We had the good fortune of connecting with Junwen Yu and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Junwen, what principle do you value most?
I think the value that matter the most to me is to keep doing what you love. It might be hard, because what you love might not be a good way to make a living. But the more you enjoy what you do, the more passion you will have for that. You will meet a lot trouble. If you hate what you do, you will feel miserable and give up. Most part of making animation is tedious and repetitive. It is not like what most people think. The process of making animation is not easy and fun but require endurance and focus. You will always feel your works seems to be meaningless. But if you truly love what you do and value it a lot, then you can always regain your passion and love for it.
That is the reason why I can keep working on my own film. Because all of my film is out of my thought and my own understanding of this world. I feel it is urgent and important to speak it out and make my imagination become real. That is my mission as an artist.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I always want to make a film about dream and death. Two very important elements of everyone’s life. Sometimes, I feel dream is more real than reality. Because reality is actually just a series of facts. It doesn’t really have logic itself. When my friend and my family member died, it just suddenly happens and doesn’t have any meaning in it. Things always won’t come out like what people thought, planed and expected. It is just what it is. I feel the efforts that human put to make everything reasonable and rational is bound to fail. The reasons they gave for life are just for themselves. But dream has its own logic. It shows what kind of person that dreamer really is. And the way dream builds itself is brilliant and beyond human’s rational thought. That is why I feel dream is attractive to me. It reveals something mental and eternal.
I made Sunset City because I want to make something that is personal and I won’t regret. Two main characters show two ways of living status. Sera is like normal people that living their lives but don’t like them. She hides her true emotion in heart until one day it explodes. That is why she hopes world comes to an end. She is not able to end her life at that time. I hope she walks out from this kind of mindset in the end.
There are so many challenges that I met. But I feel the necessity of showing this world, so I have to finish this film.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
In LA, I always went to Arcadia in holiday for Hot pot. It is really wonderful to enjoy hot pot with friends. I also love the park in Los Angles. Sometimes, I drive to a park and walk along. It is a good way to think story.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I really thanks to my mentor in USC. Kathy Smith and Sheila Sofian . Kathy is my first mentor. I like her dream class. She taught me a lot way to collect ideas. I used these technique to record my dreams and put these dreams into my animation.
Sheila guides me finish my thesis film. Sheila is a very responsible and helpful person. I always feel I want to give up because making this film really takes me a lot time. But whenever I feel frustrate, Sheila always helped me and support me. She also helped me cut out the unnecessary part of my film. So that I can finish my film on time.
Also, I should thank my producer Jeremy Boros. He helped me finish this film. I always feel hard to get in touch with people and find them to join my project. Jeremy is a very responsible producer. He helped me a lot and gave me a lot good advice.
Really grateful for all of them without them I can’t make my new film Sunset City.

Website: http://junweny.com/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/junwen-yu-7804b3235/

Other: https://vimeo.com/innersol

Image Credits
Junwen Yu

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