KAFFNY Third Culture Cinema 2016 Press Release


    For its 10th annual cinema festival this October 15-22, 2016 at Wythe Hotel Cinema and Made in NY Media Center by IFP, the Korean American Film Festival New York evolves into KAFFNY THIRD CULTURE CINEMA.
    "KAFFNY Third Culture Cinema is the only international cinema festival platform dedicated to the stories and voices of third culture kids, i.e., humans, of any national origins, raised with the tension of two or more cultures," states founder Dave Kim. "By challenging traditional cultural qualifiers of nationality and ethnicity, KAFFNY Third Culture Cinema catalyzes new global trajectories of the future, reducing the colonial divisions of the past."


    This year, KAFFNY hosts its first competition for Best Third Culture Feature(s) and Best Third Culture Short. Films will be judged on contributions to the creation of third culture. KAFFNY will announce in total, six feature films and seven shorts.
    The feature competition will be decided by a Digital Jury, announcing their top pick for narrative and/or documentary the day after Closing on Sunday, October 23rd via social media, using tags @kaffny #3rdCulture. Andrew Ahn, director of the Sundance film SPA NIGHT, will serve as Head of Digital Jury.


    KAFFNY hosts the feature screenings of one Hip-Hop Documentary and one Rock Narrative, bringing to light the stories of third culture musicians.


    KAFFNY is now promoting long-form works-in-progress supported under its new Incubator Lab program. Leveraging its networks while instilling a community mentality, KAFFNY seeks to enable the realization to fruition of typically under-marketed projects, offering administrative, technical, and creative support to up-and-coming filmmakers.

Andrew Ahn Head of Digital Jury for KAFFNY Third Culture Feature Competition

Andrew Ahn has accepted our invitation as Head of Digital Jury for KAFFNY's first Third Culture Feature Competition! 

Three narratives and three documentaries will compete within their categories for Best Third Culture Feature and their contribution to third culture: "challenging existing narratives." Features in competition will be announced in the coming weeks!

Our Digital Jury will leverage social media to expand opportunities for our 3rd Culture Competition.

Andrew Ahn is a Korean-American filmmaker born and raised in Los Angeles. His debut feature film SPA NIGHT premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival, winning an award for US Dramatic Breakthrough Performance. Ahn participated in the Sundance Screenwriters Lab, the Film Independent Screenwriting Lab, and the Film Independent Directing Lab for the project. With his producing team, Ahn raised over $62,000 on Kickstarter to fund production. The project also received a Sundance Institute Cinereach Feature Film Fellow grant, Panavision New Filmmaker grant, and FilmLA grant. Ahn's short film "Dol (First Birthday)" premiered at Sundance in 2012.

Ahn is an alum of Film Independent’s Project Involve and has promoted diversity in the arts by mentoring youth filmmakers through programs like Pacific Arts Movement’s Reel Voices and Outfest’s OutSet. He is also a board member of Los Angeles Performance Practice. He graduated from Brown University and received an MFA in Film Directing from the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts).

KAFFNY launches 1st Incubator Lab at Made in NY Media Center by IFP!

Our 1st KAFFNY Incubator Lab at Made in NY Media Center by IFP is supporting feature projects written & directed by:

Jules Suo - DOSI (in post-production), pictured center
Jennifer Suhr - YOU & ME BOTH starring Constance Wu (in development), pictured to right of Jules

Our purpose is to leverage community to fully realize the potential of under-marketed media projects.

<also pictured, right to left: Executive Director Dave Kim, Treasurer Elizabeth Han, and Programming Director Chung Tsang>

New Office at IFP Media Center!

KAFFNY is now based at the Made in NY Media Center by IFP in Dumbo, Brooklyn (to fulfill our Ford Foundation, Good Neighbor Committee funding goals of building capacity and enhancing outreach). We are very excited to join a community of innovative tech and media companies!

Coming soon... announcements regarding filmmaker projects (at various stages of production) participating in our new KAFFNY INCUBATOR LAB program!

Call for Entries 2016 - 10th Annual KAFFNY

KAFFNY is now accepting submissions for its 10th Annual film festival, taking place in Brooklyn, New York in October 2016. 

KAFFNY invites filmmakers of all backgrounds to submit for consideration films that are relevant to the Korean American community, the Korean diaspora, Korean-identified persons, or as our name implies, New York. 

KAFFNY also considers works outside the Korean nexus featuring at least one key creative member of Korean heritage, regardless of the subject matter. 

Submissions are being accepted in the following categories:

All genres, for films shorter than 50 minutes, completed any year. Short films completed January 1, 2015 or later are eligible for competition (if any, at KAFFNY discretion).

Narrative or documentary, for films longer than 50 minutes, completed any year. Films completed January 1, 2014 or later are eligible for competition (if any, at KAFFNY discretion).

You may submit via FilmFreeway or Withoutabox.

9th Annual KAFFNY Premieres "People Are the Sky"

October 15, 2015 at 7 pm

CUNY Graduate Center - Proshansky Auditorium (365 Fifth Avenue @ 34th Street)

Director Dai Sil Kim-Gibson is the first Korean American filmmaker to be given official permission by the North Korean government to film inside its borders. The result is unprecedented, at times startling, for hers is an up close look of the hurts and desires, beauty and contradiction, pride and aspirations of the long held demonized nation. She seamlessly weaves her own personal story as a native born North Korean, with the fractious history of the North South division and pinpoints the roots of North Korean’s hatred of the United States. A mix of talking heads, epic images and graceful musings, “People of the Sky” refers to the ordinary people she meets along the way and the ultimate meaning of her pilgrimage.

The screening will be followed by Q&A with Dai Sil Kim-Gibson, moderated by Chi-Hui Yang.

Tickets are $15 for this event via Eventbrite (Purchase).


KAFFNY announces Call for Entries for 9th Annual Festival (October 2015)

The Call for Entries for its 9th Annual KAFFNY (October 2015) is now officially open! You may submit via filmfreeway (live now) or withoutabox (going live soon). The early deadline is June 8th, 2015.


Narrative or documentary films, completed January 1, 2014 or later. For films longer than 45 minutes


All genres, for films shorter than 45 minutes. No date required. Short films completed January 1, 2014 or later are eligible to win the Jury Award for Best Film and/or the Audience Award.


Non-theatrical or non-broadcast video art (single channel or installation) of any length. To facilitate submission review, your preview materials should include recorded samples of the installation in its environment, if applicable.