In spring 2012, Little Mao premiered at three sold-out screenings at the TIFF Kids Film Festival in Toronto before enjoying an extensive road trip to Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Colorado, San Diego, Seattle and as far as Puerto Rico. The closest Mao got to the Motherland was Singapore. Mao played many home games in southern Ontario, returning to Toronto for an encore, Peterborough, Sudbury, Brantford, Kitchener-Waterloo and Hamilton.
During that time, Little Mao entertained sold-out audiences of kids and grown-ups alike, won awards and found new friends. "I tip my cap to all my comrades on and off the field," declared a tearful Chairman Bobby who waved his green Mao hat. "Farewell and good luck."
The filmmakers wish to thank our funders Bravo, the Ontario Arts Council and the National Film Board. Special thanks to the parents of our cast, our hardworking crew, all the festivals who hosted our film, and the filmmakers' spouses, partners and families.
|TIFF Kids' sold-out screening, April 15, 2012: Left to right: Ben Prystawski, Kyle Wong, Kevin Wang (as Little Mao), Alexis Thomas (rear), Ariyena Sorani (in green), Joshua Budd, Brian Obonna (rear), Charlotte Herie & Allan Tong (photo: Mira Budd)|
|Cinefest Sudbury, September 2012: Allan toasting with POV magazine's lovely Marsha Cummings|
|Chicago International Children's Film Festival, October 2012: at Chess Records, 2120 South Michigan Avenue, the home of the Chicago blues|
|Chicago International Children's Film Festival, October 2012: at the legendary Facets Cinema with fellow filmmaker, Julio & Leslie Cabrera|
|Asian-American International Film Festival, New York, August 2013: with When I Walk's Jason DaSilva. Allan first met Jason at the Documentary Fellowship Program at 2012 Sundance. Photo taken at closing gala at Asia Society on Park Avenue|
|August 2011: filming on Perry Wong's front lawn on a humid Sunday afternoon (photo: Perry Wong)|
|Toronto's ReelWorld Film Festival, April 2013: Allan with Katie Chats during an online interview|
|TIFF Kids, April 2012: OMNI-TV's Jeffrey Lee interviews Kevin Wang in Mandarin; Kevin was a pro|
|August 2011: The Little Red Guards between takes in a Scarborough baseball diamond (photo: Babriela Pope)|
|Hamilton Film Festival, November 2012: Opposing Team Player Tia Ng (far left) during a spirited post-screening Q&A; HFF programmer Nathan Fleet in crouching, far right (photo: Des Ng)|
|TIFF Kids, April 2012: at the world premiere, Allan's nephew Eli, dad Poy, and brother-in-law Jeff Low (photo: Cathy Tong)|
|TIFF Kids, April 2012: director's self-portrait at the TIFF Kids' Playstation at the Bell Lightbox|