The Curse of Quon Gwon: When the Far East Mingles with the West

The Curse of Quon Gwon: When the Far East Mingles with the West

(1916)

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Synopsis

The Curse of Quon Gwon is the oldest known Chinese-American film and one of the earliest American silent features made by a woman. Only two reels of the film survive, and no intertitles are known to exist, making it difficult to parse out the exact plot. An article in the July 17, 1917 issue of The Moving Picture World states that the film "deals with the curse of a Chinese god that follows his people because of the influence of western civilization." The film also touches on themes of Chinese assimilation into American society. Formally premiering in 1917, no distributor was willing to purchase a Chinese-American film without racial stereotypes. Considered a devastating financial failure, the film was only screened two more times until its rediscovery in 2004. Preserved by the Academy Film Archive in 2005.

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Genres

Drama

Runtime

35min

Production country

United States

Director

Marion E. Wong

Cast

Violet Wong
The Bride (uncredited)
Marion E. Wong
The Unkind Woman (uncredited)
Harvey Soo Hoo
The Groom (uncredited)
Chin Shee
Elderly Woman (uncredited)