To Be

From Oakland, to Indiana, and into the depths of YouTube, Tony tries to solve the mystery of his Vietnamese father—exploring how refugee men are shaped by war, race, and loss in America.

Family eating while looking at phones
Funding Initiative
Diversity Development Fund
Headshot of man

Tony Nguyen

Tony Nguyen is an Oakland-based filmmaker whose work explores the Vietnamese refugee experience (Enforcing the Silence, Giap’s Last Day at the Ironing Board Factory) and the often overlooked stories of individuals and communities that make up the fabric of Oakland (Fresh Frozen, I See Me). 

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The Film

To Be follows filmmaker Tony Nguyen on his quest to solve the mystery of his father and heal a part of himself. Crafted like an investigative home movie, this documentary combines a personal family journey with a larger exploration of family, history, masculinity, and how refugee men are shaped by race, war and loss in America.