Film

Stories from TD, the Human Bank

Michael Film, Video May 26, 2017
  • Memorial Day Flowers Video 2017

It’s a huge honor for me to work with my amazing colleagues at TD Bank on this Memorial Day video story, featuring three other colleagues – two veterans and one mother/daughter/niece of those who served. I am proud: TD is not only a Great Place to Work, it is also the Greatest Place to Do Great Work (haven’t yet registered for this trade mark:).

On Memorial Day, we remember those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for the liberties we enjoy today. TD Bank is a proud supporter of the Memorial Day Flowers Foundation, sending 35,000 roses to cemeteries from Maine to Florida. Hear from our own Employees why Memorial Day matters, to us all!

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The Most Important Job – Director of Operations

Michael Film, Video December 15, 2016

Whether you are looking for a new job or not, read this job description and think if you are interested, or qualified:

  • Title: Director of Operations
  • The most important job [wow, right?]
  • Requirements/Qualifications:
    • Mobility
    • Work standing up most or all of the time
    • Constantly on your feet, constantly bending over
    • High levels of stamina 
    • Excellent negotiation and interpersonal skills
    • Preferably a degree in medicine, finance, and culinary arts
    • Associate needs constant attention
    • Sometimes have to stay up with associate throughout the night
    • No vacation, actually Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year the work load is gonna go up
    • The position is gonna pay absolutely nothing
  • Lunch? Only when the associate is done with their lunch
  • No break? Absolutely not.
  • Time to sleep? Oh no time to sleep.

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Monkey Film Nominated for an Emmy

Michael Film, Video July 22, 2016

Myestery Monkeys of Shangri-La

Photo by Wild China Film

When I invited my friend Xi Zhinong’s latest documentary, Mystery Monkeys of Shangri-La, to Asia Society for a pre-PBS Nature broadcast theatrical screening on the Earth Day in 2015, I knew this film will remain a piece of gem. This past week, I learned that it received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Nature Programming. I am proud I helped bring this project to American audiences on three occasions, once in New York and twice in Washington, D.C.

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Evian Baby Bay

Michael Film, Video May 3, 2016

Awfully creative and cute:

The most amazing surf spot in the world: all surfers are babies!

More here, one raking in 120 some million views:

 

And here’s the behind the scenes, or known as “the making of…”

Gravitational Waves Explained

Michael Film, Video February 14, 2016

Wow, humanity is awesome. Here are some of the great explanations about this major breakthrough, a few video clips (the first TED talk where you could hear the sound of the gravitational waves, starting 7;20-7;44) and a Chinese social post sum-up in a visual way, although I don’t know whether it’s appropriate to embed a real graphic in the end.

Now this below is the juicy part, thanks to a Chinese friend’s WeChat post, which I think explains the discovery of gravitational waves pretty on point:

There was that legendary love-making episode over a billion years ago; a billion years later, we are finally seeing the wrinkled bed sheet.
十亿年前的一场风流韵事,十亿年后我们终于看到了那张被滚皱了的床单。

Doc Film “Death By Design” Coming Soon

Michael Film, Video January 7, 2016

A few years in the making, this investigative documentary film explores the unintended environmental, health and social consequences of our addiction to our digital devices. Veteran filmmaker Sue Williams presents the other, ugly side of the electronics industry, which may sound as clean as a biotech lab. I helped with the film as a China producer, and went with a camera to China’s e-waste capital, Guiyu in Guangdong Province. Here below is a reel, much more than a trailer:

 

Death by Design poster

Poster of documentary film “Death By Design” by Sue Williams, for which I was a China producer. Click/Tap for Facebook page.

Web & Video: China Air Daily

Michael Data & Graphics, Film, Photo, Video December 1, 2015

Flying back between Berkeley, CA and Beijing, China on graduate school projects, an idea struck me to record air quality with a picture every day, initially out of a friend’s apartment window. Then that project grew and took roots at Asia Society and now China Air Daily tracks five cities in China and the U.S. on an hourly basis.

Here below are two videos about China’s notorious air pollution issue I produced with Emmy Award winning studio MediaStorm:

 

Here below is the homepage of the site, a visual record of daily air quality in China and the U.S., featuring Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, New York City and Phoenix:

pic chinaairdaily home

Homepage of China Air Daily, click/tap to visit full site

I write in The Atlantic: A Stunning Visualization of China’s Air Pollution

The debate over whose statistics are most “accurate” can be confusing — how to sort out truth from spin? That’s why a group of us at the Asia Society decided to launch China Air Daily, a website that provides up-to-date information on air pollution in the country’s largest urban sectors, and even compares them to major cities from elsewhere in the world.

I write in Foreign Policy: Watch China’s Silent Assassin in Action

For the past eight years in Beijing, as well as four years spent in other Chinese cities, I have recorded impressions of daily air quality by taking photographs from fixed points. I thought I had seen the worst smog a developing country had to offer — then came the so-called “Airpocalypse” of January 2014. Finally, in March 2014, the Chinese government declared an all-out “war against pollution.” For a few months, as my photo archive suggests, Beijing’s air quality appeared to improve. But this winter, it is getting bad once again:January 15 saw an AQI measurement near 500.

Forbes: How Dirty Are China’s Skies? A Daily Photo Archive Shows The Truth

Air quality improved after the Olympics, and there have been good days since, but why August was this bad is something of a mystery. Trying to get to the bottom of the air-quality-in-China issue is the work of China Air Daily, a web site produced by the Asia Society’s Center on U.S.-China Relations. The site is produced by the journalist-programmer Michael Zhao. China Air Daily publishes near-hourly snapshots several times a day. You can see how blue it was for most of March 2011.

Forbes: Asia Society Has Opened Window on China’s Environment

One of its useful devices is the China Air Daily site, which allows Web users to track the sometimes awful state of smog in three Chinese metropolises, as well as two in the U.S.

Last but not least, I blog about the issue on ChinaFile.com and here are some slides from the blogging:

China Air Watch