Upon receipt of the Guggenheim Fellowship Award, we began pre-production on “My Life in China.” As of July 15, 2006, a crew of 5 professionals, all sharing a passion and belief in the project have been working to turn the idea into a reality.
The objective of the film has evolved from the desire to document the changing cultural climate of China into a cohesive vision in which four vastly differently lives connect in their search for a Chinese identity. These stories were selected after much research, and represent a cross section of Chinese society. Our intention is to highlight the amazing diversity that exists within the Chinese Diaspora while focusing on something incredibly personal which effects the majority of those who distinguish themselves as Chinese today – identity in the midst of drastic change.
We have begun moving forward on several fronts - the first is fundraising. We are applying for grants from film and art foundations, Chinese-American foundations and are approaching corporate sponsors.
Simultaneously, we are in pre-production for the development portion of our shoot. We have chosen to label this first shoot as “development” as we will decide on the subjects of three of our stories and delve deeper into their lives. Commencing the shoot at this time will enable us to have a beginning to our story – a place to jump off from when we return later next year. It will also deepen the understanding and connection that we will portray with our subjects; we will be witness to their lives over time.
While in China during October and November, we also plan to shoot a large portion of my father’s story: “The Eng Family Story”. Our team will accompany my father, Mr. Yau King Eng on his return to Hong Kong and his reunion with our relatives. We believe this portion of the film will set the tone for the rest of the stories and will also help us learn valuable production lessons, which we will then apply when shooting the other three stories.
Stay tuned, more to come!
(The "real" Kenneth Eng)