She Lights Up Well

Detroit, Michigan | Film Feature


Joyce Wu

1 Campaigns |

Green Light

This campaign raised $11,798 for production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

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Sophie, an out-of-work Asian American actress in New York, moves back in with her parents in the suburbs of Detroit, where her hometown is facing a budget crisis and wants to shut down the community theater so she directs a production of Gilbert & Sullivan's "The Mikado" to try and save it.

About The Project

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The Story

I want to address the dearth of films with Asian American characters and strong female protagonists by featuring both in a fun, satisfying, relatable story. While I drew upon my own exploits for Sophie’s story, it’s a common one.  Facing grim job prospects in a flailing economy, so many young people go back to living with their parents in the hopes of saving money and figuring out their lives.  I see this film as a coming-of-age comedy for a generation trying to grow up after going home again.

Sophie’s life isn’t where she thought it would be by now: she’s broke, single and without any professional accomplishments to speak of.  Moving home feels like the ultimate sign of failure, but it’s where she ends up finding herself.  She goes from an insecure, self-defeating actress waiting to be discovered to someone who, in true American fashion, is in control of her own destiny.


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Costs $3,000

Pay our SAG actors the minimum for Ultra Low Budget films!


Costs $2,000

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Costs $4,200

Feed our hungry, hard-working cast and crew!

About This Team

Joyce Wu (Writer/Director/Actor) grew up in the suburbs of Detroit. She wrote, directed, and produced her first stage play at the age of 20. She was a founding member and the literary manager of Mir Productions, an Off-Off Broadway theater company. She was awarded a Maurice Kanbar Institute fellowship and a scholarship from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to pursue her master’s degree in Film Production from New York University’s prestigious Graduate Film program. Her short films have won awards and screened at festivals around the world. 

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