Actor James Kyson Lee, most famous for his role on NBC’s “Heroes” television show, will collaborate with San Francisco-based film director Henry J. Kim on an independent feature film that is thought to be the first joint film project between San Francisco and Seoul production companies.

Kim will direct a short prelude film, titled “No Rest for the Righteous,” starring Lee in San Francisco that will start shooting on Dec. 16. The short film will set up the untitled feature film.

Through the collaboration between South Korean and Asian American filmmakers and actors, Kim and Lee hope to spur more opportunities to showcase Korean American and Asian American films and artistic projects in South Korea and other Asian countries.

“The film and entertainment industries in Seoul, Hong Kong and Tokyo have been incredibly successful in influencing their American counterparts,” said Kim, who is also co-founder of Empty Kingdom, one of the leading media arts websites, “which is fantastic since it represents the pendulum swinging back after Asian creatives embraced, adapted and evolved American cinema.”

“Unfortunately, Asian American artists are largely overlooked in Asia, so No Rest for the Righteous and the following feature film represents an effort by James Kyson, me and many others to create more opportunities for Asian audiences to experience Asian American cinema.”

To kick off the filming of the short film, Kim and Lee will appear at a special event to raise funds for the project on Dec. 15, from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Aato Restaurant, 1449 Lombard St., San Francisco. Empty Kingdom, Asian Business League of San Francisco (ABL-SF), Korean American Professional Society (KAPS), Keith Kamisugi, Louis Hong, Claire Chang, Suhi Koizumi, Min Lee, Dennis Kwon, Tae E. Kim, Amy Kang and Christine Chang are also on the event host committee.

Organizers are requesting a $20 donation at the door. Food will be available to order and bar will be no-host. To RSVP for the event, visit or

If you’d like to support the project with a donation, but can’t make the event, contribute on