Filipinos doing great things with their lives in America are in the spotlight of the new documentary series “Out of the Boondocks” released by San Diego State University public media, KPBS.
The six-part docuseries, which premiered on KPBS television during Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month in May, celebrate stories from the Filipino diaspora, of Pinoy creativity and successes amidst a foreign culture through the lens of San Diego’s Filipino artists and innovators.
“Out of the Boondocks” brings light to the Asian-American experience through the city’s Filipino creatives, such as artists covering San Diego in murals, filmmakers bringing cinematic visions to life, and a spoken word poet honing their art, and sharing it with others, and many more.
The term “boondocks” refers to distant places, but its root is a Filipino word for mountain, “bundok”. The duality of the word “represents the hidden strength in the Filipino American experience,” according to the KPBS website.
Filipino-Americans and San Diego natives Rio Villa and Jay Jay Maniquis are the show’s hosts, creators, and producers. Fearless Few Productions produces the show which boasts an all-Asian American team with backgrounds in the creative industry.
The show’s first episode, which premiered on May 5, 2022, features interviews with Filipina-born casting director Kim Heil and Filipino-American actor Angelo Gonzales who talk about their experiences in pursuing creative careers despite the challenges they faced.
Filipina-American Kim Heil is an associate producer of The Old Globe and a casting director at the San Diego Repertory Theatre and an independent casting director.
Born in the Philippines, Heil moved to Jakarta in Indonesia when she was six years old and lived there until she moved to the United States for college. She shares about supporting artists, pushing for Filipino and Asian representation in theater, and educating others on the benefits of working in the creative industry in the interview.
The episode also features Angelo Gonzales, an actor in Los Angeles whose theatre credits include “Macbeth,” “Why Torture is Wrong & The People Who Love Them,” and “You Can’t Take It With You.” He talks about how Filipinos continue to make waves in film and television production in the show.
The episode also spotlights the creatives’ arts-loving Filipino families and how they felt supported by them as they pursued their careers.
“Out of the Boondocks,” airs on Thursdays at 8:30 pm on KPBS TV and the PBS Video App.
Filipino diaspora stories of inspiration were featured in two women-led media organizations based in the United States and the Philippines.
In honor of Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month this May, Nickelodeon’s Blue’s Clues & You host Josh Dela Cruz and his Lola celebrated Filipino pride with a catchy song.
SEND CHEERS in the comments below to the creators of “Out of the Boondocks”, a new docuseries that showcases the creativity and success of the Filipino diaspora living in the United States, and WATCH the first episode of the new show through this link.
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