NOVEMBER 23, 2022
CAN | 8 minutes | 2021
Drama short film directed by Kaitlyn Lee
Starring Maki Yi, Jennifer Cheon
Not My Age
When a young-at-heart Korean Grandma breaks her leg on a nightly adventure with her Granddaughter, she fights for one more spray paint extravaganza in the dead of night.
CineAsian Films (CAF): What was the inspiration behind Not My Age?
Kaitlyn Lee: Not My Age was inspired by coming-of-age films like Lady Bird and Perks of Being a Wallflower, as well as the works of Asian film legends like Hirokazu Koreeda. We really wanted to capture a sense of nostalgia, spontaneity, and warmth while also hitting on notes of sadness and longing through the visual style and performance.
Originally, the film was meant to focus on the Granddaughter’s character and her journey of growth. However, as I grappled more with the idea of youth and growing up, I realized that we never really stop growing up. This coming-of-age film focuses on Grandma Lee and her struggles to come to terms with her age.
CAF: What were some of the biggest challenges you faced during production?
Lee: This film was my introduction to the world of film. Completed through Vancouver’s annual Mighty Asian Movie-Making Marathon, I was given the opportunity to be on set for the first time (and as a director at that!). It was a huge challenge for me as I was unsure of what to expect and what to do, but I was blessed to have the support of my brother Peter Lee – the Director of Photography – and my amazing team and gracious actors. We were able to make some work together that I’m really proud of and I was able to lean into the story, characters, and my collaborators to give the piece direction when I felt lost.
CAF: What do you hope people can take away from watching this film?
Lee: I hope that people can relate to the characters in the film and that they can feel seen in whatever they’re going through at whatever stage of life. After all, we all have our own coming-of-age story going on. At its core, our film features living and experiencing life’s joys, pains, and uncertainties. We hope that you are touched by Grandma Lee’s journey and are reminded that you are not alone.
CAF: Are you working on anything new?
Lee: Nothing specific on the horizon for me at the moment! This past summer I co-directed a short film with my brother called Food From Ah Lan which explores nostalgia through the connection to food, so you can keep an eye out for that! Presently, I am focusing on finishing my Sociology degree at the University of British Columbia. Can’t wait to see where the path of life leads!
Not My Age is one of the many great projects shared with CineAsian Films through our submissions process. If you’d like to join them, submit your project.
Director, Writer: Kaitlyn Lee
Producer: Cathy Huynh
Cinematographer: Peter Lee
Editor: Kevin Jin Kwan Kim
More from Kaitlyn Lee: Food From Ah Lan