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Jeff Chiba Stearns – Documentary Filmmaker about Being Hapa

Anyone who has seen Jeff Chiba Stearns’ original animation short called “What Are You Anyways?” knows that through the sheer lightness of his delightful personality, he manages to discuss what is a touchy subject, to some, inter-racial marriage, with humor, heart and insight.  Stearns describes himself as being born in Kelowna, British Columbia, of Japanese and European heritage.

In his 2010 film “One Big Hapa Family”, he tackles the subject of his own family and how every ethnic Japanese person in his family after the generation of his grandfather married a non-Japanese.  He describes how this is in line with the trend in Canada for person of Japanese ethnicity to marry outside of it.  The film is re-airing on Seattle TV, Monday night.

This fascinating interview with Jeff Chiba Stearns took place at the 2010 Vancouver Asian Film Festival with an interviewer from SchemaMag.ca.

One of the things that makes Stearns’ creations so compelling is that they are discussing human relations on the level of relationships and trends, rather than politics.  Dealt with on this basis, it has heart and moves the heart.

The trailer for the show can be seen on the KCTS 9 website.   Monday at 10 p.m. on KCTS 9.

For more information about Jeff Chiba Stearns, check out his website.