Tag Archives: Northwest Film Forum

Virtual Event Sunday to Honor Donnie Chin’s Legacy as CID Advocate

by Ronnie Estoque


The recent rise in violent attacks against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) nationally has galvanized community organizers, old and new, to take a stand for justice. History shows us that such hate-fueled violence is not new in any way, and activist legacies left by the likes of Seattle’s Chinatown-International District’s (CID) Donnie Chin continue to inspire the next generation of young AAPIs to organize and protect those most targeted and vulnerable in our neighborhoods.

Donnie Chin was a respected Seattle Asian American activist and organizer. Chin left his impact on the CID community through the establishment of the International District Emergency Center (IDEC), which started in 1968 as the Asians for Unity Emergency Squad. He was inspired by the Black Panther Party to support the CID community with a block watch patrol, free emergency medical services, de-escalation, substance-abuse and mental health check-ins that city departments failed to provide.  

“Donnie Chin was a selfless defender of this Chinatown-International District community,” said Robert Fisher, Collections Manager at the Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience. “He spent his entire life helping others and the community. His daily presence is missed even more today.”

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Vivian Hua, Northwest Film Forum Receive 2021 Mayor’s Award for Achievement in Film

by Mark Van Streefkerk


Executive Director of the Northwest Film Forum (NWFF) Vivian Hua 華婷婷 (she/they interchangeably) is someone who doesn’t have the stereotypical background of an executive director, but during a year marked by disruptive change caused by a pandemic, that turned out to be a good thing. Throughout last year, the NWFF streamed 25 online film festivals and continued to increase access to resources for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ filmmakers. The creative solutions Hua and the NWFF brought to Seattle’s film communities garnered the 2021 Mayor’s Award for Achievement in Film earlier this month. 

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9th Annual Seattle Asian American Film Festival Will Be the Biggest Yet

by Mark Van Streefkerk


This year’s Seattle Asian American Film Festival (SAAFF) will take place online, and feature more short- and feature-length films, documentaries, and animated films than ever before in the festival’s history. Streaming with the help of partner Northwest Film Forum from March 4 to 14, SAAFF will virtually screen 123 films by or about Asian Americans in the U.S., grouped into 15 programs, and will hold one drive-in movie event.

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16th Annual Children’s Film Festival Seattle Brings ‘Love and Light’ to Virtual Audiences

by Mark Van Streefkerk 

The Children’s Film Festival Seattle (CFFS) returns for its 16th year with a theme of comfort and hope as we enter the second year of a global pandemic. Presented by Northwest Film Forum (NWFF) February 18–28, the online streaming festival includes 133 live-action and animated films from 36 countries, many of which were made during lockdown. With four feature films and 16 short film programs, the festival intends to uplift and comfort children and their families by inspiring empathy, understanding, and a nuanced view of the world. 

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Northwest Film Forum: A Hyperlocal 2021 Sundance Festival Venue

by Beverly Aarons


A 1960s beat poet, a 12-year-old auntie, and an army of activists walk into a room. That’s not the start of a riddle set in 2020 but a sneak peek of films and panels hosted by the Northwest Film Forum (NWFF), a satellite venue for the 2021 Sundance Film Festival (Jan. 28–Feb. 3). NWFF is one of 30 venues hosting hyperlocal film screenings and panels as part of this year’s Sundance Festival. 

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WEEKLY NEWS GLEAMS: Longest Night Solstice Ceremony, New Year/New Activities, & More

A weekly round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle!

curated by Emerald Staff


Longest Night: Solstice Ceremony 2020

Mon., Dec. 21 — 7–11:59 p.m. (6:30 doors)

From the hosts: This Winter Solstice, Northwest Film Forum, Holocene (Portland), REDEFINE magazine, Pink Noise (PDX), Crash Symbols Records & Seattle Documentary Association join forces to present five virtual rooms filled with music, movement, films, and meditation.

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‘Black and Center’ September 2020: Moving With Art in Seattle

 by Jasmine Jamillah Mahmoud


Outside, an eerie somberness permeates the atmosphere. Burnt air and still, gray haze evoke our proximity to fire, smoke, evacuations, and devastating climate change. Inside, Kiné Camara uplifts the mood. On screen she glides. Camara reiterates a four-beat movement stepping rightwards, center, leftwards, and then center again. With each step, her head is angled, hands flexed, and shoulders structured to punctuate pulsing music. She is teaching us the Azonto, a Ghanaian dance move that compels our bodies to loop into the entrancing beat across this four-step.  

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Couch-A-Thon Takes Seattle Film Festivals Online and Benefits Artists’ Relief Funds

by Mark Van Streefkerk

A number of Seattle film festivals were scheduled for 2020, but unfortunately COVID-19 had other plans. Since public gatherings are temporarily banned, this year’s in-person festivals have been canceled. But thanks to the new online film and music festival Couch-A-Thon, content from the scrapped events is now available for streaming. Continue reading Couch-A-Thon Takes Seattle Film Festivals Online and Benefits Artists’ Relief Funds

Simone Pin Productions Celebrates Diversity, Talent, and Thought-Provoking Artistry in ‘Queens’

by Becs Richards

Simone Pin Productions is much more than a dance company; they are dreaming of a new world. They are in the work of visioning for a more inclusive, sexy, editorial, and equitable creative space. Their upcoming performance, Queens, is a technical burlesque-based showcase of POC dancers, singers, and entrepreneurs premiering at Northwest Film Forum June 20.

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Vivian Hua Unpacks Islamaphobia in ‘Searching Skies’

by Georgia McDade

In eight minutes, Vivian Hua — writer, filmmaker, and executive director of Northwest Film Forum — unwraps Islamophobia in her crowdfunded short film “Searching Skies.” A Christian family has invited a Syrian refugee family to share Christmas dinner. The couple’s college-age nephew does not welcome the guests. The refugee father, Hamza (Kal Maleh), and his wife Amira (Nour Bitar) — both real-life Syrian refugees — suffer the hostility of the young man.

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