“Raya and the Last Dragon” star Kelly Marie Tran has teamed up with the film’s director, Carlos López Estrada, to create their own production company called AntiGravity Academy (AGA).
AGA will have separate divisions headed by experienced leaders in their fields. Winsor Yuan, former vice president of film and television at production outfit A Stern Talking To, will head AGA’s film and TV division. Meanwhile, Internet Music Video Database co-founder and Reprobates executive producer Doug Klinger will manage AGA’s short form division, which will produce music videos, commercials and branded content.
To support emerging filmmakers, AGA will also run an incubator beginning next year, to be headed by former Sundance Institute director of Artist Community Abiram Brizuela.
In a joint statement, Tran and López Estrada expressed their excitement in “providing a creative home for emerging filmmakers who are looking for a window into this often insular industry.”
“From our own experiences as young creatives, we understand how invaluable a support system can be to someone who is looking to break in,” the statement read. “We are looking forward to partnering up with the most inspiring independent voices coming from communities that have been historically overlooked and helping them usher their stories into the world.”
Tran, who took a brief hiatus from social media in 2018, re-emerged months later to reveal that she underwent therapy because of all the harassment she received from Star Wars fans for her role as Rose Tico in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”
“It felt like I was just hearing the voice of my agents and my publicity team and all of these people telling me what to say and what to do and how to feel,” Tran was quoted by The Hollywood Reporter as saying at the time. “And I realized, I didn’t know how I felt anymore. And I didn’t remember why I was in this in the first place.”
Tran later signed up for “Raya and the Last Dragon,” noting: “There was a fire that burned inside of me before Star Wars, before any of this. And I needed to find that again.”
AGA projects currently in the works include a biopic on civil rights activist Amanda Nguyen, which will star Tran herself; Dìdi (弟弟), by Sean Wang; and “Kill Yr Idols” by Estrada. Estrada was also recently tapped to direct the upcoming live-action adaptation of “Your Name.”