Monday, November 23, 2009

End of 2nd semester

Second semester came and went just like that. I've gained a lot of weight from my foodie documentary, I've made great friends with the best triad partners in the world, I learned what it meant to collaborate, give constructive feedback, TAKE constructive feedback, and hustle.

An upperclassman said to me that no one comes out of 508 with a good film - you come out with a reputation. I know this to be true. The first semester was all about getting to know each other, being on your best behavior. By the second semester, you're already in your groups and you emerge as a filmmaker. Perhaps a more positive way to say this is that when you come out of 508 you have formed your identity as a filmmaker.

I always knew I wanted to be a director but after this semester, I'm pretty sure this is where I am most comfortable being myself and the position that invigorates me the most. I definitely wouldn't mind producting or even cinematography (though I definitely need more training in the latter). But, as it stands, I think directing is my calling.

So, for next semester, I signed on to co-produce a 547 documentary called "Polar Opposites," directed by the lovely and talented Caitlin Starowicz, who happened to be my SA last semester. I'm so excited to embark on a semester long adventure into pole dancing, women empowerment, and making a great documentary. We're crewing up by this Wednesday, which is super stressful but also really fun. I can't wait to have a full crew so we can all go bond together.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Happy Halloween!!!

So for this year, my bf and I were torn between going as John and Kate Gosselin or Kanye and Taylor Swift.

My bf didn't want to buy Ed Hardy merch and we wanted to save money this year. I looked through my closet and I knew I had the outfit for Taylor Swift. All I had to do was buy the wig and the trophy. Introducing Jin Swift:

Glamour shot #1Glamour shot #2 w/ light sabre

Bf bought the glasses and the heart.

We hit the Yelpoween Elite party at the Viper Room. Free vodka drinks and beer until 8:30pm. We got there around 8pm so we didn't get to take full advantage but it was alright.

Here I am with my zombie hipster yelping friend.

And a vampire.

I thought we were friends!!

Waiting outside the viper room after the party.

Next, we hit the USC film school party. Of course, we rocked it out. There was a fog machine, an awesome dj, dancing and talking and even a photo set up to take dumb pictures!

Those really good pics are not online yet but here are a few shots I got from my friends and from my own camera.

Hanging with Darth Maul.

The ladies of SCA...well, a few of us, anyway.

Here we are posing like we wont the Olympics.
Represented countries:

Bolivia, U.S.A., Turkey

Red White and Blue!

With a pirate lover.
With best

Halloween is over but I think I'm keeping those contacts. Man, were they blue! I had a ton of fun on Halloween, ESPECIALLY because I made an effort to avoid the horror of LA traffic through west hollywood. Two years of We-ho parade was good enough for me.

That was a great weekend but now I must focus on sound editing, then shooting Joel's film. I need to learn cinematography before Friday night.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Cut the Fat - fight scenes/getting sick on set

(Ray, Grace, Ben)

Hey guys, I'm still recovering from the flu as I write this. I'm still so amazed that everything came together in the way it did. We had three overnight shoots from 10pm-6am and that second night I thought we were definitely going to go over. The sun was peaking into the horizon but we got our last shot in before 6:30am.

I'm so proud of the cast and crew for sticking it out. I know that half of them were sick, including myself. But, some amazing things were done in those three nights. My actors and actresses dedicated themselves to stunts practice 3 times or more a week for two weeks in order to do this fight scene. We had awesome stunts coordinators, one amazing double, and really awesome clothes, makeup and hair.

A lot of research went into the look of this film. I spent hours pouring over youtube videos, Asian pop star sensations, video games and cartoons. I was inspired a lot by Michelle Phan's videos as well. If you don't know her videos, they're addictive and fun to watch.

I had an awesome stylist, Mika, who helped me put the wardrobe together. She's a really talented designer who has her own line called Cuore. I buy a lot of stuff from her because she makes everything by hand, it's cute & unique AND they make great gifts. Check out her online store at

All the clothes were donated by Fashion Max, minus the dad's king costume & mom's ref shirt, which I rented from Universal's costume dept.

Here are a few of my favorite shots:

All photos by Alan Kwan.

Credits list:
Writer/Director: Jin Yoo-Kim
Producer: Joel Townsend
Cinematographer: Neil Williams
Production Sound: Joel Townsend
Editor: Joel Townsend
Sound Design: Jin Yoo-Kim
Composer: Taylor Hollyer
Sound Mixer: Valen Hernandez
Action Consultant: Ron Yuan
Action Design: Mike Wilson
Action Director: Sonny Sison
Stunt Coordinator: Kerry Wong
Stunts double: Marissa Labog
1st Assistant Director: David Ngo
Assistant Camera: Justin Madriaga
Set Photographer: Alan Kwan
Makeup Artist: Laura Monteleone
Hair Stylist: Max Lam
Stylist: Mika Yamamura
Production Assistant: Panida Rzonca, Mira Ahn, Scott Ackerlund, and Paul Rader

Ray Chang...Dad
Clarissa Park...Mom
Aiko Tanaka...Esther
Junko Goda...Sarah
Grace Su...Grace
Ben Kim...Henry
Mike Moh...Theo
Clara Juhn...Mina

508 faculty:
Nina Sadowsky
Jeff Lengyel
Jeff Crum
Kenny Hall
Robert Miller

508 SA's:
Thenmozhi Soundararajan
Dennis Castello
Ali Mansuri
Katie Walker

Special Thanks:
The Yoo Family
Joseph Camerota
Fashion Max

Monday, October 19, 2009

Cut the Fat – house scenes

the house
Originally uploaded by jinyookim2004
Last weekend, we shot the “reality” house scenes. I was going for a Korean drama look and I’m pretty sure I succeeded through my grandmother’s house. Her family room is literally the perfect manifestation.

I also wanted to tie in the sister’s looks with strong dark eyebrows. Their wardrobe was to make them look pedigree. That is, all the sisters except Mina, the blacksheep of the family. The dad wears a bahama mama shirt to reflect that he is “celebrating” his birthday and to visually signify irony against his moody disposition. The mom wears the stereotypical polo with black pants. If only she had pink crocs!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Location Scouting

So we got our cast and location! Here's a few location scouting pictures I took:

The "warehouse" where the action sequence will be taking place. Imagine you are seeing each picture to the right of the previous picture.

This is pretty exciting. All the stunts are being worked out now and the costume and makeup are coming along nicely! We just need PA's to help us!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Casting Call for my short film

So we're wrapping up with Neil's short "Butterscotch" and now we're in pre-production for my short which is tentatively titled "Cut the Fat."

I'm holding auditions for all the parts this Thursday night and a second date on Saturday morning (or Sunday...second audition date is TBD).

Here is the breakdown:

Title: Cut the Fat
Logline: A man has to defend his honor, win over a wife, and protect his unborn child by gaining the respect of a man who detests him the most - his future father in law.

Auditions are at USC this Thursday, September 24th, 2009 from 6pm-11pm. If you cannot make this time, please note this in the email you send to and we will schedule you for a time this weekend.


Theodore: mid-late 20's. Theodore will go through anything to marry Mina, even if it means physically overtaking his future father in law. Theo will be using modern fighting styles to overtake the old man. These fighting styles may look more like UFC fighting style and some action film elements.

Dad: Korean man in his 40's-late 50's. Very traditional, conservative and from the old world. He's stuck in a time period and mentality that doesn't exist even in modern-day Korea anymore. He wants to make sure that his future son in law has balls to protect his daughter from nature, foe, and random acts of violence from street gangs. Although he's 1st generation, he's made a name for himself in academia with several published literature and is a professor of English literature. He's an expert martial artist (or other fight genre).

Mom: Korean woman in her 40's. Adaptable, shrewd, funny, and has very good intuition. Can tell right away when something is wrong and is immediately thinking of ways to solve problems.

Henchman #2: expert killer, esp at hand to hand combat. knows many forms of martial arts.

Martial Arts girl: expert killer with style and sass. Might wear traditional martial arts outfit, or a variation of it.

If any of these roles interest you, please submit your headshot/resume to and hopefully we will see you at the auditions!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

End of Project 1's first weekend of Shooting

It's 2:41am and I'm still up from the coke I drank driving home. I'm blogging to update a little on our progress. We filmed Neil's film on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday. We were at Echo Park Lake for two of those days and then at Wurstkuche and Grand Ave. It's very LA and very whimsical. I'm in love with the story and the visuals that accompany it. Next weekend, we will be shooting the fantasy sequences, which will have more choreography, dramatic lighting, and surrealistic qualities. I'm pretty stoked about that.

Some problems we ran into while shooting:
  • We lost a location and an actor very last minute but we hustled and got a location and an actor that ended up working (better) for the film.
  • Traffic was blaring at Echo Park Lake. Note to self: do not film there if there is a lot of dialogue.
  • Little Tokyo is relatively quiet on a Sunday morning until 8:30am. After that, traffic patterns are crazy, especially on an intersection like where Wurstkuche is located, where 4 streets meet.
  • Property managers of buildings in DTLA's financial district are extremely militant in keeping people off the property. We had to be on the sidewalk and if we ever spilled over to their property, security would come to move us. No wonder I couldn't get permission to film there.
  • We were one of four filmmakers on Grand Ave. on Sunday over labor day weekend shooting a scene. Everyone had the same idea as us.
  • Parking on Grand Ave. was unexpectedly horrible. We were expecting some delays from parking but we figured it was a Sunday and over labor day weekend but someone closed down the entire street and there were no parking 1pm-10pm on Sunday only signs everywhere. What luck! We had to park a few blocks away.
  • We had a prob with the batteries in the camera on our first day. We left it to charge in the rec/maintenance center at Echo Park but when we went to get it, it was closed and we were locked out. Luckily, an awesome classmate by the name of Josh, brought over a spare and SPARED us from not being able to shoot. We got the batteries unscathed the next day.
  • We also ran into a media card problem but we petitioned to use our 3rd card this weekend since the following weekend's footage will definitely all fit into one card. We were approved.
  • We were told that we are not allowed to use any 35mm lens adaptors. This news came really late into the game, AFTER our first weekend of shooting. We personally were going to rent one for the following weekend's shoot in order to accentuate the differences in reality in a cinematic style but we cannot do that anymore. I feel really bad for the people who already shot more than half their movies using the 35mm lens adaptors because they will most likely have to fight this against the administration, which is more work for them.
And for the good stuff:
  • We ended up filming at all our locations for free. We didn't even have to pay for permits due to the rule of three clause at Film LA and the nice people the locations who were way more than generous to us.
  • We saved a lot of money on props and food so we're still under budget unless we rent out expensive equipment for next weekend.
  • We have a consistent PA that came and will be coming to all the shoot dates. This is so incredibly helpful, especially when most of the crew members usually consist of other students who are all wrapped up in their own work. It's good to know people who can devote time and energy and consistency to help out who are not students.
  • We got some good wild lines using the DPMD sound kit, which will prove to be immensely helpful once I start editing.
  • The makeup artist was awesome, fast, and reliable. I hope to work with her again.
  • Of course, my partners were also awesome. They were diligent, positive, and professional.
Pics from the set:

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Week 1 of 2nd Semester @ USC School of Cinematic Arts

Film school part deux finally started this week...or shall I say, last week? We started classes this week but we've been meeting for that last week or two to get our first project off the ground. In this semester, we are divided up into trio's and each person wears a different hat per project. For example, I am producing, editing, and doing the production sound for the first project. For the second project, I am writing, directing, and doing the sound design. For the last project, I am doing the cinematography.

We don't get to choose the people we work with nor the order we want to go. I've heard a lot of people who took 508 in the past warning about working in these trio's and how it can get really heated. I personally couldn't have asked for better partners so I doubt that anything out of the normal would come between our group but it's good to keep in mind that we still should maintain respect and an honest line of communication. The three of us are really different (music lover, zombie lover, drama lover) but we all love food! But, it's still important not to get overzealous or hot-headed nor stray too far to be a doormat.

For example, if I want Korean tacos, I should not be afraid to speak up and if any of my partners would prefer to eat at a Japanese style burger truck, I shouldn't get offended.

In fact, I should just get both. =D Not like I can even attempt to lose the weight I gained last semester doing that fattening documentary.

Now that film school has started and I'm in class from 9am-5pm Mondays & Wednesdays, 7pm-10pm on Tuesdays, 9am-12pm on Fridays, I can kiss my social life good bye. Before I do, a quick trip down memory lane for the best of summer 2009:

With Panida @ Yelp Elite clothing swap and cocktails at the W hotel

Winning a $75 gift certificate to Crustacean @ the Blogger Prom

Redeeming my free lunch @ Crustacean

Mendocino Farms' sandwiches at the Project By Project's event, Plate by Plate

My first limo ride ever sponsored by

The Judges @ the Korean BBQ Cookoff

The Contestants @ the Korean BBQ Cookoff

Yelp Elite Party: Spa Luce (waiting for my free facial)
Free food @ Yelp Elite's Spa Luce party

@ Yelp Elite's Spa Luce, hanging out

Dinner @ Golden State (Burger & Salty Chocolate beer float)

Needless to say, my summer days of cheap thrills and gorge fests are over... until December anyway. I had to cancel many events already, even a sweet trip up north for a food event because I am filming that weekend. Slowly, my nights out are being replaced by nights in to produce, and my parties are being replaced by sleep. But, all is well in the land of 508 because there's nothing I'd rather do than to eat, sleep, and breathe film.

Week 1 is almost over and we're 90% done in locking down our location for project 1, and we already have our cast (as of now). Things change rapidly in this business but for the time being, I am happy enough to let myself rest watching a Netflix movie I have not touched since January.