After a young Chinese student goes missing on a university campus, her family travels to the U.S. for the first time. While unravelling the mystery of her disappearance, they discover how much her life touched others.

Yingying Zhang, a 26-year-old Chinese student, comes to the U.S. to study. In her detailed and beautiful diaries, the aspiring young scientist and teacher is full of optimism, hoping to also be married and a mother someday. Within weeks of her arrival, Yingying disappears from the campus. Through exclusive access to Yingying’s family and boyfriend, Finding Yingying closely follows their journey as they search to unravel the mystery of her disappearance and seek justice for their daughter while navigating a strange, foreign country. But most of all, Finding Yingying is the story of who Yingying was: a talented young woman loved by her family and friends.

Winner: 2020 SXSW Special Jury Recognition for Breakthrough Voice

“This poignant documentary, which follows the story of Yingying Zhang, a Chinese graduate student whose disappearance in America leads her family to come search for her, combines the care and steadfastness of a true-crime procedural with a rare sensitivity to questions of cultural difference, family dynamics, and the immigrant experience.” – SXSW 2020 Jury


98 Minutes


Jiayan “Jenny” Shi


NR | Documentary

a pre-recorded Q&A with Director Jiayan “Jenny” Shi
will be available to watch for free for all ticket buyers

“Life is too short to be ordinary.”
– Yingying Zhang diary entry, June 1, 2017

World Premiere: 2020 SXSW Film Festival • Official Selection: 2019 Sundance Summit • Official Selection: 2019 TFI Network • Winner: 2019 American Documentary Film Fund Pitch • Winner: 2018 Paley Center for Media DocPitch • Awardee: 2018 Kartemquin Diverse Voices Accelerator Fund