Film Lab Receives Grant to Fight Elder Abuse Through Film

The Film Lab, thanks to a grant from the Asian Women Giving Circle, is now in pre production on "The Opposite of a Fairy Tale," a film that re-thinks what it means to be old and draws the issue of elder abuse out of the shadows.
Opposite of a Fairy Tale Reading Cast, AAARI-CUNY
Opposite of a Fairy Tale Reading Cast, AAARI-CUNY
MANHATTAN, N.Y. - Sept. 8, 2015 - PRLog -- The Film Lab (, known for its filmmaking competitions, educational outreach to support diversity in media and its production arm featuring diverse entertainment, has received a grant from the Asian Women Giving Circle to produce a film to help combat elder abuse.  The film, titled “The Opposite of a Fairy Tale,” addresses elder abuse through a fictional narrative designed to increase awareness of a widespread societal problem and to provide viewers with the motivation and tools to combat elder abuse.  The film, according to its producers, also "challenges mainstream perceptions about what it means to be elderly."

Written by actor and Film Lab President Jennifer Betit Yen, with the help of veteran screenwriter and director Aaron Woolfolk, the screenplay enjoyed its first public table read at The Asian American / Asian Research Institute at The City University of New York (“AAARI-CUNY”).  A Broadway-dominated cast performed a table read of the screenplay.  The cast included Carmen Ruby Floyd ( (After Midnight, Avenue Q, Porgy and Bess, Chicago), Karen Tsen Lee ( (House of Cards, Law & Orders and SVU’s Susan Chung, Homicide, All My Children), Di Quon ( (Maid in Manhattan, Grown Ups, Royal Pains, The Shield), Les Mau ( (Too Big to Fail, Law & Order, Grand Theft Auto III), and Phil Nee ( (Grand Theft Auto V, The Blacklist, Blue Bloods, The Colbert Report), among others.  For the complete cast and to learn more about the film, visit:

Betit Yen explained that “[e]lder abuse is a serious problem that is often not dealt with.”  According to the recent NYS Elder Abuse Prevalence Study, only 1 in 24 cases of abuse of people 60 and over are reported to authorities or agencies serving older adults.  Elder abuse among Asian communities is probably even more under-studied and under-reported than in the general population.[1] (http://#_ftn1)  Abused elders of Asian descent, perhaps especially women, are frightened to come forward, not wanting to disrupt the family unit or bring shame to the family. [2] (http://#_ftn2)

The film is dedicated to the memory of artist Josephine Chuch Liu Yen and is designed to bring exposure to the issue through the lens of fictional storytelling, easily accessible to the unique perspective of, not just Asian American women, but all people, and intended to create empathy and understanding, while at the same time avoiding judgment and soapboxing.  Videographer, photographer, vocalist, and director Youn Jung Kim, who earned recent accolades for her coordination of the Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout and for her direction of performances at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (“BAM”) and the film “Look Deeper: Beauty,” has signed on as director of the project.  The film is slated to begin production this fall.  For more #StopElderAbuse #OppositeFairyTale.

About the Asian American Film Lab
The Film Lab is a non-profit 501(c)(3) that promotes ethnic and gender diversity through outreach, education and production.  The Film Lab provides free or low cost programming ranging from screenwriting workshops to panels to seminars to screenings.  The Film Lab produces the television series “Film Lab Presents” and a wide variety of online content on AAFL TV. The Film Lab management team consists of Jennifer Betit Yen (President and Board Member, founder of AAFL TV Production Arm), Chloe Jenkins (Treasurer and Volunteer), Daryl King (Secretary and Board Member), Seth Scott (Unfinished Works), Youn Jung Kim (2015 72 Hour Shootout Coordinator and AAFL TV Productions), Nick Sakai (SAG-AFTRA representative), Kirtland Washington (AAFL TV, multimedia and production), along with a dedicated Board, interns and event volunteers. Board members include James Kyson, Edwin Wong and Aaron Woolfolk, among others.

Upcoming Events Include:

Sept. 17 Unfinished Works Screenplay Reading and Workshop

Sept. 24 Casting Workshop with Liz Lewis Casting in NYC

October 8 Screening, Panel and Reception at Time Warner Theatre

For details and to RSVP, visit

[1] (http://#_ftnref1)

[2] (http://#_ftnref2)  (“Culture affects how we see things. Some of the Asians may be suffering from abuse but don’t see it that way. If they don’t see it as abuse, they won’t report it”… “[A]bout the case of a son throwing to his mother’s face the dinner that she had burnt, most of the white and black Americans surveyed said it was abuse while 40% of Korean elders said it was no”).

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