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Meet the Filmmakers

Mayumi Yoshida, Different Than Before

Born in Japan, raised in three continents, Mayumi Yoshida is a Director, Actor and Writer based in Vancouver, BC. She’s an alumna of Women In the Director’s Chair, WarnerMedia x Canadian Academy Writers Program, TIFF Writer’s Studio, and TIFF Netflix Talent Accelerator Fellowship.

Since making her directorial debut on AKASHI, she has created many short films centering around Asian characters and has won many awards worldwide. The latest music video she directed, Different Than Before by Amanda Sum, starring Tzi Ma (Mulan) earned a Vimeo Staffpick, Jury Award at SXSW Music Video Competition, and screened at Oscar / BAFTA qualifying film festivals. In 2023 it also got nominated for Music Video of the Year at the JUNO Awards. Her first feature AKASHI received development and production fund from Telefilm and is slated to go into production in 2023, shooting in Vancouver and Japan. Mayumi is currently working on the A24/AppleTV+ series SUNNY starring Rashida Jones as an Associate Producer. You can also catch her on the new TV series, Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies on Paramount+.

Jon Chiang, Doh Jeh Mama (多謝嫲嫲)

Jon Chiang has always been drawn to universal stories woven from underrepresented people. Raised by Chinese parents born in Lima, Peru, he grew up in his family’s grocery store in East Vancouver. Walking the blurred lines of his Chinese and Latino heritage, he developed a sensitivity that he uses to reveal the truths about our shared experiences. A principle at Chifa Studios, he is producing transformative stories through documentaries. When not working, you can find him on the bike, folding empanadas or chasing his toddler around.

Rheanna Toy, Wok Hei, Producer/Editor

Rheanna Toy is a mixed-race filmmaker who lives and creates on Coast Salish Territory. She has produced and edited over 200 short videos for clients such as Samsung and UBC. Short films she has directed have screened at multiple film festivals including the NSI Online Film Festival and Seattle Transmedia Film Festival. Her short documentary debut Serisa 26 won the 2018 Audience Choice Award at the Cinema Spectacular.

Joel Salaysay, Wok HeiWriter/Director

Joel Salaysay is a Vancouver-based Canadian filmmaker of Chinese-Filipino descent. He is the writer/director/editor of predominantly short form fiction. In 2014, he wrote and directed Lifers, an award-winning short that screened in festivals over the world, and picked up awards in 2015 for Best Short Fiction and Best Student Short at The Montreal World Film Festival, The TIFF Top Ten, and The BC Leo Awards. He has been editing 3D animated series at Wildbrain Studios since 2015, and began directing for 3D animated series in 2020.

Tesh Guttikonda, Mom vs Machine

Tesh Guttikonda is an award-winning filmmaker born in India, raised in Canada. His formative years of exploring different cultures and landscapes around the world shape his diverse filmmaking style. Since discovering his passion for filmmaking Tesh has worn many hats, writing, producing, or directing several features, short films, and music videos which have gained traction around the world. Tesh established his production company Kalpana Films with the mandate to branch out and create empowering stories that bring people together.

Grace Chin, Q&A Host

Grace Chin is a Vancouver, British Columbia-based creative writer and editor, performer, producer and arts administrator, as well as a content marketing specialist for corporate and not-for-profit clients. She is Executive Director of Crazy8s Film Society, a board member with Vancouver Short Film Festival, General Manager with Ruby Slippers Theatre, and co-founder of the Pan Asian Staged Reading Society and its script development platform, Scripting Aloud. A produced playwright, optioned screenwriter and published author, she is a member of the Playwrights’ Guild of Canada and the Union of British Columbia Performers/ACTRA. Grace was Festival Director of the Vancouver Asian Film Festival and has served on the board of Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre and Vancouver Asian Heritage Month, as well as on other performing arts juries, committees, and panels. As a performer, she has most recently appeared on episodic series and features for television and film including for ABC, CBS, CW, E!, Showcase, Freeform, Hallmark, Lifetime, CBC, Netflix, and AppleTV+, as well as independent production. Her play A Funny Thing Happened On My Way To Canada can be seen at rEvolver Festival 2023 in May. Grace has a BA in English Literature (Hons) from the University of British Columbia, and accreditation in journalism from Langara College. She is googleable.