About 3 years ago I wrote a xanga entry following a particularly pensive night. Recent events of the previous year had lead me to a normal evening in my bedroom reflecting on things (read: people) who have come and gone in my life. I started writing and even went a little overboard by making a chart. After posting it, the response was unexpected. I mean, it was a really long and wordy entry; I didn’t expect people to read it. But it got featured on xanga’s front page (as if that even mattered in 2008, haha), but either way, I thought to myself that I definitely struck a chord.
What’s funny is that I don’t think what I wrote about was that novel of an idea, people always talk about stage of relationships. But I guess the way I broke it down and presented it made it standout. After a few days passed, being in the field that I’m in, I decided to try to turn it into a script. In one night I wrote out 19 pages of a story between a boy and girl and their journey through the chart of stages I had drawn up a few days prior. This was July 2008. And it sat for one year, then another. Each time other Wong Fu work would take priority, and each summer I told myself, ok no really, I’m making time to do this. But it never happened. Finally last Dec I made it final, I would force the time in to make this at the beginning of 2011.
Finally this past March, Wes and Ted worked w/ me for a few days to shoot the 2.5 yr old script (some slight edits thru that period of time). Cathy Nguyen was so sweet and awesome to take her time to play the girl, and last month I finally finished and released it online.
The response was totally unexpected. Without sounding cocky, I knew that w/ our current subscriber/support base, that the short would eventually reach at least 1 million views, but to see it reach that after 1 day, I was totally shocked. Then over the weekend it hit 3 million. In a week, 5 million views. All of us couldn’t believe that a 16 minute drama short film could reach those numbers on YT. I mean, YT is known for 1 min videos w/ cats and crotch hits. And again, I was amazed.
I found it fitting that I come back to xanga, where it started, to update and respond. It’s scary to think that millions of people out there have received my message and opinion of relationships. Sorta makes me scared. We got emails saying that it really harmed their relationships, while other said it saved theirs. Some 50 yr olds and parents sent messages saying how even they were affected. Even my parents (who do watch our videos) were surprised to get this peek into my head.
Hopefully more positive came out of this piece than negative. As I’ve always said from the beginning, I wanted to make this video, not to condemn everyone’s relationships to failure…but to let people know, that if it happens to not work out in the end, you’re not alone, at all. Many people have been there, and there is still some positivity to take from a failed relationship, even if it takes time. (Also, I wrote this as someone in his mid-20s. I don’t think 14 yr olds will really see relationships the way I do, so there’s definitely going to be some misinterpretations of the video, lol.) And beyond bfs and gfs, the message applies to friends as well. We have so many people in our lives who were so close to us for some period of time, but because life happens, we drift. It doesn’t mean those friends aren’t special anymore.
If you haven’t seen it yet, here it is below. “Strangers, again”. And for further commentary on the short film itself, read it here.
This video is dedicated to those strangers in my life. To you, you, you, and you. I still think back often on when our paths were one, and I’m thankful. And I hope where you are (some further than others) that you are thankful too.