Q&A – Quan Tran


Quan Tran’s short film Tro Ve (Homecoming) was screened at AAFFN.  The film was dedicated to  Ma Chau, the director’s late aunt and his journey to Vietnam to grant her wish to have her ashes over the ocean.

1. Can you describe your interest in films and how that fits in with Dragon Vision Productions?

Growing up, I love watching my idols like Bruce Lee, Jacky Chang, Sylvester Stallone, Sean Connery and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Perhaps the one thing they have in common is the rush of actions, and battles between good and evil. DVP aims to raise the bar for the Asian Australian film industry to a larger scale, to hopefully produce mainstream action movies.

Quan Tran

2. What led you to make the video for Tro Ve in Vietnam? What are your hopes in sharing it with audiences?

The making of Tro Ve was initially a personal project. I wanted to share my experience of this monumental event with my family, especially those who were unable to attend.

I have decided to share these moments with the audience, in the hope that the viewer will see life in a brighter light. Life may be difficult at times but everyone needs to know that it is also full of opportunities, waiting to be grasp before it is too late.

3. In what ways do you think Asian Australians make stories that a range of people might connect with it?

Asian Australians have a diverse cultural understanding that will assist them in expressing issues such as sense of belonging, family values, and tolerance of cultural differences that a great range of people can relate to because Australia is such a diverse and multicultural country.

4. What Asian Australian films, actors or filmmakers have been influential to you?

I have to say Maria Tran, she so passionate, and a great team player.

5. Please describe some of your recent career highlights and challenges?

Tre Vo was my very first short film in late 2011. I had to learn everything from scratch, which was time consuming as I have a fulltime job. It was screened in Sydney and Melbourne, I attended on both occasions to see the audience’s reaction and I was humble to receive great feedbacks.

As a new filmmaker the hardest challenge was putting my ideas together through modern technology. I had to learn everything from sound to video editing and more, it is not as simple as picking up the camera, point and shoot.

6. What are some of your reflections on the AAFFN in terms of how it fits in with your own visions for the screen?

I feel that AAFFN has built the bridge by uniting Asian Australian filmmakers/actors from all over Australia and perhaps overseas. As it is tough to make it into the mainstream TV, through AAFFN, we are able to share and learn from each other experiences. This will allow our work to spread widely across Australia and overseas, and ultimately one day we will make it to mainstream TV. Knowledge is power.

A still of Maria Tran, photo taken by Quan Tran

7. What are you working on next?

In the near future I am planning to travel to Vietnam. I would love to immerse myself in a different environment where I can experience more and learn more from such a culturally rich country, which will one day help me become a better director/producer/actor.

Indigo Willing

Author: Indigo Willing

Dr Indigo Willing OAM is one of the former co-conveners of the AASRN, a past contributor to PERIL Magazine and one of the current co-convenors of the Asian Australian Film Forum and Network (AAFFN). She is also a lecturer in sociology, researcher with interests in both migration and youth studies, keen skateboarder, and long-time volunteer in the inter-country adoptee community, where she was awarded a Medal in the Order of Australia.

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