I’ve never been more emotionally stressed in my life I just worry about your sanity and ability to do it all You gotta think this is the most expensive coming out video ever. When I told my parents it was shocking. Everything’s closing in on you. We’re running out of time. Am I ever finally gonna be happy? [Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha] [Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha] Today I’m meeting with the other Try Guys. Not only are they considering funding this video We have a really strict timeline on this because I dreamed to get this out in time for Pride. We also have to keep up with our two videos a week schedule And all the huge projects that are releasing during the summer. I’ve written it, I’m directing Choreographing And I’m starring in it. It comes at a time where even if I wasn’t releasing this I would still be pulling multiple all-nighters to get my day-job done. Ned: So this budget is a lot larger than you initially talked about. Eugene: Yes Ned: We have a crane?! Ned: Do we have to have a crane, though? Ned: Kane is straight up on a steadicam… Keith: He’s making awesome shots right now.
Ned: thing right now. Eugene: Everything I think is towards the fact that this is the most important video I will ever produce in my life for the internet. I wanna make sure I honor it with the most powerful way that I can make this statement And, Dad, that involves a crane. Ned: Son. You can have two cranes. How does it feel when you see comments, fans saying, “Oh! No, he’s bi. Oh, he’s pan.” I need to own up to who I am 100% as a person. It’s kind of a weird weight on my shoulders Because there’s so much more I can do as a person who is LGBT but also specifically gay. It’s gonna be like a really big release. There has been just a lot of concealing and withholding, and editing that I have done to protect myself. It’s not like I’m gonna be a different person the next day. It does mean that I don’t have to take a red pen through my life, mark out or tear out pages. Keith: Yeah, I’m excited for everybody to know what we know. Which is that you’re all the wonderful things that you are and also you’re gay. Eugene: Oh! There he is! All: Wowwwww! Eugene: You made it! There’s a lot of really personal reasons why I haven’t explicitly come out. We hold things back because we’re very scared that there’s going to be repercussions. I’m not even really comfortable talking about it right now. But I think I’ll be able to open up more about it later. But I just know that this is the time. I think sometimes you just know. Hi, I’m Cathleen. I’ve known Eugene for a very long time Almost ten years ago He was a server and I was a bartender Working at an upscale dim-sum restaurant. Called “Bao” One day during work I basically pitched him an idea that I wanted him to direct and he was like, “Cathleen, you know you’re being a producer right now, right?” And I was like, “Oh. Well I guess I’m a producer now.” Because this project is so meaningful for him and to be able to come back now, years later where we have a proper team and proper budget and give it the love that it deserves Kane: Uh, Eugene, what’s the meeting about today? The meeting today is with my core production team. We’re gonna go over the basic breakdown of the entire video How the crane that we’re renting is going to move about the space. It is of utmost importance to make sure that the way that I shotlist this is going to be to the T Perfectly timed, perfectly choreographed. Every shot should mean something. From the camera, to the set, to the producing. We all have to be in complete agreement about how to deliver the best message in the most efficient way. And the way that he sees things is so specific to him Even though he has honestly the most detailed shotlist, treatments, with crazy references It’s still impossible to really know what’s going on in his head or how he’s envisioning it Until you’re literally on set seeing it. Every single time I feel like I know what’s going on or like how it’s suppose to look. And then I get on set, I’m like, “Oh. I get it now.” Always like a 100 times better than what I thought it was. This is actually like getting into a warm bed. It’s like I’m returning home. I have always thrived off of design, cinematography, and dance and movement and the emotional interpretation of an idea. This really is the, I guess, exact polar opposite of a vlog. For me that is like returning home. This video is really more like how Eugene is as an artist. And I hope I can come back home like this more often. Kane: What are you most afraid of or nervous about? Eugene: I’m always nervous that when I attempt to do more traditional cinematic projects like this online that the audience might reject it. It’ll be difficult to see if the reasons I was withholding was because I was right about my fears. About who might not accept me anymore. I think I actually like doing these types of projects ’cause it’s so all encompassing for me that I can only focus on making this the best that it can be. And then we’ll see what happens with my own personal life. Kane: I’m curious about that and I think I’m gonna ask you a bit more in the next few days. Eugene: Yeah. Thanks, Kane. Eugene: I think that collar’s great. Eugene: All right, so we have Arianna, who’s doing makeup, on the phone. David & Farren: Hi! Eugene: And then, David, hairstylist extraordinaire. Farren is handling all the wardrobe. As is, apparent with any type of queer expression the styling is one of the most important things And I really wanna send a lot of strong messaging through the way that I look and the way that the other characters look So that is why the dream team is assembled here. The big thing is that we have six looks to breakdown for each scene. And they are essentially color-coded. We can use this time to discuss what is do-able, and also maybe the timing that we need for schedule. Eugene: I’m dying physically and mentally. I’ve never been more emotionally stressed in my life and I think it’s because so much of what is in this is wholly me. When I say that I’m kinda bleeding this video out, it’s not even a baby for me It’s literally just like slice me open and let my guts spill out. I’m just in constant emotional pain right now. Even rehearsal, I have to be the director, I have to be the producer. I have to be in charge and I have to have vision And people have to trust that I’m not gonna break down But it’s all just like stabbing my soul constantly. Like I was always so insecure, I was never 100% confident about myself as a person So to have to kinda trick yourself into being the most confident person as an artist so that people believe in you and they take low-rates to come work with you Like when I say to freak out, When you grab something and feel the weight, I want to see it in everyone’s faces. I had to sell a vision in a way that felt like It was worth their time. Thank you so much! Today when I choreographed, I wasn’t even able to choreograph myself, because I had to figure this out. Which is why I’m a little freaked out, because Weirdly, almost the most important aspect of this is what I do on camera And it is honestly the last thing I’m thinking about, because I have to do so much off of camera This whole week I went home and I just like- I don’t cry, I’m not really someone who cries Off camera: Why don’t you cry ? Eugene: Well, I cried a lot as a little kid All the time My parents told me that I was always very sensitive I could tell if someone was emotionally hurting And I think that just always put me in a weird mood so And I was a very depressed kid So at age thirty-three (laughs) Now, to say that I cried a lot, that was very indicative of just being a, a kid who also got pushed around by everybody Eventually, I did the thing where I hardened my shell and Dad and Mom said I stopped crying and I stopped crying after I was like twelve and I just, didn’t cry after that Off camera: Tell me more about that age Eugene: As a young kid I always thought I was bad, I just thought I was bad, naturally Because of what the church I was in was telling me, because of the society I was in, as a Southern person, or as a Korean When you grow up thinking that you’re bad for some reason, I think that really shifts the way that you look at the world I was never in a position where I had enough support Or education, or confidence in any area, that when someone ridiculed me for either being Asian When people thought I could be gay I was never at the point where I thought they were wrong I had a strong belief that I was not only bad, but I was wrong, there was something wrong with me A lot of my journey was kinda figuring out that I was never inherently a bad person You can put this in the video Kane- I- Am afraid that some people I’m very close to will disown me And not talk to me anymore Because of this video Knowing that someone might be homophobic, and a couple of people could be And that’s hard Kane: Do you think that’s it for everything? Eugene: We’re gonna find out There is also just a reason why Gay is such a toxic word to some people, and I think that Other words, like queer and LGBT mean nothing to some people I think it’s because there’s still people I care about, and there’s still systems I am a part of, that prescribe to that way of thinking It’s hard to express those complexities when you’re so public Ned: When Eugene first started to become popular online, he really put up a wall, and like, a shield Keith: His career has not just been about representing the LGBT community, it’s also about the Asian community It’s also about him, coming from a divorced household I think there’s a lot of things he needed to establish, he was a dominant, Asian producer He needed to show he was a huge for the LGBT culture If you think about ALL the things Eugene is trying to further with his career All the other careers he’s trying to help with his Like, it’s a lot