Devin Fei-Fan Tau, BS 97
Film Director & Producer, No Sunrise Wasted

Tawainese American Filmmaker Devin Tau developed a passion for movies while working at his parents’ video rental store in Whittier, Calif. When it came time to choose a career, however, it wasn’t an option. Still, Tau bucked convention.

Headshot of Devin Fei Fan Tau.“In my Asian family, there are three acceptable professions: doctor, lawyer, engineer,” he says. “My brothers became engineers; I broke the mold by doing business at Berkeley.”

Tau went on to work a decade in corporate finance, then as an apparel buyer for Gap Inc. But putting stories to celluloid was too strong a pull.

“When I turned 40, I had a midlife crisis, so I went to film school and started my own production company,” he says. “I never thought that I would be a filmmaker, mostly because it was culturally never possible.”

To date, Tau has three feature-length films to his credit: the thriller Half Sisters (2023); Who’s On Top?, the story of four LGBTQ+ athletes who climb Oregon’s Mount Hood (2021); and The Road Home (2022), chronicling six formerly incarcerated adults and their challenges to relocate while on community supervision.

Tau, who is gay, says he is driven to spotlight stories that haven’t been told before. “I’m a huge advocate for the underdog.”

Tau says there are similarities between business and filmmaking, beyond raising funds to bring a project to fruition: “If you’re creative, you have a million ideas, similar to an entrepreneur. It’s always challenging to get people to believe in your ideas if you’re not proven or you haven’t come to market with your product.”