Disney puts the spotlight on its Pinoy staff as it observes Filipino American History Month, a month-long celebration of the heritage, culture, and achievements of Filipino-Americans
For many, Disney has been the ultimate source of childhood fantasy. The American film studio has taken kids all over the world to different fairy tale worlds in animated films like “Snow White,” “The Little Mermaid,” and “Cinderella,” and with modern classics like “Toy Story” and “The Lion King.” And as it continues to widen its range when it comes to representation, Disney is mastering the skill of recognizing culture and heritage not just on screen but also behind the scenes.
This time, the mass media company puts the spotlight on its Pinoy staff as it observes Filipino American History Month, a month-long celebration of the heritage, culture, and achievements of Filipino-Americans. In a video released on Oct. 28, 2021, Disney featured three Fil-Am cast members Kristine Sy Serrano, Rachel Agana, and Ralphie Giron, each of them sharing stories that make being a Fil-Am unique yet close to home for their kababayans.
As Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion partner for Disney General Entertainment, Kristine believes in the importance of telling the stories of her “parents, my aunts, and uncles, and their journey to the United States to... the younger generations to remind them of the start of our American history.”
“Filipino American History Month is a way to thank those who came before us and celebrate who we are today!” she adds.
Ralphie, who works at the Sensitive Information Protection Program, shares a distinct Filipino generous party trait that is “balot.” “Another thing I love sharing about my heritage and want to share with people is that if you ever get invited to a Filipino party, it is very disrespectful not to take a to-go container of food that the person has given you who’s hosted the party” he muses. “Please take that food and eat it.”
Continuing the Filipino food tale is Rachel, a post-production coordinator at Pixar. With her being born and raised in the US, her best connection to the Filipino culture is through food. She experienced it best through the fun and communal eating practices like kamayan and boodle fight.
Learn more about the Filipino American experience here: