Tim Tsai

Tim Tsai is a Taiwanese American filmmaker whose feature debut Seadrift chronicles the racial hostilities that erupted in violence during the early days of Vietnamese refugee arrival on the Texas gulf coast. Seadrift premiered at Slamdance 2019 and was broadcast on PBS, garnering awards such as Best Historical Film at Dallas International Film Festival, the Grand Jury Award for N. American Documentary at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, and a Texas Visionary Award from the Houston Film Critics Society. Other work include a series of short films on early Chinese Texans for Austin PBS, and editing Powerlands (AmDocs '22 Best US Feature), a film on global Indigenous resistance against resource extraction. He holds an MFA in film production from U.T. Austin, served as the former executive director of the Austin Asian American Film Festival, and is a Firelight Media Documentary Lab alum.


Black and Latinx residents in California’s Central Valley unite against a worsening environmental crisis and systemic racism. Allensworth, once an all-Black settlement, becomes a battleground for justice as residents attempt to save “the town that refuses to die.”


Seadrift (Documentary Lab)
Untitled Allensworth Project (William Greaves Research & Development Fund)

Program Affiliation

Documentary Lab
William Greaves Research & Development Fund

Cohort Year

2018-2020 (Documentary Lab)
2023-2024 (William Greaves Research & Development Fund

Documentary Lab
William Greaves Research and Development Fund

Other Filmakers