March 1, 2010

Mynette Louie


Sundance Feature and Winner of 15 Film Festival Awards To Screen at
L.A. Downtown Independent in Exclusive One-Week Engagement

New York, NYCHILDREN OF INVENTION, a critically acclaimed independent feature film written and directed by Tze Chun, will have its New York theatrical premiere on Friday, March 12th. The film will run as an exclusive one-week engagement at the Downtown Independent in downtown Los Angeles.

CHILDREN OF INVENTION had its world premiere at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival, played over 40 film festivals, and won 15 festival awards, 5 of which were Grand Jury or Best Narrative Feature prizes, including the top prize at the Independent Film Festival Boston and Newport International Film Festival. The film was named one of the "Top 13 Films of 2009" by Hammer to Nail and made several "Best Undistributed Films of 2009" lists. It has also gained notoriety for its hybrid DIY distribution strategy , including being one of 5 Sundance films to launch YouTube Rentals. The filmmakers were recently named in Ted Hope's list of “21 Brave Thinkers Of Truly Free Film”.

In CHILDREN OF INVENTION, two young children living outside Boston are left to fend for themselves when their hardworking mother gets embroiled in a pyramid scheme and disappears. The film is Chun's debut feature and is loosely based on his own Sundance 2007 short film, WINDOWBREAKER, which earned him a spot on Filmmaker Magazine's annual "25 New Faces of Independent Film" list.

The film also takes inspiration from Chun’s own childhood in Boston’s suburbs. Says Chun, “When I was little, my sister and I followed my mother to countless pyramid seminars. The film is a personal story about th! e world I grew up in – a subculture of immigrant and working class Americans trying to get-rich-quick in order to get themselves out of a financial hole. I didn't foresee the current financial crisis. But with the economy the way it is now, it seems like everyone's living through some version of what the family in the film goes through.”

CHILDREN OF INVENTION features breakthrough performances by Cindy Cheung (LADY IN THE WATER) and newcomers Michael Chen, age 10, and Crystal Chiu, age 8. It was produced by Mynette! Louie (MUTUAL APPRECIATION), shot by Chris Teague (MAN, THE SECO ND LINE, SALT KISS), edited by Anna Boden (HALF NELSON, SUGAR); scored by T. Griffin (A WALK INTO THE SEA), cast by Susan Shopmaker (AFTERSCHOOL, GREAT WORLD OF SOUND, SHORTBUS), co-produced by Trevor Sagan, Dave Saltzman, and Sheila Dvorak, and executive produced by Dan Cogan of Impact Partners (BORN INTO BROTHELS, GHOSTS OF ABU GHRAIB, NO IMPACT MAN, THE GARDEN).

The film premiered theatrically at the Brattle Theatre in Cambridge, MA on February 26th, and is also being released in New York on March 12th at the BIG Cinemas Manhattan.

Chun will be in attendance at all the screenings on Saturday, 3/13 and the 4:30pm screening on Sunday, 3/14. Producer Trevor Sagan and Associate Producer Sheila Dvorak will be in attendance at the evening screenings on opening weekend (Fri, 3/12 to Sun, 3/14). For showtimes and to purchase tickets, click here.



One of Filmmaker Magazine's "25 New Faces of Independent Film," writer-director Tze Chun makes his feature film debut with one of the most-awarded and best-reviewed films of 2009. CHILDREN OF INVENTION is by turns humorous and heartbreaking, an "edge-of-your-seat family drama" (Spout) that's both "powerfully moving and rigorously intelligent" (Boston Phoenix).

After being evicted, hardworking single mom Elaine Cheng tries to maintain a normal life for her children, Raymond and Tina. Elaine juggles a number of jobs, including working for a questionable pyramid scheme. When Elaine doesn't return home one night, nobody knows the kids are home alone, and they are left to fend for themselves. As the days pass, Raymond, a budding inventor, realizes he needs to come up with a plan to take care of his little sister.

Referencing both the mortgage meltdown and suburban Ponzi schemes, "the film finds delicate moments of beauty and grace as it! s child heroes are forced to make their way" (Filmmaker Magazine). Featuring "gifted child actors--off-the-charts cute, refreshingly free of Hollywood precociousness" (LA Weekly), CHILDREN OF INVENTION is "urgent, artful, and even austerely poetic" (Variety) and "as close to cinematic purity as one is likely to see this year" (Film Society of Lincoln Center), a timely drama about the influence of the adult world on children and resilience in hard times.

CHILDREN OF INVENTION had its world premiere at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival, played over 40 film festivals, and won 15 festival awards, including Grand Jury or Best Narrative Feature prizes at the Independent Film Festival Boston, Newport International Film Festival, Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, San Diego Asian Film Festival, and Ojai-Ventura International Film Festival. It was named one of the "Top 13 Films of 2009" by Hammer to Nail, and made several "Best Undistributed Films of 2009" lists.

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