While very few women joined the first waves of Chinese immigration to America, toward the end of the 19th century, more families sent daughters, believing they’d become servants. Only it was more often prostitution that awaited them. That’s the fate of Sun Foy, Mai Ling, Ghee Moon, Ye Fung, and Ging Wa, five girls from five different families who become a family of their own to survive. Sun Foy is their natural leader, Ye Fung the tragic beauty, and little Ging Wa, hobbled by her bound feet, is the one who needs them all the most. Together, they’re strong enough to endure life under Cap’n Fender until their path crosses with that of Tom Harte and Print Ritter.
Valerie Tian was born in 1989 in Vancouver, Canada. A shy individual, she never thought of pursuing acting. However, from the age of six, she wanted to be financially independent and experience what work was like, thinking it could be fun. Valerie would always ask her parents if she could get a job, to which her parents reply was always “you’re too young!” When Valerie was ten she finally managed to convince her parents to register her in an acting class and has enjoyed her acting activities ever since.
In the summer of 2001, Valerie auditioned for critically acclaimed Canadian director Mina Shum, while she was casting for her feature Long Life, Happiness and Prosperity. Mina fell in love with Valerie, and she won the leading role of Mindy Ho, a precocious thirteen year old trying to bring her mother (played by Sandra Oh), love and lottery winnings with her magical powers. The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival 2002, sold out at the Sundance Film Festival in 2003, and opened the LA Asian American Film Festival 2003.
Valerie’s film credits now include a cameo in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, the role of the Goth Girl, Sophie in Bob the Butler, opposite Tom Green and Brooke Shields, leading roles in the The Wake of Death, opposite Jean Claude Van Damme and in the short film, Chika Birds, (CHUM Television), winner of the Best Short Film at the 2004 Sproketts Children’s Film Festival, and appearances as an X kid in X2, X-Men United and as an elf in Disney’s Santa Clause 2.
She was a series regular on the Warner Brother’s Television series, Black Sash, playing Russell Wong’s daughter and appeared in a cameo role in the ABC series The Days.