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COMIC: Director Jon M. Chu's long journey from home videos to 'In The Heights'

Fred Chao/NPR

Ever since he started shooting home movies with his family's bulky video camera, Jon M. Chu knew he wanted to be a filmmaker. But after directing several Hollywood blockbuster films like G.I. Joe: Retaliation and Now You See Me 2, Jon felt uninspired by the stories he was bringing to the silver screen.

In 2018, he directed Crazy Rich Asians — the first Hollywood film with a majority Asian cast in 25 years — and in 2021, Lin Manuel Miranda's In the Heights.

This comic, illustrated by Fred Chao, is inspired by TED Radio Hour's recent episode, The Artist's Voice.

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/ Fred Chao for NPR
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Fred Chao for NPR

Fred Chao is a freelance illustrator and designer based in California.

The podcast version of this story was hosted by Manoush Zomorodi, produced by James Delahoussaye, edited by Sanaz Meshkinpour. It was adapted for the web by Janet W. Lee and Katie Monteleone.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

LA Johnson is an art director and illustrator at NPR. She joined in 2014 and has a BFA from The Savannah College of Art and Design.
Katie Monteleone is a producer for TED Radio Hour. She started out as an intern for the show in January 2019. After her internship, Monteleone began producing for Life Kit before returning to the TED Radio Hour team in October 2019 as a full-time producer.
Janet W. Lee
[Copyright 2024 NPR]
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