Sundance Institute

Meet The 2020 Sundance Institute Indigenous Intensive Fellows

September 16, 2020

We are happy to announce the six indigenous filmmakers that participated in the 2020 Indigenous Intensive—presented by WarnerMedia's 150—which focused on the advancement of storytellers’ projects under the guidance of experienced Creative Advisors and the Institute’s Indigenous Program.

The American Pavilion

Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at the Cannes Film Festival

September 09, 2020

Since 1989, The American Pavilion has offered unparalleled experiences in Cannes to film students and emerging filmmakers from around the world. The Emerging Filmmaker Showcase provides an opportunity for filmmakers to have their works seen by Cannes Festival and Film Market attendees. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 Finalist Films will be screened at a future Festival in Cannes. In the meantime, we will virtually showcase these exceptional and diverse films to our American Pavilion audiences for a limited time. Each of our four categories of films (Emerging Filmmaker Showcase, LGBTQ Showcase, Student showcase and High School Film Showcase) will be followed by a scheduled live Q&A with the filmmakers. Screening dates to be announced soon.

Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival

Pacific Cinewaves

September 11, 2020

From a young Samoan woman stricken with bleeding stigmata, to a documentary portrait on Native Hawaiian slam poet Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio, to an animated tale that reveals the hidden history of four healing stones on Waikiki Beach; these pieces are cinematic love letters to the living culture of the Pacific.

Sundance Institute

12 Coming-of-Age Films and Family Dramas to Watch During Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

May 21, 2020

From rural Arkansas (Lee Isaac Chung’s Minari) to Los Angeles’s Koreatown neighborhood (Andrew Ahn’s Spa Night) to 1910s Hawaii (Kayo Hatta’s Picture Bride) and beyond, Asian American and Pacific Islander filmmakers have covered a lot of ground, literally and metaphorically, over the years.

To celebrate these filmmakers and their work during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in the United States (and Asian Heritage Month in Canada!), we’ve dipped into our archives to put together a list of coming-of-age stories and intergenerational family dramas that have played the Sundance Film Festival or gone through Sundance Institute programs over the years.

Warner Media

HBO Announces Top 25 Semi-Finalists For The 2020 HBOAccess Directing Fellowship

May 12, 2020

HBO has selected the top twenty-five emerging directors for the semi-final round of the 2020 HBOAccess Directing Fellowship. The program supports directors who are interested in a career in television by giving them the opportunity to shoot a pilot presentation which will air on HBO, HBO GO, HBO NOW and HBO Max.

The 25 semi-finalists include: Juan Pablo Arias Muñoz, Brandon Broussard, Emil Gallardo, Devin E. Haqq, Tarik Jackson, Tiffany Kontoyiannis Guillen, Erin Lau, Huay-Bing Law, LeRon Lee, Denise Moreno, Afia Nathaniel, Faraday Okoro, Lanre Olabisi, Solomon Onita Jr., Rammy Park, Jessica Petelle, Eric Pumphrey, Aemilia Scott, Sarah Smith, Portlynn Tagavi, Sabina Vajrača, Zao Wang, Ashley Williams, Marielle Woods, and Hao Zheng.


'Fine Cut' Announces L.A. Student Winners on its 20th Season

October 01, 2019

Chapman University’s Erin Lau, director of the short film “The Moon and the Night” was presented with The Jack Larson Southern California Student Filmmaker Award. Lau will receive a $2,000 travel stipend and the opportunity to be a part of the American Pavilion Emerging Filmmaker showcase at the 2020 Cannes International Film Festival thanks to a partnership with The American Pavilion as well as a $10,000 Keslow Camera Package.

2019 PBS Online Film Festival

"The Moon and The Night" wins Jury Prize

September 30, 2019

Since its launch in 2012, the PBS Online Film Festival has featured diverse films member stations, producers and public media partners. Starting July 15, viewers can once again watch, vote and share their favorites. This year's festival includes collaborations with a wide variety of public television producers. The PBS Online Film Festival has attracted more than 7 million video streams over the first six years.

Pacific Islanders in Communications

ʻOhana Koa streaming on Pacific Pulse

February 20, 2019

Pacific Islanders in Communications  acquired the streaming rights for Erin's first narrative short, ʻOhana Koa. The short will play as a part of season one of their series Pacific Pulse. 

Oxford Film Festival Blog

The 2019 Oxford Film Festival Announces Award Winners

February 11, 2019

In a competition category introduced for the first time this year, the Best Student Film winner was Erin Lau’s THE MOON AND THE NIGHT, with Lau receiving a $250 check sponsored by Michael Johannson.

Filmmaker Magazine

Made Visible: The 2018 Hawai’i International Film Festival

January 08, 2019

Winner of the Second Prize in HIFF’s Made in Hawai’i shorts program (note: this writer was also one of the jury members), Erin Lau’s finely tuned The Moon and the Night was yet another graduate of the Ohina Filmmaker’s Lab. A precise, condensed telling of one young woman’s difficult realization that in order to save her family, she must stand on her own, the film stood out for its quieter line of filmmaking, worlds away (both cinematically and literally) from the blockbuster noise of the Marvel Universe. Basically a two-hander between emerging actors Bella Shepard and Jason Quinn, The Moon and the Night strips cinema down to the essentials of acting, mood, and setting.

Pacific Islanders in Communications

Working with an agent

December 05, 2019

Erin Lau is a Native Hawaiian Producer/Director now residing in Los Angeles.  She has been on PIC's radar ever since she was in high school video production classes at Kamehameha Schools - Kapalama Campus under the tutelage of instructor Leah Kihara. During the summer of 2010 PIC sent a 17-year-old Erin to L.A. for the FOX American Indian Summer Institute (AISI) held at Loyola Marymount University. After high school, she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Creative Media at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa from the Academy for Creative Media.  Erin has just received her Master's Degree in Filmmaking from Chapman University and is now represented by an Agent with United Talent Agency. She shares her experience on signing with her agent. Read on here.

Jubilee Media

Erin Lau joins the Jubilee Media team

December 18, 2018

Erin Lau has been hired onto the Jubilee staff as a full-time Producer-Director. Jubilee Media is a popular Youtube channel that aims to create content that bridges people together, challenges assumptions, and inspires empathy.

Hawaii International Film Festival

"The Moon and The Night" wins 2nd for Best Made in Hawaii Short

November 18, 2018

The jury shared: “We’re thrilled to give this prize to THE MOON AND THE NIGHT, for the performances of its two leads and for its precise, condensed telling of one young woman’s difficult realization that to save her family, she must stand on her own.”

Honolulu Magazine

24 Films You Won’t Want to Miss at the 2018 Hawai‘i International Film Festival

November 07, 2018

Equally impressive is The Moon and the Night, a coming-of-age short directed by Kamehameha Schools alumna Erin Lau. The film chronicles the complicated relationship between a teen and her father, especially after he takes her dog to compete in a dogfight.

Hawaii International Film Festival

2018 Best Made in Hawaii Short Nominees

November 01, 2018

"The Moon and The Night" is nominated for the 2018 Best Made in Hawaii Shorts Award.

Hawaiian Airlines

ʻOhana Koa picked up by Hawaiian Airlines

July 01, 2018

My first short film from 2013, ʻOhana Koa, is currently screening on Hawaiian Airlines for the summer. If you find yourself flying with them, give the film a watch! It's located under the Hawaiʻi International Film Festival (HIFF) category.

Sundance Blogs

Native Filmmakers Erin Lau and Shaandiin Tome Workshop Short Films at Sundance Institute Lab

May 08, 2017

Two emerging Native storytellers, Erin Lau (Native Hawaiian) and Shaandiin Tome (Diné) will participate in the 2017 Sundance Institute Native Filmmakers Lab, continuing the Institute’s year-round work in the discovery and development of artists from diverse backgrounds.

Frolic Hawaii

Ridiculously short interviews: Ohina Short Film Showcase

August 11, 2015

“Day Pass” is a dramedy that follows Ben, an uptight twentysomething, as he checks his troubled teen sister out of a behavioral health institute. “Day Pass” was also nominated for the Eurocinema Best Student Film award.

Hawaii News Now

Eurocinema Takes Part in in Hawaii International Film Festival and Hands Out Awards

November 03, 2014

The Hawaii International Film Festival continues here on Oahu until November 9 and also taking part in the festival is Eurocinema. For years passed, Eurocinema has rewarded young filmmakers for their hard work and this year will be no different.


Sunrise brings in one of the founding members of Eurocinema, Cliff Colvin, and one of the young filmmakers he's honored in the past, Erin Lau. Erin is a two-time recipient of the grant/scholarship Eurocinema awards students.

Hawaii Public Radio

An interview with director/writer Erin Lau

October 31, 2013

Erin Lau is the director of two short films, Koa ‘Ohana and Little Girl’s War Cry,  that’ll be shown at the Honolulu Museum of Art’s ‘Oiwi film Festival at the Doris Duke Theater on November 12 and 13th.

New Zealand-US Embassy

Young filmmakers from Hawaii impress Rarotonga

July 17, 2013

While doing some blog maintenance today I realized that I neglected to write about a special event back in May – the presentation of the first American Ambassador Award at the inaugural Film Raro Film Festival. I was in Washington at the time for the U.S.-N.Z. Partnership Forum, so my Deputy Chief of Mission Marie Damour represented me in the Cook Islands and presented the award to a team of four young filmmakers from the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa.

Hawaii Independent

Hawaii film to take on domestic violence in Rarotonga

March 04, 2013

Erin’s film ‘A Little Girl’s War Cry’ deals with the touchy subject of domestic violence through the eyes of a young ten-year old Cook Island girl named Tiare, who shelters herself from reality by taking on the persona of a caped super hero. Tiare deals out justice to wicked monsters in a bid to save her precious Barbie doll. Influence from cultural elements of respect and pride eventually help Tiare to discover not only her identity but also her inner strength. Driven by the power of a mother and child’s love she finds the will to fight back.

Cook Island News

Film Raro tackles domestic violence

January 08, 2013

University of Hawaii film student Erin Lau and her team are excited and proud to have this opportunity to share their craft and collaborate with locals to tell a story that can make a difference.

“Gender equality, women’s rights and domestic violence are important issues for all women around the world including the Pacific,” says Lau.

She adds her film’s point of difference is that it speaks with an indigenous Pacific voice.

Shanghai Daily Newspaper

US students screen short flicks at festival

June 27, 2012

A short documentary about a Hawaiian grandmother in her mid-90s has won first prize for best documentary at the Sino-US Student Shorts Exhibition and Competition at the Shanghai International Film Festival.

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