Directing duo TwinTaoers lead our efforts to influence positive change in the world.
Identical twin brothers, Aaron and Winston Tao, aka TwinTaoers, think the latter. Overcoming adversity is more than just part of their creative process, it’s their credo. At their core, TwinTaoers believe that adversity shaped them into the artists they are today. Their parents divorced at a young age and they were raised by their mother, who suffers from schizo-affective bipolar disorder.
TwinTaoers’ first witnessed the transformative potential of their own work after their college thesis film “Picture Perfect” screened at the Beijing International Film Festival.
TT: “The film had had a successful festival run in the states. But when it screened in Beijing the reaction was on another level. Audience members were sobbing, and dozens of them approached us after the screening. We learned that because of China’s one child policy, The story we told about fatherhood connected in a much deeper way. It was that unexpected reaction that showed us how powerful human storytelling can be as as a tool for change.”
Since that debut, the twins have focussed much of their narrative filmmaking on work for international non-profits. Their films have helped raise over $8,500,000 dollars in funds to support organizations fighting human trafficking and other causes worldwide.
In 2016 Aaron and Winston partnered with International Justice Mission to shed light on the horrors of child cyber-sex trafficking. Their ensuing film, “SuperMaarko,” garnered over a million views in two weeks and raised $500,000 in five days for IJM.
TwinTaoers have recently completed a follow-up film, “Watching,”exploring the abuses of censorship in North Korea and asking, “What would American society look like if it faced the same oppression that North Koreans live with on a daily basis?”