Behind the Recorder: Wong Fu

Wong Fu by Melly Lee^^ Photo by the ever-lovely and ever-inspiring Melly Lee — the only girl I know who’d voluntarily spend the night in a subway station. ^^

A few weeks ago, after a long day at YouTube Nation, I found myself wandering through a Pasadena office building in search of the Wong Fu headquarters. Wong Fu Productions consists of three filmmakers — Wes Chan, Phil Wang and Ted Fu —  who have been making videos together for over ten years. As one of the first groups to utilize YouTube, Wong Fu has become one of the major power players on the platform and a true inspiration to the Asian American community.

After a bit of wandering and sneaking in behind people who actually worked in this building, I found Wes and Phil  debating with their manager about upcoming film dates. My first thought: They’re much taller in person and why is a Muppet sitting in their hallway.

There is always a surreal feeling when meeting creators  YouTube. Unlike their traditional media counterparts, YouTube creators have built their careers on the idea being themselves and allowing fans intimate access into their personal lives. Turns out, this is both true and false.

While in real-life Wes and Phil aren’t as over-the-top crazy as in their videos, in-person, they are just as genuine and down-to-earth as I had hoped. I first began watching Wong Fu during my freshmen year at UC Irvine due to the group’s popularity among the Asian American community on my campus. During our hour and a half interview, Wes and Phil were welcoming, witty, and best of all, they bickered like an old married couple about what could be considered a “real” bucket list item and their first impressions of each other. All in all, it was the perfect first interview to get back on the writing horse.

So thank you Wong Fu for being truest of gentlemen. The world could use more creators like you.

Check out the full feature here.

^^ I personally cried through most of this video. Cheers to Ellen Page for her incredible call to action and coming out speech. The world has been made better by your fearless words and profound thanks to the HRC. ^^

^^ Dear TomSka, I promise to love your cheeky videos always. With much YouTube love, Carly ^^

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