Rising Star: Sean Baker’s Take Out & Prince of Broadway

Last year I had the opportunity to see Take Out, the authentic and wonderfully compelling story of Ming, a Chinese food delivery man. He borrowed money to make the trip to the US but he’s fallen behind on his regular payments and now the loan shark wants his money. He sends out a couple of goons to collect the $800, which Ming doesn’t have, but between money collected from outstanding debts and a hard night’s work, he may just make it.

I was impressed by Shih-Ching Tsou and Sean Baker’s debut, a film that shares one aspect of the immigrant story while also presenting the “real” New York. The film is well worth a look and lucky for us, it’s now available on DVD care of Kino.

When I spoke to him last year, Sean Baker had completed his next project, a feature titled Prince of Broadway. The story of Lucky, a hustler making a living on the streets of New York, has already made quite the splash at a number of film festivals and if the trailer is any indication, Baker’s follow-up continues in the neo-realist style which blurs the line between documentary and fiction more than most.

With two films, Sean Baker is proving to be a talented up and comer and a director to track. I’ll be sure to share when Prince of Broadway opens theatrically. In the meantime, be sure to add Take Out to your watch list.