Jo Koy ecstatic over warm reception to upcoming film

Published May 14, 2022, 12:05 PM

by Stephanie Bernardino

Stand-up comedian Jo Koy is on cloud nine.

The trailer for his upcoming film titled “Easter Sunday” is getting tons of attention on YouTube.

He even noted this in a recent social media post.

He wrote: “I’m overwhelmed. 9.4 million views on the trailer in 3 days!”

He would go on to thank Universal Pictures, Amblin Entertainment, and Ride Back Ranch.

Of course, as usual, Jo Koy didn’t forget to highlight his roots, writing “Filipino Proud!”

In another post, Jo Koy, expressed gratitude to Amblin’s Steven Spielberg for helping “Easter Sunday” get off the ground.

“Thank you Steven Spielberg for making my dream a reality. Mahal kita,” he wrote.

As of writing, the trailer now has received more than 15 million views.

“Easter Sunday” was written by Ken Cheng and Kate Angelo, from a story by Cheng.

It follows Jo Koy as Joe Valencia, a down-on-his-luck comedian returning home for an Easter celebration with his loud and dysfunctional Filipino-American family.

Jo Koy describes the film as a love letter to the Filipino-American community.

Note that “Easter Sunday” features an all-star cast that includes several Hollywood stars with Filipino lineage including Eva Noblezada, Eugene Cordero, Rodney To, Lydia Gaston, Lou Diamond Phillips and Tia Carrere.

(Trivia: Sharon Cuneta was supposed to play the role taken on by Carrere after the former mistakenly tested positive for COVID.)

It also stars Jimmy O. Yang, Brandon Wardell, Lydia Gaston, Asif Ali, Tiffany Haddish and Jay Chandrasekhar, who also directed the film.

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Jo Koy related his hopes that the film will open more doors not only for Filipinos but other marginalized ethnicities.

“One thing I try and express a lot is when we turn off the light, we’re all the same color. We’re all laughing at the same thing. My story is relatable to you no matter what color you are. For some reason when we turn the lights on, we like to separate ourselves and not get it. And I just don’t understand what that is,” he said.

“You’re going to see a lot of different ethnicities in this movie. We got an Indian guy, we got a Black woman, we got Filipino people. We got an Indian director for God’s sake. And you know what? No one cares. It’s just a movie about a family. And once Hollywood sees that this is the norm, this can be done without always having to be so specific. A mom is a mom, a son is a son, a grandson is a grandson. And we can all relate to it. I want this movie to open other doors for other people, other ethnicities to celebrate their culture.” 

As to why he focused on Easter Sunday, he explained, “Easter is just that day when Filipinos all come out. I mean, it’s more packed than Christmas. That was the significance of that day. I felt like it’s like an indirect way of saying this is for Filipinos. I don’t think that many people celebrate Easter as hard as we do. And then I also wanted to do the framework around one day because I was such a fan of ‘Friday’ the movie. They did it in one day. Let’s do it in one chaotic day.”

“Easter Sunday” will hit theaters this August.

Jo Koy, real name Joseph Glenn Herbert, gained fame through his stand-up specials with Netflix such as “Jo Koy: Live From Seattle,” “Jo Koy: Comin’ In Hot,” and “Jo Koy: In His Elements.”

Last year, he released a new book titled “Mixed Plate: Chronicles of an All-American Combo.”