BCB Profilin’: Derek Nguyen
This installment of Profilin’ features Derek Nguyen, New York-based filmmaker and man behind the recent short The Potential Wives of Norman Mao. Starring Ed Lin (Snakes Can’t Run) and Cindy Cheung (Children of Invention) and executive produced by George Takei (what WHAAAT). BCB wrote about the film a couple months ago, and now we’re following up with a Profilin’ of writer & director Derek. Enjoy!
Greetings, I am…
I’ve been known to bitch about…
…everything! Having worked in non-profits serving artists and underprivileged communities (immigrants, youth, HIV, LGBT), I have a lot to bitch about. Although I tend to be a cheery person, I’m a pessimist at heart. Pretty much anytime I read the newspaper or watch the news (which is rare), I go into a tirade about the injustices of the world and how stupid people can be. I’ve been known to just bitch!
My influences are…
… Ang Lee, Jean Pierre Jeunet, Shakespeare, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Wong Kar Wai, Wes Anderson, Alice Walker, Harold Pinter, e.e. cummings, and Bruce Lee!
On a Saturday night you can find me….
…working! I’ve been a very busy guy lately. I’m working on a few film projects and my play, Monster is being produced off-Broadway in March at Pan Asian Repertory Theater. With rehearsals, writing, producing, directing, and finishing up my short film, The Potential Wives of Norman Mao, I tend to work weekends. And if I’m off, I’m cooking one of my grandma’s secret Vietnamese recipes or take a trip out of town. I love to travel!
On a Tuesday night you can find me…
… (unfortunately) working! I lead an exciting life, don’t I? There was a stretch of time when I had no work at all. So I value the work that I have and can get. I secretly love to work. I also work with an organization called APEX that mentors (primarily) Asian American youth in NYC to help them achieve their career, educational, and personal goals in life. I believe in nurturing future generations of achievers! So I might be there too.
My usual drink/poison is….
…Pinot Noir. Preferably from France.
If I was a superhero my name would be…
What do you mean, “if?”
One year, my partner and I threw a superhero-themed Halloween party. I had a silver wig that lit up, and a mack-daddy suit complete with platform boots. It was quite fly I have to say.
I have a borderline unhealthy obsession with…
… food. I love to eat it, cook it, have people over for dinner, go out to eat, go to the farmer’s market, talk about food, read about food, watch food shows, and follow celebrity chefs (go David Chang!). Which is why, a few years ago, I had to lose 55 pounds!
Favorite thing to do in New York (or wherever you reside)….
… is going over the Manhattan or Brooklyn Bridge in a cab really late at night with the windows rolled down. Looking back at this great city, I remember how fucking awesome NYC is and why I made so many sacrifices to be here.
Free Association time! First word I think of after “Asian America”:
My weapon of choice is….
My secret life is…..
… of an astronaut.
Be sure to check out my…
… film at www.normanmao.com.
My play at www.panasianrep.org.
My Kickstarter page at http://kck.st/biU13t.
My IMDB page at http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1532529.