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Stand-up comedian Jo Koy’s first film features Filipinos in starring roles

Jo Koy Easter Sunday
Ed Araquel/Universal Pictures
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Courtesy Easter Sunday/Facebook
"Easter Sunday"

Stand-up comedian Jo Koy’s first film, "Easter Sunday," was released in theatres on Friday, Aug. 5. It centers on a Filipino family that comes together to celebrate the holiday, and is loosely based on the comic’s own family. The film was conceived after director Steven Spielberg arranged for Koy to meet with his production company.

Jo Koy1.jpg
Courtesy Easter Sunday/Facebook
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Alex J.Berliner/ABImages

It’s one of the first Hollywood movies about Filipinos that features actors with Filipino heritage in the lead roles. The cast includes La Bamba star Lou Diamond Phillips and local girl Tia Carrere. The Conversation caught up with Koy as he was promoting the film on the East Coast.

Koy also says his fourth Netflix special will be released on Sept. 13.

This interview aired on The Conversation on Aug. 5, 2022. The Conversation airs weekdays at 11 a.m. on HPR-1.

Russell Subiono is the executive producer of The Conversation. Born in Honolulu and raised on Hawaiʻi Island, he’s spent the last decade working in local film, television and radio. Contact him at talkback@hawaiipublicradio.org.
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