Searching for Roots in Canton


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    Pre-Trip Scene

    One-Hour HD Documentary (2012)

    Most Americans are immigrants or descendants of immigrants with a rich cultural history. But what happens to one’s cultural identity when they are several generations removed from their roots? Searching for Roots in Canton grapples with this issue for Nathan Fong and Alana Woods Chan, two Chinese Americans, as they go straight to the source, Canton (Guangdong), China, the motherland of most Chinese Americans. Why did their families leave China to be in the U.S. in the first place? What did they do when they got to America? How did they survive?

    Historian and mentor, Al Cheng, has spent over twenty years taking Chinese Americans to China to search for their roots. His passion lies in his belief that, “Strong roots build strong characters, strong characters create strong communities, and strong communities build a strong country. And that’s the basis for world peace.” Al is in charge of finding the exact locations of their ancestral villages. He also accompanies Nathan and Alana as they learn about their family histories and he supports them emotionally as they experience psychological breakthroughs during the trip.

    Viewer Feedback:

    "What a powerful documentary!" - Mayor Ed Lee of San Francisco

    "Great piece and I look forward to its success across the PBS network." - Jack H. Schwartz, CBS Local Media KPIX/KBCW

    "Wow! Searching for Roots in Canton was gorgeous! And so tender and moving." - Patty Zubov, Content Creator, Platonic TV

    "…excellent film!" - Ryan Chahanovich, Producer & Creative Strategist

    "Loved it! Cried happy tears." - Jason Lew, Viewer

    "This was an amazing film. I enjoyed it tremendously. Smiled, laughed and cried." - Kay Speaks, Viewer

    "I wanted to tell you how touched I was by the Roots [Searching for Roots in Canton] Documentary. It was really bold to confront racism and feelings of shame the way you did. It is such a taboo subject but you guys [D3 Productions, Inc.] handled it with a certain elegance and thoughtfulness. Watching Alana, I remember how I felt about my Mexican heritage before and after living in Mexico. It is a huge burden to feel ashamed and the relief in coming to terms with ones own identity is magical. That really came through in the production." - Jude Gabbard, Fashion Designer

    "The Searching for Roots in Canton Preview was fantastic! It was tearful, humorous, and touched everyone in the audience! Great job-Congrats to all that put the preview gathering together!" - Kailey Wong, Viewer

    "I was thoroughly 'thrilled to high heaven' with the premiere of the fantastic film, Searching for Roots in Canton. What an incredible masterpiece it is." - Marjorie Quon, Viewer

    "Loved the documentary, very moving perspective of their rooting experience!" - Angelina Yu, Viewer

    "Wonderful and very moving show." - Wei & Peter Rasmussen, Viewer

    "This program was absolutely wonderful! It was excellent in every particular, and the message was universal. Congratulations to you and everyone involved!" - Carol Peckham, Viewer

    "Wonderful documentary! Moving, sentimental journey to find one's roots, and finally making the connection. The direction and cinematography are both first rate, so is the elegant background music. The 2 leads, Alana and Nathan, deserve much credit. They are articulate, genuine and photogenic. Thanks to Al Cheng and everyone who brought the project off the ground. In fact, it soars." - Louis Chan, Viewer

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    Check your local listings for current schedules.

    To request Searching for Roots in Canton contact the TV Programmer at your local PBS station

    We have received an encouraging and overwhelming response from PBS programmers who have wished to air Searching for Roots in Canton. It is now reaching 40 U.S. States!! See below link for the airing schedule in your area:

    CLICK HERE for TV Airing Schedule


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  • Title: Searching for Roots in Canton    Length: 80 minutes   Format: DVD
    Production Year: 2012
    Price for home use:     $25.00 plus shipping and handling.
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