2nd SEAFIC Lab Selects Projects from Promising First-Time Filmmakers

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Five Southeast Asian Projects Come From Laos, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand

Bangkok, February 1st 2018 – The pioneering script and mentoring lab Southeast Asia Fiction Film Lab (SEAFIC) has finalized its selection for its 2nd year, this time concentrating on first-time filmmakers hailing from Laos, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand. The projects themselves include topics touching on family strife, sociopolitical bureaucracy, cross-cultural humor and deadly crocodiles.

Submissions for the 2nd year came from nearly every Southeast Asian country, and they were evaluated by SEAFIC’s Selection Committees, which include the following experts:

Vimukthi Jayasundara – Cannes Camera d’Or-winning Sri Lankan director
Yukie Kito – Producer of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s TOKYO SONATA and Atsuko Hirayanagi’s OH! LUCY
Jan Naszewski – CEO, New Europe Films Sales
Lorna Tee – Producer & Head of Festival Management, International Film Festival & Awards Macao
Florian Weghorn – Programme Manager, Berlinale Talents
Michael J. Werner – Producer & ex-Chairman, Fortissimo Films

Here are the five selected projects and their filmmakers, in alphabetical order:

1. Ah Girl
dir: Geck Geck Ang, prod: Sharon Ng, Fran Borgia (Singapore, 1st film)
Synopsis: Ah Girl, 7 years old, has to choose to live with either her Mum or Pa after her parent’s
divorce.

Geck Geck ANG’s first short film, BROKEN CRAYON, won Best Fiction at 2013’s Singapore ShortFilm Awards and traveled to festivals worldwide. She later attended the Asian Film Academy in Busan and directed two other short films, HAPPY BIRTHDAY (2014) and THREE LITTLE PIGS (2014).

2. Ajoomma
dir: He Shuming, prod: Si En Tan, Anthony Chen (Singapore, 1st film)
Synopsis: A middle-aged, Korean-drama obsessed widow from Singapore trying to find a new purpose in life travels out of the country for the first time to Seoul, and promptly gets lost.

HE Shuming completed his Master’s in Directing at the AFI Conservatory. He contributed the short LETTERS FROM THE MOTHERLAND to the omnibus 667 (2017), which premiered at Busan Film Festival. His project AJOOMMA won Most Promising Project at 2015’s Southeast Asian Film Lab.

3. Arnold is a Model Student
dir: Sorayos Prapapan, prod: Donsaron Kovitvanitcha (Thailand, 1st film)
Synopsis: Arnold is a high school student in Bangkok and a school representative for an academic contest. One day, he got involved in cheating a prestigious military school’s entrance examination.

Sorayos PRAPAPAN’s project ARNOLD IS A MODEL STUDENT received the Hubert Bals Script Development Fund and previously attended Ties That Bind, Produire au Sud and Tokyo Talents labs. His latest short DEATH OF A SOUND MAN (2017) premiered in Venice Orizzonti competition.

4. Crocodile Tears
dir: Tumpal Tampubolon, prod: Mandy Marahimin (Indonesia, 1st film)
Synopsis: A mother tries to prove her son’s innocence after he was accused of murdering a young woman who died in their crocodile farm.

Tumpal TAMPUBOLON previously attended Berlinale Talents and Asian Film Academy, and participated in the omnibus BELKIBOLANG, which premiered at Rotterdam Film Festival. In 2014 he won Indonesia’s Citra Award for Best Original Screenplay for writing the fiction TABULA RASA.

5. Raising a Beast
dir: Xaisongkham Induangchanthy, prod: Abigail Lazaro, Steve Arounsack (Laos, 1st film)
Synopsis: Two Hmong siblings with diverging destinies are responsible for grooming a bull into a prize fighter that will earn the family money and honor.

Xaisongkham INDUANGCHANTHY, a 2012 Asian Film Academy alumni, in 2015 completed a
Master’s Degree in Filmmaking in New York under the Fulbright Scholarship. He has made short fiction and documentary, with the latter, BECAUSE I AM A GIRL... (2016), funded by NHK Japan.

The five projects shall once again be automatically enrolled in the SEAFICxPAS programme, a producer’s lab organized by Nantes Festival des 3 Continents’ Produire au Sud initiative that will be held alongside SEAFIC. SEAFIC’s 1st lab session shall take place between February 24th – March 3rd, 2018 at Monoceros Resort in Chiang Mai, Thailand.


Announcing The Winners of The 1st SEAFIC Awards

SEAFIC’s inaugural year is capped off with an awards ceremony with prizes given by leading industry experts

Bangkok, July 4th, 2017 – The Southeast Asia Fiction Film Lab (SEAFIC), the pioneering filmmakers’ lab for Southeast Asian directors and producers, announces the winners of the 1st SEAFIC Awards.

After 8 months of intense script and project development, the five projects selected in SEAFIC’s inaugural year finally concluded their lab curriculum at the SEAFIC Open House event at Alliance française Bangkok from July 1-3, 2017.

The projects are:

Cu Li Never Cries - Dir: Pham Ngoc Lan, Prod: Phan Dang Di (Vietnam)

Pham Ngoc Lan’s first short fiction film ANOTHER CITY (2016) was in competition at the Berlin
Film Festival. He also attended the Berlinale Talents in 2015. This project was selected at Busan Asian Project Market 2016 and Cannes Atelier 2017.

Doi Boy - Dir: Nontawat Numbenchapol, Prod: Steve Chen, Supatcha Thipsena (Thailand/Cambodia)

Nontawat Numbenchapol’s first two documentaries, BOUNDARY and BY THE RIVER, premiered at the Berlinale Forum and Locarno Film Festival in 2013, respectively. His latest documentary #BKKY premiered at the Busan Film Festival last year. DOI BOY was selected at the EAVE Ties That Bind this year.

Stranger Eyes - Dir: Yeo Siew Hua, Prod: Fran Borgia (Singapore)

Yeo Siew Hua’s first feature film IN THE HOUSE OF STRAW (2009) was in competition at the
Bangkok International Film Festival, among other film festivals. He attended Tokyo Talents in 2015.

Regretfully at Dawn - Dir: Sivaroj Kongsakul, Prod: Pimpaka Towira (Thailand)

Sivaroj Kongsakul’s first feature ETERNITY (2010) won the Rotterdam Tiger award and Best
Film at Deauville Asian Film Festival. In 2011, he was part of the 22nd Cannes
Cinefondation residency. This project received the Hubert Bals Fund for script development this year.

You Are There - Dir: Nicole Midori Woodford, Prod: Jeremy Chua (Singapore)

Nicole Woodford’s latest short FOR WE ARE STRANGERS (2015) was selected at Busan
Film Festival’s Wide Angle Competition. She is an alumni of the Berlinale Talents and Busan Asian Film Academy.

These awards, unveiled after a live invitation-only final pitching session by the filmmakers of the five SEAFIC projects in front of a distinguished international jury, is part of the SEAFIC Open House event at Alliance française Bangkok from July 1-3, 2017.

The 1st SEAFIC Awards consist of three prizes:

a. The SEAFIC-TFL Award, whereby Matthieu Darras, the Artistic Director of TorinoFilmLab,
chooses one producer from SEAFIC to attend this year’s TorinoFilmLab Meeting Event (November 24-26). This is a result of the close collaboration between SEAFIC and TorinoFilmLab. The prize goes to producer Jeremy Chua from the Singaporean project YOU ARE THERE.

b. The Open SEA Fund Award, jointly sponsored by VS Service and White Light Post, which gives one SEAFIC project rental credit towards equipment rental from VS Service worth 10,000 USD and post-production services provided by White Light Post worth 15,000 USD.
The prize goes to director Nicole Midori Woodford and producer Jeremy Chua for the Singaporean project YOU ARE THERE.

c. The Purin Award, worth US$15,000 in cash prize, given by a panel of distinguished international jury who has read the five filmmakers’ latest scripts and heard their final pitches in person.

The jury members are:

  • Christian Jeune, Director of Film Department & Deputy General Delegate, Cannes Film Festival
  • Kini Kim, formerly EVP/Head of International, CJ Entertainment
  • Nansun Shi, Producer and Co-founder of Film Workshop & Distribution Workshop

The prize goes to director Nontawat Numbenchapol and producers Steve Chen and Supatcha Thipsena for the Thai-Cambodian project DOI BOY.

 

For more information about SEAFIC and SEAFIC Open House, please contact us at
info@seaficlab.com.



 

 

SEAFIC Open House, Prizes and Award Jury unveiled

SEAFIC’s inaugural year is capped off with a public event that culminates in an awards ceremony with prizes given by leading industry experts.

Bangkok, April 12th, 2017 – The Southeast Asia Fiction Film Lab (SEAFIC), the pioneering filmmakers’ lab for Southeast Asian directors and producers, announces the launch of SEAFIC Open House, which each year shall run parallel to the 3rd and final session of SEAFIC’s 8-month long program. The idea behind Open House is akin to opening the campus of a university to visitors to come and know more about what goes on inside.

The first ever SEAFIC Open House shall take place July 1-3, 2017. During this event, international and domestic industry guests and curious public are invited to discover, through a free screening, panels and talks, SEAFIC’s mission to develop filmmakers and producers from the region, as well as to learn more about the film industry. We welcome all industry guests from the region and beyond to attend.

SEAFIC Open House’s 2017 program includes:

  • a free screening of a Southeast Asian film that has been developed in script labs and are coproductions. After the screening, there shall be an extensive talk with the director and producer of the film about how the script was developed, and how the co-productions were formed.
  • panels by prominent experts and Award Jury members
  • live pitch by the 5 SEAFIC filmmakers who have undergone the last 8 months of script development*
  • awards ceremony where prizewinners are announced*

*these two events are for industry guests only

For this 1st edition, MEN WHO SAVE THE WORLD (2014) by Malaysian director Liew Seng Tat has been chosen as the opening screening. The film, a Malaysia/Germany/Netherlands/France coproduction, was developed at both Sundance Institute and TorinoFilmLab. Both director Liew Seng Tat and producer Sharon Gan shall be on hands after the free screening to talk about the development and financing of their film.

AWARDS & JURY

SEAFIC is also pleased to announce the three-person award jury who shall be giving the Purin Award, worth US$15,000 in cash prize, after reading the five filmmakers’ latest scripts and hearing their final pitches in person. The jury members are:

  • Christian Jeune, Director of Film Department & Deputy General Delegate, Cannes Film Festival
  • Kini Kim, formerly EVP/Head of International, CJ Entertainment
  • Nansun Shi, Producer and Co-founder of Film Workshop & Distribution Workshop

In addition to the Purin Award, which is sponsored by the Purin Foundation, SEAFIC has also partnered with two other organizations for new prizes:

  • SEAFIC-TFL Award, whereby Matthieu Darras, the Artistic Director of TorinoFilmLab, chooses one producer from SEAFIC to attend this year’s TorinoFilmLab Meeting Event (November 24-26). This award is a result of the close collaboration between SEAFIC and TorinoFilmLab.
  • The Open SEA Fund Award, jointly sponsored by VS Service and White Light Post, which gives one SEAFIC project rental credit towards equipment rental from VS Service worth 10,000 USD and post-production services provided by White Light Post worth 15,000 USD.

SEAFIC Open House shall take place at, and is supported by, the Alliance française de Bangkok (179 Thanon Witthayu, Khwaeng Lumphini, Lumpini, Bangkok 10120). Further venue is supported by the Goethe-Institut Thailand, who has also come on board as a SEAFIC sponsor.


SEAFIC Announces Its Inaugural Selection of Projects

Five Southeast Asian Projects From Across Genres by 1st and 2nd-time Directors Are Represented.

Bangkok, October 9th 2016 - After receiving a total of 57 applications from nearly every Southeast Asian country, the Southeast Asia Fiction Film Lab (SEAFIC) has finalized its selection, which represents a strong mix of projects that showcases the diversity of topics and genres coming from the region.

All submissions, hailing from Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam, were evaluated by SEAFIC’s Reading Committee (TorinoFilmLab’s Matthieu Darras, Sundance Film Institute’s Paul Federbush and Asian Shadow’s Isabelle Glachant), which selected 13 projects for the shortlist. Our Script Committee (Cannes Critics’ Week’s Remi Bonhomme, Tokyo Filmex’s Shozo Ichiyama and director Pen-ek Ratanaruang) then assessed the scripts by the shortlisted filmmakers to decide upon the 5 projects which shall be attending SEAFIC’s 9-month long script development program.

Here are the five selected projects, in alphabetical order:

1. Cu Li Never Cries
Director: Pham Ngoc Lan, Producer: Phan Dang Di (Vietnam, 1st film)

Pham Ngoc Lan’s first short fiction film ANOTHER CITY (2016) was in competition at the Berlin Film Festival. He also attended the Berlinale Talents in 2015.

2. Doi Boy
Director: Nontawat Numbenchapol, Producer: Supatcha Thipsena, Steve Chen (Thailand, 1st fiction film) 

Nontawat Numbenchapol’s first two documentaries, BOUINDARY and BY THE RIVER, premiered at the Berlinale Forum and Locarno Film Festival in 2013, respectively. His latest documentary #BKKY premieres at the Busan Film Festival this year. 

3. In the Eyes of a Stranger
Director: Yeo Siew Hua, Producer: Fran Borgia (Singapore, 2nd film) 

Yeo Siew Hua’s first feature film IN THE HOUSE OF STRAW (2009) was in competition at the Bangkok International Film Festival, among other film festivals.

4. Regretfully at Dawn (Arunkarn)
Director: Sivaroj Kongsakul, Producer: Pimpaka Towira (Thailand, 2nd film) 

Sivaroj Kongsakul’s first feature ETERNITY (2010) won the Rotterdam Tiger award and Best Film at Deauville Asian Film Festival. In 2011 he was part of the 22nd Cannes Cinefondation residency.

 5. You Are There
Director: Nicole Midori Woodford, Producer: Jeremy Chua (Singapore, 1st film)

Nicole Midori Woodford’s latest short FOR WE ARE STRANGERS (2015) was selected at Busan Film Festival’s Wide Angle Competition. She is also a Berlinale Talents alumni in 2010.

The genres tackled by these projects include crime thriller, arthouse drama, LGBT theme and supernatural mystery. These five shall also be automatically enrolled in the SEAFIC x PAS programme, a producer’s lab organized by Nantes Festival des 3 Continents’ Produire au Sud initiative that takes place alongside SEAFIC. As such, both the director and producer of each project shall be invited to Chiang Mai, Thailand from October 23-30, 2016 to participate in the SEAFIC script lab programme as well as SEAFIC x PAS. The filmmakers will also be attending the 2nd session in late February 2017 in Chiang Mai, as well as the final 3rd session in late June 2017.

SEAFIC’s 3rd session in June 2017 shall no longer take place in Singapore. Instead, this final session shall now be held in Bangkok, Thailand. The United States Embassy in Bangkok has also joined the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Japan Foundation, Thailand as SEAFIC’s sponsor.


SEAFIC Teams Up with Produire au Sud

Bangkok, July 7th 2016 - Combining forces to create a comprehensive film lab for directors, screenwriters and producers in Southeast Asia, the Southeast Asia Fiction Film Lab (SEAFIC) and Nantes Festival des 3 Continents' Produire au Sud (France) announces a new collaboration which merges SEAFIC's 9-month intensive script development program with Produire au Sud's long-running producers' workshop in Bangkok under one roof.

Called SEAFIC x PAS, this new arrangement shall consolidate both program's calls for entries. The five projects eventually selected for SEAFIC shall automatically be enrolled in Produire au Sud's Southeast Asia workshop: the directors and screenwriter shall attend SEAFIC's script development lab, while in parallel the producers of those same projects shall attend Produire au Sud. Previously held yearly in Bangkok in November, Produire au Sud's Southeast Asia lab shall now move to Chiang Mai and shall take place concurrently with SEAFIC's first session, from October 23-30, 2016. Furthermore, SEAFIC x PAS shall hold a second follow-up session for these same producers in June 2017 to coincide with SEAFIC's final session in Singapore.

SEAFIC x PAS is supported by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The deal was negotiated by Produire au Sud's Coordinator Guillaume Mainguet and SEAFIC's Executive Director Raymond Phathanavirangoon, with the help of Loïc Wong, Regional Audiovisual Attaché for Southeast Asia at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

In addition, for its inaugural year, SEAFIC has assembled six experts from around the world to select the final five projects:

Reading Committee:
Matthieu Darras, TorinoFilmLab
Paul Federbush, International Director, Sundance Institute
Isabelle Glachant, CEO of Chinese Shadows, Producer of IN LOVE WE TRUST and 11 FLOWERS

Script Committee:
Remi Bonhomme, Program Manager, Cannes Critics’ Week
Shozo Ichiyama, Program Director, Tokyo FILMeX, Producer of A TOUCH OF SIN and 24 CITY
Pen-ek Ratanaruang, Thai Director of LAST LIFE IN THE UNIVERSE and PLOY

Furthermore, The Japan Foundation in Bangkok has come on board SEAFIC as sponsor, joining the Singapore Film Commission and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in their support of the script lab. Singapore's The Arts House, which occupies the almost 200-year-old building that was Singapore’s first Parliament House and now promotes and presents multidisciplinary programmes and festivals such as literary arts, film, performing and visual arts, has also come on board as SEAFIC's partner and venue sponsor for SEAFIC's final session in June 2017. The Chiang Mai sessions shall be held at Monoceros Resort in Mae Rim, Chiang Mai.

SEAFIC's call for entry ends on August 1st, 2016. The final five selected projects shall be announced in early October 2016.


SEAFIC'S Launch

Hong Kong, March 15th 2016 - The Southeast Asian Fiction Film Lab (SEAFIC), supported by Purin Foundation and with the sponsorship of the Singapore Film Commission and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, announces the launch of a pioneering script lab for Southeast Asian filmmakers. The first intensive script lab of its kind in East Asia, SEAFIC follows film labs such as TorinoFilmLab (Italy), Sundance Institute (USA), and the Jerusalem International Film Lab (Israel).

Each year, SEAFIC shall select five 1st, 2nd and 3rd-time filmmakers with work-in-progress scripts to work with our veteran script consultant for 9 months to develop and refine their screenplays. Each of the participants shall be invited to three lab sessions, beginning with the first session in Chiangmai, Thailand from October 23-30, 2016. Subsequent sessions shall take place in Chiangmai in late February 2017, and the final session in Singapore in late June 2017.

During the final session in Singapore, each of the five lab participants shall participate in a pitch session, whereby one project shall be awarded a cash prize of US$15,000, as determined by a three-person award jury. 

With project selection committees and award juries comprising of international film veterans such as Cannes Film Festival's Director of Film Department Christian Jeune, Program Director of Tokyo Filmex, and renowned producer Shozo Ichiyama, Thai New Wave pioneer filmmaker Pen-ek Ratanaruang, among others, SEAFIC shall draw from experts from around the world to select the best projects from the region, be they arthouse or commercial.

Furthermore, SEAFIC is collaborating with the TorinoFilmLab, whereby one of TorinoFilmLab's representatives shall also take part in SEAFIC's selection process. 

“Our goal with SEAFIC is to create a world-class script lab that helps projects realize their full potential. Too often projects are rushed into production without enough time for script development. A well-developed screenplay can also help filmmakers find more financing, and thus help them realize their vision,” explains SEAFIC Executive Director Raymond Phathanavirangoon. “Moreover, at SEAFIC we encourage commercial, genre and arthouse projects to apply, as there are great ideas and unique visions in all types of cinema. We want this kind of diversity.”

Franz Rodenkirchen, SEAFIC's script consultant, says, “Raymond and I have been working together on a curriculum tailored just for Southeast Asian filmmakers for nearly three years. I'm very excited that SEAFIC is now a reality, and I look forward to working with talented filmmakers from the region.” 

Visra Vichit Vadakan from Purin Foundation adds, “Our mission is to identify and support artists in the region who have the courage to question and challenge, to create change, and to inspire others to do the same. SEAFIC is our first step in supporting independent film in the region.”

SEAFIC shall begin accepting applications starting from April 1st, 2016.