Los Angeles

‘Easter Sunday’ is comedian Jo Koy’s heartwarming homage to Filipino American culture

HOLLYWOOD, LOS ANGELES — The new movie “Easter Sunday” is inspired by Jo Koy’s stand-up comedy routine.

He plays a comic and aspiring actor who goes home to the San Francisco Bay area for Easter.

“Easter Sunday” is a funny, heartwarming homage to Filipino American culture. Koy has enjoyed decades of success in stand-up, but the fact that a Filipino-centric film has finally made it to the big screen brings him joy.

“It’s joy into the future. I’m not going to look back at the past anymore. It’s done. It’s behind me,” Koy said. “But, like, here we go. Let’s start. Let’s keep the door open, too. I’m going to stand next to that door. I want to see more people get movies like this.”

And while this film is centric to the Filipino community, the movie’s theme about family is relatable to everyone.

“I’m just hoping this is like ‘Big Fat Greek Wedding’ but with Filipinos,” said co-star Tia Carrere.

Carrere plays Koy’s aunt, Tita Teresa. When she saw the script, Carrere says she cried at the prospect of being able to pay tribute to her own culture for the first time.

“I’ve been Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai… pretty Asian girl who smiles at the white guy, I’ve done it all,” laughed Carrere. “But it’s great to be able to call on my upbringing and all the characters in my neighborhood and my own family and celebrate that. I’m so grateful we’ve come to this place where Filipino Americans can be front and center in a movie.”

“I want us to feel seen,” Koy said. “There’s a lot of Filipinos that live here, and a lot of Asians that live here. And in this movie, you get to see us. And you get to hear about us, and you get to learn a little bit about us, but on top of that you get to relate to us.”

“We are an amazing, funny, loving, crazy, wacky family that happens to be Filipino,” said Carrere.

“Celebrate your own wackiness in your own family! Accept it!” said co-star Lydia Gaston.

“Easter Sunday” is in theaters now.

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