EXCLUSIVE: Andrea Bang (Kim’s Convenience) will exec produce and topline Surrender, an indie drama marking the first feature from writer-director Jess Dang, which has entered production in Los Angeles. Co-starring Gilmore Girls‘s Keiko Agena, the film is one of ten in the fiction space to have recently been selected for fiscal sponsorship through Film Independent’s Fast Track Fellowship Program.
Pic tells the story of Naomi (Bang) a young, Asian American female looking to escape past trauma who falls into the world of blackjack to regain a sense of control, but finds herself addicted to the game. By day, Naomi is successful at her job. By night, she is a high-limit blackjack player. Her compulsive gambling puts her in a secret cycle of shame as she suppresses her internal feelings to appear externally sound, impacting her mental health.
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The project began its life as a short film, also starring Bang and Agena, which was produced in 2021. The following year, the short premiered at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival before going on to land a licensing deal with NBC Universal via Comcast, following its presentation at the Portland Film Festival. Simultaneously, the feature version of Surrender participated as part of the highly selective Fast Track Program. The filmmakers have also been supported by Owning It, a program of the Gotham Film & Media Institute, dedicated to supporting, connecting, and empowering women and non-binary creators and entrepreneurs who break down boundaries in media and entertainment.
Jessica Olthof and Darren Haruo Rae are producing alongside Dang under her Long Lunch Break company banner. To make a a tax-deductible donation to to help the team raise additional funds for post-production, click here.
Best known for her role as Janet on the popular CBC series Kim’s Convenience, Bang has also been seen on ABC’s A Million Little Things, among other shows. Notable film credits include the SXSW romantic drama Stay the Night, Searchlight/Hulu thriller Fresh, and Julius Onah’s Luce opposite Naomi Watts and Octavia Spencer. Up next for her is the Wattpad romance Float to be distributed by Lionsgate.
In addition to Gilmore Girls, Agena has been seen on shows like Prodigal Son, The First, Better Call Saul, Dirty John, and 13 Reasons Why.
Bang is repped by The Characters Talent Agency and Authentic Talent + Literary Management; Agena by Joseph Le Talent Agency and Link Entertainment.
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