*In an era where the goal of diversity in entertainment sometimes overlooks Asian Americans, both on and off stage, a new comedy series is about to be launched in Los Angeles.
Comedy InvAsian, a six-part live stand-up series featuring some of the country’s top Asian American comedians as well as talented newcomers, each performing one-hour specials, will debut at the Japanese American National Museum over two weekends, February 10-12 and February 24-26. Tickets are now on sale and can be purchased at www.comedyinvasian.com.
Produced by Koji Steven Sakai and Quentin Lee, and directed by Lee, Comedy InvAsian will be co-produced and distributed by Viva Pictures, with each live performance filmed for later digital television broadcast. The lineup of confirmed talent cuts a swath of Asian North America, featuring Korean American, Japanese American, Filipino American, Chinese Canadian and Vietnamese American performers.
The series’ bold, irreverent poster art uses 70s’ classic arcade game icons to satirize and play with the stereotypes of Asian Americans, foretelling the no-holds-barred tone of the series’ flavor and trashing the Model Minority image.
Kicking off the series on February 10 will be Paul Kim, a Korean American Laugh Factory stalwart and Kollaboration founder, followed by Japanese American comedian Atsuko Okatsuka (Comedy Central Asia; Disoriented Comedy; Laughing Skull Comedy Festival) on February 11. Closing out the first weekend on February 12 will be Vancouver native and self-proclaimed “recovering Broadway chorus boy” Kevin Yee.
The laughs continue the second weekend, with Filipino American comedian Joey Guila (Showtime; Filipino Kings of Comedy Tour) taking the stage February 24, followed by transgender Vietnamese comedian Robin Tran (The Comedy Store; The Comedy Comedy Festival) performing on February 25. Wrapping up the weekend and the series’ first season will be veteran Japanese American comedian and actress Amy Hill (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend; The Great Indoors; All American Girl) on February 26.
Each live performance in the series will be edited into six episodes, which will comprise the first season of the digital television series of Comedy InvAsian, with six one-hour episodes for distribution.
“Comedy InvAsian will celebrate the talent and diversity of a select group of Asian American comedians, all of whom are truly at the top of the comedy game,” noted producer Koji Steven Sakai. Fellow producer and director Quentin Lee echoed the sentiment, adding “We’ve met so many talented comedians of color in our experiences in film production, this first season is just the tip of the iceberg.”
“We’re thrilled to work with Quentin and Koji on this series,”
commented Victor Elizalde, President of Viva Pictures Distribution, LLC, who is also distributing Lee’s latest feature film, The Unbidden, further stating,
“Their professional experience and accomplishments as well as their passion for placing Asian American talent in the spotlight is not only welcome, but needed in an industry that seeks to showcase diversity,”
Elizalde has supported diversity in entertainment, having also co-produced Sigue La Risa, the first successful all-Spanish language comedy stand-up series, currently airing exclusively on Netflix in the US and Latin America.
Tickets and information on Comedy InvAsian will be available on the website: http://www.comedyinvasian.com