During our Pasadena screening, we received a very enthusiastic response from one of the audience members. Ann Lau told us that Qiu Jin was one of her role models and she was very excited to have seen the movie. She was instrumental in setting up our screening in New York. Putting us in touch with Peggy Chane from the Visual Artists Guild, we secured Tuesday’s screening at Tribeca Film Center in record time. Peggy is a great marketer, and she brought a nice sized crowd to the showing. It was also great to see friends and co-workers — Christine, Gaelen, Anand and Sid — on Tuesday night. The event was co-sponsored by the VAG and New York Women in Film and Television. All in all, about 40 people braved the wet weather to watch Autumn Gem.
Tribeca Film Center, as one might expect, has a great projector and audio system. We heard things in the movie that are usually muffled by lesser sound systems! I debated between showing the movie from the DVD or from my laptop. While the uprezzer for the DVD was really good, I still saw more detail from my laptop’s 720p version of the film. So, in the end, we went with the laptop.
There was a big discussion during the Q&A regarding the similarities and/or differences between foot binding and cosmetic surgery. Some in the crowd felt that there was no correlation between the two, arguing that cosmetic surgery is elective whereas foot binding was forced upon women. Others felt that societal pressures might have transformed foot binding into something women felt that they needed to have done on them.
After the screening, several of us went to the Greenwich Street Tavern for drinks. We didn’t stay that long because we had to meet up with Joon-Mo at the famous Joe’s Shanghai. We’ve heard from many people that Joe’s Shanghai has the best shu lam baos. The dumplings were indeed very good, large and juicy. It was good to catch up with Joon-Mo, who’s starting his first year at the Business School at Georgetown. We met up with Sid in Shanghai when we began our filming of Autumn Gem in February of 2008. Now, here we were a year later halfway across the world!