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Friday, March 30, 2012

Sharing some episodes of ROAD TO AFA that I directed

This is very late, since the Asian Film Awards ended two weeks ago. So you probably already knew that the Oscar-winning A SEPARATION was the night's major winner. (full results here)

But I haven't been updating this blog much these days, so please bear with me.

You might remember that I mentioned directing a series of interviews with a few major Japanese film figures last month while suffering from a hideous food poisoning as part of the ROAD TO AFA (Asian Film Awards) program hosted by Janet Hsieh. A month earlier, in January, I was in Taipei for these interviews.

I didn't exactly blog about my Taipei escapades, so I'll post up some of my old tweets related to it.

Here are the first three interviewees, Hou Hsiao-Hsien, Tom Lin (director of STARRY STARRY NIGHT) and Eric Lin (star of STARRY STARRY NIGHT), regarding the Past and Present of Taiwan Films.

After that, I interviewed SEEDIQ BAAL team: director Wei Te-Sheng, cinematographer Chin Ting-Chang and actor Umin Boya regarding the beliefs of filmmakers. The interview was conducted in Wei's office. He's just such a cool and great guy.

The JUMP ASHIN! team, producer Lee Lieh, cast members Lawrence Ko (eventual Best Supporting Actor winner) and Lin Chen-Xi (whom I met a few times before at the Pusan and Tokyo Film Festivals at 2010, back then I referred to her by her nick name Lin Zaizai) spoke about the passion of Taiwanese.

Actress Guey Lun Mei (nominated as Best Supporting Actress for Tsui Hark's FLYING SWORDS AT DRAGON GATE) and YOU'RE THE APPLE OF MY EYE lead actor Ko Chen-Tung, along with Hou Hsiao Hsien again, give some insight on the mysterious relationship between directors and actors.

So there you go, those were the Taiwanese episodes.

Here are the Japanese ones.

Directors Yoji Yamada and Hirokazu Kore-eda speak about Japanese films about familial relationships.

After that, Yoji Yamada join directors Kiyoshi Kurosawa and Sono Sion, along with actor Ihara Tsuyoshi (LETTERS FROM IWO JIMA) to talk about Japanese films on the international stage.

Finally, Ihara Tsuyoshi and actresses Meisa Kuroki and Satomi Ishihara speak about recent manga adaptations and horror films that had always been popular among Japanese films.

Aside from some coursework back in 2006 for my Graduate Diploma in Media Production classes at Murdoch University, I have never actually "directed" any interviews before, especially those with the talking head format. So it was exceptionally educational. Although the poor interviewees and my team had to occasionally suffer through my unorthodox style (of changing set-ups between questions in an interview), I'm glad everything came together in the end. Was very grateful for the opportunity.

There were still a number of other interviews done by the producers of ROAD TO AFA with the film people of Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, South Korea and Hong Kong which are worth a look. So go and visit the AFA Youtube page if you're interested.