — from Umpeylia to Little Miss Sugar Pie…”


One of my favorite songs of Sugar Pie DeSanto duet with Etta James “Do I Make Myself Clear”

Hilarious Song Called “Typecast (Lorde “Royals” Parody) ” by Tess Paras

From Tess Paras’ YouTube @TessTubeBaby:
Typecast (Lorde “Royals” Parody)
Written and performed by Tess Paras
(feat. Haneefah Wood and Ayana Hampton)
Directed by Rebekka Johnson
Music produced by Jack Dolgen

Tess Paras (“Grimm,” “Wilfred”) @TessParas
Haneefah Wood (“Ave Q,” “Nurse Jackie”) @HaneefahWood
Ayana Hampton (“In Living Color” reboot) @ayanadisco
Stephen Guarino (“Happy Endings”) @IAmStephenG
Stevie Nelson (“New Girl” “Live Prude Girls”) @IAmStevieNelson
Mo Welch (“The Mo Show”) @momowelch
Mike Still (Artistic Director, Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, LA) @mikestill
John David “J.D.” Witherspoon ( @JDwitherspoon
Sofia Gonzalez (“Community”) @SofiaMarieG
Jin Namkung (“Arrested Development”) @Rjnamkung

Production: Rebekka Johnson (Director & Producer), Lauren Aadland (Dir. of Photography), KP Przylepa (Camera Asst.), Rachel Olson (Makeup), Mayra Rodriguez (Sound), Ellie McElvain (Set PA), Cesar Mazariegos (Set PA), Amy Wieseneck (Editor)

Special thanks to Mo Welch, Jimmy Fowlie, Joseph Porter, and Ryan Noggle.

Typecast (Lorde “Royals” Parody) by Tess Paras
Originally Performed at the 2014 CBS Diversity Sketch Comedy Showcase, January 22nd & 23rd

I’m gonna play the white girl’s nerdy friend
[Of course]
I’m gonna play the white girl’s other friend
Who is sassy
[Omigod, you nailed that]
But she can’t have two black friends
[Two black friends?]
[It gets confusing]
And so I’m left out, I play the co-star nanny

Yeah, leading ladies are
Quirky, hipsters wearing vintage dresses
Tiny, pouty pixies, blue-eyed and precious
We don’t care
We’re Zooey Deschanel in our dreams

But every breakdown’s like
Sassy sidekick, bitchy nerd or neighbor
Oversexed Asian, urban girls with flavor
We don’t care
We’ll take any job right now we swear

And we’re gonna be Typecast
Everyone starts somewhere
I’ll be a nurse
A thug who’s tough
Any maid could look like us
You know what would be cooler
If I got my own series
And your own white friend,
Brown friend, beige friend, yellow friend
Submit all ethnicities

Tess Paras is represented by:
Manager, Bryan Brucks at Luber Roklin Entertainment
Agent, Brianna Ancel at Clear Talent Group

Movie about life of Cesar Chavez simply got it wrong

Written By Matt Garcia

Most great men have one. Malcolm X, Gandhi, Mandela all have one. And now, Cesar Chavez has his.

The biographical film titled “Cesar Chavez,” which came out this past weekend, lends itself to the creation of legends. In the case of Chavez, the legend is complicated by the fact that his story did not exactly lead to the liberation of the people he represented. Great strides were made during the heyday of the farm workers movement – namely the first contracts for farm workers and a California law that recognized their right to unionize. But field workers today suffer indignities familiar to those who worked in rural California prior to the 1960s.

These facts are not the concern of Diego Luna, the new film’s director. “We have to send a message to the (film) industry that our stories have to be represented. And with the depth and the complexity they deserve,” Luna said recently.

Fair enough. As a Mexican American and a historian, I too long for dignified cinematic portrayals of Latinos that convey the struggles for equality our people have initiated. Our yearnings, however, should not come at the expense of historical accuracy.

I recently published a book on the United Farm Workers and Chavez, and I understand the need to play a little loose with the timeline for dramatic effect. But Luna’s omissions and alterations are really historical subversions. His interpretation, I suspect, is a product of his unsophisticated handling of U.S. identity politics. He rejects the multiethnic community that made up the farm workers movement in favor of a simplistic notion that Mexicans did all the work. Creating a hero comes at the expense of depicting an entire social movement.

The Filipino American National Historical Society has rightly come out against the film’s misrepresentation of labor leader Larry Itliong and have questioned Luna’s failure to acknowledge the largely Filipino Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee, which initiated the 1965 grape strike, a turning point in the film.

The film doesn’t mention white volunteers and organizers beyond Fred Ross, Cesar’s mentor, and Jerry Cohen, the talented leader of the UFW legal team. Several white ministers and students played a critical role in the movement, including Rev. Jim Drake, who came up with the boycott strategy. As the film lumbers toward the epic signing of the first contracts in 1970, Luna’s most egregious distortion of history comes when he shows Chavez in London. We see the labor leader lobbying dockworkers on the Thames River wharf and appealing to consumers not to buy the fruit. Though this work actually happened, it was a young Jewish American volunteer, Elaine Elinson, who almost single-handedly kept the grapes out of Europe.

The film even fails to represent accurately the supporting cast of Mexican American activists in Cesar’s orbit. Gilbert Padilla (Yancey Arias) and Dolores Huerta (Rosario Dawson) come off as nothing more than a yes-man and yes-woman to Chavez when in fact they were distinguished organizers in their own right. Only Helen Chavez, Cesar’s wife, is presented as a character with her own mind and story, a tribute to America Ferrera’s standout performance.

But the film probably does the greatest disservice to Cesar Chavez himself. The director opts out of the 1970s altogether, a period in which Chavez struggled with personal and professional demons and became invested in creating a community rather than solidifying earlier gains. Such a storyline would have done little to burnish his credentials as a civil and labor rights leader, but it would have made for a more compelling film. More importantly, it would have made for a much more accurate portrait of the real man’s depth and complexity.

These omissions reflect the limitations of the genre and the hero-making project of this film. With rare exception, biopics elide complexity and avoid overt criticism of their subjects. The most extraordinary and entertaining renditions of historical figures have often via fictionalized characters, like Orson Welles’ Charles Foster Kane based on William Randolph Hearst (“Citizen Kane”) and P. T. Anderson’s Daniel Plainview based on Edward Doheny (“There Will Be Blood”) .

In fairness to Luna, Chavez was delivered to him with decades of historical baggage, thanks to hagiography and political stamps of approval from Robert Kennedy, Jerry Brown, and Barack Obama. Though new histories are now being written, it will take time for the public’s perception of the hero to catch up with the all-too-human Chavez. Sadly, Luna’s film does almost nothing to assist this move toward a new understanding of Cesar Chavez’s life and the successes and failures of the movement he led.

*Source: Merced Sun Star

And the Oscar goes too….

Congratulations to songwriters Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez, who won an Oscar for Best Original Song for “Let It Go,” the hit single from the animated feature Frozen, at Sunday night’s 86th Academy Awards. The big win apparently makes Lopez the first Filipino American to win an Oscar.


*Source: Angry Asian Man blog


Our hearts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Paul Walker. Paul was tragically killed in a car accident leaving his benefit event to help the Philippines. Paul leaves behind his 15 year old daughter Meadow.


Third World Independent Film Festival San Jose, CA Sept 19th – 22nd 2013

The Third World Independent Film Festival celebrates established and emerging filmmakers from third world countries and filmmakers from developed countries whose topics deal with issues of the third world.

This year the Third World Independent Film Festival will be held Sept 19th – 22nd.

Here are the categories for this year:










To learn more go to:

Jericho Rosales joins Jada Pinkett-Smith, Lisa Ling, Russel Simmons…in the Fight to End Human-Trafficking



Jericho Rosales joins Jada Pinkett-Smith, Lisa Ling, Sara Rue, Russell
Simmons, Nicole Scherzinger, and Mira Sorvino in the Fight to End Human-Trafficking at The CAST
15thFreedom From Slavery, Beverly Hills, May 9, 2013

Proceeds raised benefit Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST)

Beverly Hills, CA (May 7, 2013) – International Actor, Producer, and
Recording Artist, Jericho Rosales, is set to take part in The CAST’s 15thFreedom From Slavery Event at the Sofitel Los Angeles on Thursday, May 9, 2013 in Beverly Hills, CA.

Rosales to join Host, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Co-Host/ Emcee, Sara Rue, and Community Impact Award Presenter, Lisa Ling, in an evening of celebration and awareness with human-trafficking survivors and CAST’s contributors. Other celebrities scheduled to attend are *Russell Simmons, Nicole Scherzinger, Mira Sorvino, among others.

Jericho recently talked about being mindful and making a change.

“I have a heart for helping children…” expressed Jericho. “It’s important to be aware of this real and serious problem. I hope my film project “Breakaway” can inspire many to take action.”

“Breakaway” (Original Title: Alagwa) is Jericho Rosales’ first co-produced film, directed by Ian Lorenos, which highlights a single father and son relationship torn by the abduction of his son by human-traffickers. It has received multiple awards and nominations throughout Asia and the USA, including a recent win of “Outstanding Achievement in Acting” for Rosales at Newport Beach Film Festival last week.

Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking CEO, Kay Buck, says, “Celebrating our 15th year of service to the community of Los Angeles, the Coalition to Abolish Slavery & Trafficking (CAST) provides direct services to survivors of modern-day slavery from 58 countries around the world. We are thrilled to be working with Jericho Rosales for his outstanding performance in his new film about child trafficking in the Philippines. Victims from the Philippines who are trafficked to Los Angeles currently represent nearly 20% of all of our cases, so we are looking forward to Jericho’s participation at our From Slavery to Freedom event on May 9th and beyond.”

CAST has been internationally recognized for its dedication to the identification of trafficking survivors, the mobilization of all sectors of the community to identify and advocate against trafficking, and the provision of direct services for victims.

All proceeds raised from the event will help fund CAST programs and services that provide human trafficking survivors with 24-hour access to safety and comprehensive, trauma-informed care that helps them rebuild their lives and become thriving members of the community.

To make a Donation or to find more information on CAST, please visit

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