Karen Cho 曹嘉伦 is a Chinese-Canadian filmmaker known for her documentaries that explore themes of identity, immigration, and social justice.
Karen’s first film In the Shadow of Gold Mountain (2004) examined the legacy of the Chinese Head Tax, Exclusion Act and redress movement. Her other films include the Gemini-Nominated Seeking Refuge (2009) a film on refugees in Canada and Status Quo? The Unfinished Business of Feminism in Canada (2012) that won Best Documentary at the Whistler Film Festival and launched in over 67 community screenings across the country.
Karen’s TV work has touched on subjects like Indigenous health and wellness, Japanese Canadian internment, Quebecois cuisine, Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, and artist-activists around the world. In 2018 Karen was nominated for a Best Directing Canadian Screen Award for her work on CBC’s Interrupt This Program.
Karen’s latest film, Big Fight in Little Chinatown looks at the struggle to save Chinatowns across North America. in November 2022, it premiered at DOC NYC, Reel Asian Toronto (where it received an honourable mention for Best Canadian Feature Film), and the RIDM Festival in Montreal. It will broadcast on TVO and French CBC in 2023.