Americanized

Growing up in Oakland’s hip-hop culture, Eng struggles with her Chinese American identity. To her high school basketball team, she’s just that girl who sits on the bench; but to the Asian kids she’s "Americanized." As her sophomore year of high school comes to an end, Eng tries to find a sense of belonging within the two worlds that don't accept her.

  • Erica Eng
    Writer
    Fighter, Poison
  • Erica Eng
    Director
    Fighter, Poison
  • Simran Mahal
    Producer
    Don't Be A Hero, Rocking Horses, Biophilia
  • Drew Daniels
    Director of Photography
    Waves, Euphoria, Thunder Road, Skin
  • Claire Koonce
    Casting Director
    Women Is Losers, Cloak & Dagger, Walking Deceased
  • J.D. Moran
    Production Designer
    Sorry To Bother You, Blindspotting
  • Bowei Yue
    Editor
    Balloon, To us, From Us
  • Terry Hu
    Key Cast
    ""Eng""
    End of Summer
  • Amber Gaston
    Key Cast
    "Steph"
    Mermaid Down, Sweet Taste of Souls, Stab'N Cabin, Angels of Mercy
  • Helen Ong
    Key Cast
    "Nee Nee"
  • Charles Yan
    Key Cast
    "David"
    Lion
  • Shannon Dang
    Key Cast
    "Denise"
    Kung Fu, Prison Logic, The Romanoffs, Sorry for your Loss, The L Word: Generation Q
  • Sharar Ali-Speaks
    Key Cast
    "Tori"
  • Mark A. Neely
    Key Cast
    "Coach Carr"
    Amazing Ape, Passions
  • Aiko Fukushima
    Music Composer
    The Mummy, District 9, Leaving Neverland
  • Bo Pang
    Sound Designer + Mix
    Ghazaal
  • Project Type:
    Short
  • Genres:
    Drama, Coming of Age, Sports, Female Led
  • Runtime:
    17 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    March 20, 2021
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    Sony Venice
  • Aspect Ratio:
    2.39
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    Yes
  • Student Project:
    No
  • Cinequest Film & VR Festival - WINNER "Best Dramatic Short"

    World Premiere
    "Best Dramatic Short"
  • Cinequest Film & VR Festival - WINNER "Audience Choice Award"
  • Palm Springs International ShortFest - WINNER “Young Cineastes Award”
    Palm Springs
    “Young Cineastes Award”
  • Atlanta Film Festival

    Southern
  • LA Shorts International

    Los Angeles
  • Bentonville Film Festival
  • DC Asian Pacific American Film Festival
Director Biography - Erica Eng

Erica is a fifth-generation Chinese American director based out of Los Angeles. Her films have screened at Atlanta Film Festival, Palm Springs International ShortFest, Cinequest, and HollyShorts among others.

Inspired by her Oakland roots, Erica creates work that reflects the diverse community in which she grew up. As a student, Erica used her winnings at the San Francisco International Film Festival to buy camera gear and shoot videos around the bay area. Erica moved to Los Angeles where she worked her way up the assistant ladder before becoming the executive assistant to the Academy-nominated director, Michael Mann. She spent six years balancing work with her own projects before taking the leap to become a full-time director.

Erica’s combined background in film and dance influences the rhythm and energy behind her emotional storytelling. Through her character-driven films, Erica creates stories that explore themes of cross-cultural relationships, acceptance and self-discovery.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

This is my first narrative screenplay and I wrote this story based on my experiences growing up in Oakland as a fifth-generation Chinese American. I had a hard time understanding what it meant to be Chinese because my family didn’t speak the language, cook the food, or practice many of the traditions. I didn’t feel fully Chinese, or fully American - I just felt lost.

"Americanized" represents a younger version of myself who was trying to figure out who I was and where I belonged. To some, being called Americanized meant that you were identifying with white American culture, but the version of America that I grew up in is Oakland’s street culture. The corn-rowed hairstyle that the main character appropriates shows an attempt to fit in with her version of being “American.” We’ll see her try to become everything that she’s not, only because she wants to be accepted at the end of the day.

Creating this film was a deeply personal experience. We filmed at my old high school with the help of the Oakland filmmaking community and my old computer teacher Mr. Frey who encouraged me to learn filmmaking as a teenager. This is a film that I self-financed, and it exemplifies my identity as a filmmaker. I'm excited that this film can shed a light on the diversity of the Asian American experience.