After more than a decade in development, director Evan Jackson Leong is now ready to unveil his magnum opus, Snakehead, to the world. Starring Shuya Chang, Sung Kang, and Jade Wu, Snakehead tells the story of Sister Tse, a woman who rises through the ranks of a Chinatown crime family before having to reconcile between personal success and her family. Check out the trailer below:
The movie, being released by Samuel Goldwyn Films and Roadside Attractions, was first discussed on this website back in 2016 when Leong and producer Brian Yang appeared on a previous incarnation of Hard NOC Life when the film was being crowdfunded and before Chang was cast in the lead.
Side note: it will be almost exactly five years to the date when Evan and Brian came on the show and the movie’s official premiere and release.
Back in 2016, the director spoke about the way media representation for Asian Americans has evolved since the ’90s — which has changed even more in 2021. Placing Snakehead, a movie with a complex lead at the center, at the vanguard of the current moment of AAPI-led films.
“For me, it’s the embodiment of a female Asian character that is glorified, vilified, and feared as a protagonist,” said Leong back in 2016. “We’re all about [being] three-dimensional.”
Speaking of the movie’s lead, at the time of that recording, the filmmakers were still searching for an actress to embody the role. They eventually found her in Shuya Chang, whose previous feature film credit is Netflix’s Crounching Tiger spinoff Sword of Destiny. If the trailer is any indication, Chang is about to be the next big Asian American movie star.
After making its international premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September, Snakehead will be released in theaters and on Digital starting October 29.