Directed by Daniel Hsia
Special Pre-Gala Presentation!
Best New Actor, 2012 Shanghai International Film Festival
Best New Director, 2012 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
The immigration story is as old as America itself. The 21st century, however, sees the rise of the reverse: the story of the expat, in particular the one who moves to a major metropolis in China, where commerce is king and English is as much the lingua franca as Mandarin. In these uncharted waters of mobility and migration are fresh laughs and new possibilities of what it means to be Asian American.
In the case of SHANGHAI CALLING, we meet Sam (Daniel Henney), a hot-shot lawyer in New York moving up the corporate ladder with another successful closing. Just when he thinks he’s about to make partner, he’s told to pack his bags for Shanghai to coddle a client. Unluckily for Sam, despite his looks and last name, he doesn’t speak a lick of Chinese. Luckily for him, awaiting his arrival in Shanghai is bilingual relocation specialist Amanda (Eliza Coupe) who knows her way around expat central (“America Town”), run by longtime resident Donald (Bill Paxton). After a legal mess erupts, Sam must put out the fire with the help of Shanghai’s colorful cast of wayfarers.
In only his first full-length feature, writer-director Daniel Hsia showcases impressive chops for delivering as breezy, charming, and entertaining a romantic comedy as any on either side of the Pacific. –Eric Lallana
Co-presented by: Giving Back Magazine, National Association of Asian American Professionals – San Diego (NAAAP-SD), SDSU Asian Pacific Student Alliance (APSA), SDSU Confucius Institute, USC Alumni Association
Cast: Daniel Henney, Eliza Coupe, Bill Paxton, Zhu Zhu