Sunday, June 11, 2023
Home Woman business Short film about growing up Chinese in Metro Vancouver up for U.S....

Short film about growing up Chinese in Metro Vancouver up for U.S. national award

A Coquitlam man’s short film about growing up Chinese in Metro Vancouver has been nominated for a national award in the United States.

Wei-Lai is a short film that’s creating a big buzz. Tony Shi’s story, produced while studying at the University of Southern California, draws on his his experiences as a youth in British Columbia.

Read more:

B.C. prop and set designer auctioning off decades of film and TV creations

“The story is about a young immigrant boy. Essentially he says, ‘I don’t want to be Chinese anymore. I’m going to try my luck in the neighbourhood,’” Shi told Global’s This is BC.

Story continues below advertisement

The comedy is inspired by Shi’s experience moving from China to Canada with his parents when he was eight years old, and what life was like growing up in a new country.

“Between the age of eight to 16, all I wanted to do was assimilate and just be Canadian,” Shi said. “The film is ultimately a love letter to my parents, saying I’ve recognized everything that you’ve done for me and I don’t want to forget it.”

Wei-Lai has been nominated for Best Comedy Series at the upcoming College Television Awards in the U.S. It’s giving young filmmakers exposure at a time when diverse storytelling is being encouraged.

More on Entertainment

Read more:

B.C. stuntwoman breaking barriers in Hollywood for a second generation

“It’s definitely nice now being in Los Angeles, being in Hollywood and seeing that shift in the broader public consciousness,” Shi said.

Shi is just starting to make a name for himself as a filmmaker, but said the recognition for Wei-Lai has given him the confidence to pursue this career, with the hopes of sharing more stories about life in B.C.

“It’s encouraging, would be the best way to describe it,” he said. “It tells me that I can keep going on this path.”

Story continues below advertisement

To contact Jay Durant with a story idea for This is BC, email him details and contact information at

&copy 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Most Popular

Mary Turner Pattiz, Rock D.J. During FM’s Heyday, Dies at 76

She was known as “the Burner” for her seductive delivery, but off the air she was anything but a wild rock ’n’ roller. She...

Quebec dental hygienists give back to community with free dental care

Diane Marcin couldn’t believe it when she saw a flyer advertising a free dental cleaning Saturday – she said she had to check it...

Burglar takes the cake: Vancouver thief snatches goodies, and cleans store

A Vancouver cafe burglary was caught on video early Friday but it was not a typical break-in. The only thing stolen from the store? A...

Vancouver fundraisers held to support theatre and security for youth drag camps

The Carousel Theatre for Young People on Vancouver’s Granville Island is holding two fundraising events on Saturday. The two events will feature performances by the...