The Good, The Bad And The WTF With Alan Yang



I think this is a good time for us to pivot to our regular segment. Our favorite segment the good the bad in the wgn. Jeff I feel good about that. Let's do that okay. So why don't you lay down the rules of engagement for Ellen? Okay all right. So the rules of engagement for this game We live in a world of rolls right now mostly related to social distance and hygiene but in this particular game. What we what we do with this segment is it's kind of a round table segment where we will ask our guest or guests s is we will join in as well to talk about a single topic three ways so you know one dish served three ways and the three ways are the good of that thing what makes us feel warm and fuzzy inside positive Joyful the ecstatic and then the the bad the negative side the darker side of that thing and then finally the W. t. s. one of the things that still to this day. Make us go right. They don't necessarily need to be either good or bad. It could be either but they still leaves a little puzzled so we thought that it would be appropriate given the amazing work you've been doing in this. I mean won't call the genre but Solitary to do the good the bad dose of telling immigrant stories. And you know we figured that this is something which we want you to share with us on your own so we'll just do that three ways with you beginning with the good if you can you know. There's so many good things about it but if there's if there's something particular that you feel is really just heartwarming about the idea that we're now in a space where we can tell these kinds of stories or even shelvin anecdote of telling immigrant stories that you WANNA share. That was particularly heartwarming. That'd be fantastic. Yeah well the good part is the easy part right. It's like the bad shitting. Immigrants Stores goofing around something but no the good part. The good part is easy. And it's it's it's multi part right one. Which is like were able to do it right now. That's that's the number one. Good thing it's like we were at a zero. These stories weren't being told at all. You know we. We were essentially zero and even in the last five years that's started to change in in you know starting from some of the stuff we did on master like that that you know covered some some some of that ground and then starting to work on. Tiger tail which is about that and then you know obviously little America is a whole show. That's about immigrant stories but Being able to be just being able to have the freedom to tell these very specific stories that that you know just were not in the cultural landscape at all when you talk about this country. It's like it just didn't exist so so that's great. Secondly you know getting to know yourself a little better getting to know your family a little better getting to Appreciate part of yourself that that you may have not been very in touch with because you wanted to fit in because you wanted to assimilate so so becoming more comfortable with who you are when you look in the mirror. That's all been part of this for me. It's been it's been really served edifying an interesting fulfilling And then a third part is and sadly this is probably more relevant than ever is is just kind of. I don't WANNA say educating people but because that sounds like homework but it's like a it's it's showing that these all of these people are three dimensional human beings as basic as that sounds I at the sounds incredibly basic and simple but if you look at the past if you look at the history of Asian American representation on screen is not human three-dimensional it is being depicted as perpetual. Foreigners is being depicted as nerd being depicted as a Guys or a you know atomic towns or sort of robotic and emotionless and you know in a movie like Tiger tail. I wanted to show that we are full of emotions and we are full of internal life and are we are living breathing emotional creatures who change over time and you have regrets and who love movies love and find it hard to talk to our kids in hardtop for parents then overcome that you know all these things of intrinsic in telling a story like that and frankly. I haven't seen it very often depicted if at all and so all these things are kind of why I'm passionate about telling me stories in There's many many more reasons. But that's that's just off the top of my head. I think it's just scratching the surface and I think there are many more stories to be told in many different genres including potentially horror action thriller. You know I gotta say given that. Actually living in a Har- inaction thriller right now There is something really meaningful about humanizing Chinese immigrants and other Asian immigrants in this era. Right you know showing showing Chinese people townies people literally without their masks is so important and bring them to. Life is something which I think has repercussions for actual life. So I'm super glad that even though it wasn't planned that that this is coming out at a time in which it's needed in that fashion. Yeah I mean. Look the totally unexpected circumstance. And it's just it's it's awful. What's going on? But you know the movie is coming out and the movie will be available for people to watch and if it if it's some small comfort and if it's you know depiction that as we said is three dimensional than of Asian people and people with Asian bases like you know I. It can't be a bad thing in my mind right so now we move on to the second round like you said. It's little more difficult. Although I'll tell you you know it doesn't have to be something bad about immigrants stories but it could be something bad about telling them right. And how the challenge of actually doing them right? So what in your impression Allen is the bad Santa tell this isn't this isn't a bad per se but it is a difficult challenge right so so when we were doing little America for instance it was a production challenge. Because you're doing eight stories that take place in eight different countries in eight different parts of the of America. So we're should and we're shooting the majority of them in New Jersey. So you're faking New Jersey for Uganda. Your New Jersey for Singapore. You're you're making new. Jersey are everywhere. So yeah talked to our production designers. Amien Diana about about the challenges of doing stories but that show went some crazy as to not only hurry doing that but then we ended up shooting Montreal for Syria and then I flew to Florida and we shot this episode. That took place on a cruise ship and we fake a Floridian cruise ship going to the Bahamas for Alaska. So at that point. I think we were just making life more difficult for ourselves on purpose because that doesn't have any big immigrant that just makes it much more difficult In the same thing happened in some ways and tiger tail. Because you're shooting in New York and you're shooting in Taiwan and interestingly enough again. This is kind of funny but just the way the days split up. We ended up having to shoot some of Taiwan Four New York in the movie. That take place in your shot in. Taiwan and I like I kind of want people to guess which ones they are. 'cause there's some scenes that they're in your. We shot in Taiwan which is so crazy and we had them put out a casting. Call for extras like we need non-taiwanese extras and all and so we got like white and black people in I wanted to be in the background.

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