From acclaimed writer, producer and restaurateur, Eddie Huang, premieres his directorial debut BOOGIE, the coming-of-age story of Alfred “Boogie” Chin, a basketball phenom living in Queens, New York, who dreams of one day playing in the NBA. The film appeared in theaters last Friday (Mar. 5) and we were able to sit down with Huang to discuss the film’s inspiration, Pop Smoke’s posthumous acting debut and the New York culture displayed within the film.
Alfred Chin, a.k.a. Boogie, a Chinese-American high school senior has big dreams of playing basketball in the league, but first he must contend with young love, an overbearing mother with a different future in mind, and his closest rival Monk, a local legend with hoop skills superior to his own.
High-school student Boogie, portrayed by Taylor Takahashi making his feature-film debut, is determined to score a coveted spot in the NBA, which was once a rarity for an Asian-American. Boogie pursues the college scholarship track while his overbearing mother plots another path for him with the help of a Chinese recruiter. Boogie continues to hone his skills on the cutthroat basketball courts of Lower Manhattan while navigating high-school commitments, a burgeoning romance with his classmate Eleanor, portrayed by Taylour Paige, and parental strife at home. Boogie finds himself in a relentless battle for his future resulting in a New York City street ball face-off with the number-one ranked player Monk, played by the late Brooklyn rapper Pop Smoke, making his acting debut.
The film written and directed by, Eddie Huang, whose best-selling memoir on Asian-American family life, Fresh Off the Boat, became a hit ABC sitcom. Huang is a serial entrepreneur with his hands tied to many different endeavors including his Manhattan restaurant Baohaus and Vice show Huang’s World, whichplaced him in the food and travel zeitgeist.
Though our conversation was brief with the multi-hyphenate creative, we managed to speak with Huang to kickoff his birthday and the exciting news of his movie BOOGIE, which is out now in theaters. Watch our interview with BOOGIE writer and director Eddie Huang.