Who We Are
What do a rescuer of thousands of stray dogs, an award-winning female cinematographer, and Time magazine’s Asian hero of 2004 all have in common? They were ostracized by Korean society for being an ardent animal rights activist, the only female cinematographer working in TV, and Korea’s first celebrity to come out as gay.
But fortunately, WE are also the proud leading actress, director of photography, and producer of the short film, Pepper. With a cast and crew hailing from various faiths, sexual orientations, and a dozen different countries, we believe that our process has been as multicultural and diverse as the result you will witness on screen.
Jayil Pak, Writer / Director
Growing up in a family of dramatists in the East Village of Manhattan, Jayil wrote and directed his first play at the age of 14. After graduating from NYU in 2008 with a degree in film production, he has worked as a director and editor of commercials, music videos, and short films in both the US and South Korea. Jayil was nominated for the Silver Dragon at the Krakow Film Festival for his first short, The Housewife (2014), starring Ye Ji-Won. His second short, Pepper (2018), was shortlisted by the Lexus Short Films competition and premiered at the Cleveland International Film Festival in April 2018.
Lee Yong Nyeo, Lead Actor
A household name in South Korea, Lee gained prominence as a character actor in film and theater and for her regular supporting roles in Park Chan-wook films. Some of her notable projects include The Handmaiden (2016), The Wailing (2016), Alice in Earnestland (2015), Manshin (2014), Night Fishing (2011), and I'm a Cyborg, But It's Okay (2006). She is also an ardent animal rights activist, providing a personal animal sanctuary for over a hundred homeless dogs while frequently protesting the Korean government for animal rights reform.
After graduating from NYU with a BFA in Cinema Studies, Aaron worked as an editor at MTV and in acquisitions at Sony Pictures Classics. In 2012, he founded his own production company, Baby Volcano Films, focusing on nonprofit projects. His company has a comprehensive list of clientele including the National Eating Disorders Association and the Horticultural Society of New York. Currently, he is a freelance commercial editor and VFX artist for ad agencies in NYC. His first feature-length film Boblo Boats: A Tale of Two Sisters, a hybrid documentary starring Motown legend Martha Reeves, is scheduled for release in 2020.
Hong Seok-Cheon, Executive Producer
As the first openly gay actor in the Korean entertainment industry, Hong is considered a prominent figure in the LGBTQ+ rights movement in South Korea. After facing public scorn and being blacklisted by the entertainment industry for coming out in 2000, Hong has since regained prominence as a television personality and successful restaurateur. In 2004, Hong was selected by Time magazine as one of Asia's Heroes for his gay rights activism in South Korea. In 2020, Hong plans to run for district head of Korea's Yongsan district to become the first openly gay Korean in office.
Won Soon Ae, Cinematographer
One of less than a handful of female cinematographers working in South Korea's entertainment industry, Won has shot a variety of commercial projects all across the world. From K-pop music videos to Chinese variety shows, Won's repertoire of work spans over 20 years and seven continents. A prominent Korean cinematographer working in TV, music videos, and commercials, Won is also a passionate supporter of human rights and independent cinema.