HomeBad Ass AsiansLee Isaac Chung wins tops prizes at Sundance for Minari starring Steven...

Lee Isaac Chung wins tops prizes at Sundance for Minari starring Steven Yeun

Minari by director Lee Isaac Chung stars Steven Yeun

Minari from director Lee Isaac Chung and starring Steven Yeun took away two big prizes from Sundance-the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award, reports AA Press.

The film is distributed by A24 and will hit theaters across the country later this year.

The semi-autobiographical story features a Korean immigrant’s family’s move from California to Arkansas.

During a Q&A at Sundance, Chung told the audience Yeun was the first actor who came on board with the film. Han Yeri (“Sea Fog”), Youn Yuh Jung (“Sense 8”), Will Patton (“Halloween,” “Armageddon”), and Scott Haze (“Thank You for Your Service”) round out the cast. Newcomer Alan Kim plays David, a 7-year-old boy.

The crew chose Tulsa as its film locale.

“On set, one of my favorite memories was that we kind of have this Tulsa crew where everyone’s coming from the Ozarks, we have a lot of crew members who are Korean Americans or Koreans,” saod Chung. “I would enjoy going to both sides. With Koreans were talking about ‘hey, look at this rice cooker. I used to have this rice cooker our production designer had done. Then I go to the Oklahoma side and I say, hey, did I get the barrel fire right? I was connecting to people on that level as well. That farming element. That element of growing up in the Ozarks is really important for me to kind of break down those categories we assume of what Ozark is like or what does Korean and American immigrant life look like. Instead break down those categories and find something more human.”

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