American-born filmmaker Jake Wachtel began his career making short documentaries for nonprofits and social impact ventures working in the global south. In 2015, he moved to Cambodia to teach a year-long class in filmmaking to children as a part of the Filmmakers Without Borders initiative. His Phnom Penh-set short film The Foreigner Here premiered at the Cambodian International Film Festival, and he has gone on to collaborate with many of the growing new wave of young Cambodian filmmakers. He also served as on-set editor for Jimmy Henderson's Cambodian-Chinese co-production The Prey. Phnom Penh became his home base for several years as he developed his first feature Karmalink - Cambodia's first sci-fi movie-set in the community where he taught and produced with a majority Cambodian cast and crew, including his former students.