A Response to Slaying the Dragon Reloaded

[EDITORS NOTE: Koji is a writer and producer for the movie The People I’ve Slept With.]

Quentin Lee, my friend and the director of my film, The People I’ve Slept With, wrote an article on the API blog, You Offend Me You Offend My Family that I think everyone should read. It is a response to a new documentary, Slaying the Dragon Reloaded that will be premiering at the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival. The film uses footage from The People I’ve Slept With without our permission. The filmmaker justifies this by claiming “fair use.” However, even in the most liberal uses of that phrase, it does not apply to a film that has not yet been released on DVD.

I don’t want to rehash what Quentin wrote — again, you should read the article — but what is most disturbing to me is how a fellow Asian American artist/educator would so causally take and use without talking to the different API filmmakers to get their approval (on the footage) and to get their opinions on the subject. The different filmmakers whom she calls out, including Justin Lin, deserve an opportunity to respond to claims that his film, Better Luck Tomorrow, “asserted themselves by ‘silencing’ Asian American women.”

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Author: Koji Steven Sakai

Writer/Producer Koji Steven Sakai is the founder of Little Nalu Pictures LLC and the CEO of CHOPSO (www.CHOPSO.com), the first Asian English streaming video service. He has written five feature films that have been produced, including the indie hit, The People I’ve Slept With. He also produced three feature films, a one hour comedy special currently on Netflix, and Comedy InvAsian, a live and filmed series featuring the nation’s top Asian American comedians. Koji’s debut novel, Romeo & Juliet Vs. Zombies, was released in paperback in 2015 and in audiobook in 2016 and his graphic novel, 442, was released in 2017. In addition, he is currently an adjunct professor in screenwriting at International Technological University in San Jose.