This week in The SituAsian Room, Emilie and Zach welcome Justin Ching to talk about Asian and minority representation in Hollywood, Justin’s production company J-school, intersectionality, storytelling, and more. Justin Ching is a filmmaker, Forbes 30 Under 30 in Media, and has worked for Disney/ABC, Fox, and Youtube.
Growing up, I had all of these expectations set by my parents, my teachers, and my peers. I was one of the smarter students in my classes, I never found my work too difficult, and I spent free time being tutored outside of school to make sure I stayed ahead and my skills were sharp. My parents expected me to do well because they always pushed me to strive to be the very best I could be. Everyone else, however, assumed I would succeed because it was simply expected of “that smart Asian student.”
The Model Minority, as defined by teachingtolerance.org, is a myth based on stereotypes. In relation to the Asian American community, this defines us as individuals with gifted intelligence or skills, strong work ethics, and high obedience towards their elders.
As a young Asian American, I didn’t have many other Asian faces to look up to. I spent my younger years obsessed with Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan because they were some of the few famous Asian roll models that we heroes on screen. But there was always one hero on TV: Grant Imahara.