Recently, a local filmmaker named Indrani Kopal had won an award from a student showcase that was part of the Cannes Short films Corner. Good for her, congrats!
But somehow, the media had been mistaking her award as an actual, official award from the Cannes Film Festival itself. We don't think we should lie to ourselves about these things (no, I'm not implying Indrani's doing that, she knows pretty well what the award is, but there are too many misleading articles since her win).
So... today, after reading one article to many that showed the writer's lack of research and knowledge on these film festival stuff, I decided to write this lengthy post in response to Edgar Ong's article (more like a poorly constructed rant piece, really), "M’sian wins at Cannes but potential winner at home is banned!"
Two weeks ago, RIVER OF EXPLODING DURIANS was screened at the Green Film Festival in Seoul... which was in Seoul. Based on its official website, the Green Film Festival in Seoul (GFFIS) "is the film festival to seek the co-existence between humans and the environment through cinema. Green matters have become one of our common issues, but we still want to meet more people and share the green messages together. We are still living in the age of reckless development, environmental destruction, climate change and poverty. The GFFIS dreams of the co-existence between humans and nature, the alternatives for the future, and the ways to put ideas into action through films. Until the day all these dreams come into reality, we will be here with you and do our works.".
Has there not been update on this blog for that long?
It happens, when you are buried with work.
A month ago, RIVER OF EXPLODING DURIANS was shown at the Singapore Chinese Film Festival.
At the very same festival, I was able to meet Taiwanese directors like the legendary Li Hsing (considered a godfather of Taiwanese cinema), the influential Wan Jen (of the Taiwan New Cinema, a contemporary of Hou Hsiao-Hsien and Edward Yang's), and the much respected Yang Li-Chou (whose critically and commercially successful documentaries opened the way for Taiwanese documentaries to be shown in their cinemas).
Yesterday (19th April) was the last screening of RIVER OF EXPLODING DURIANS at the Malaysian Film Week, held in Roppongi. Thanks for organizing the screenings, Malaysia Film Week. And thanks to Ando-sensei for doing the Q and A session after the screening.
During the past two Saturdays, through some stroke of coincidence, or maybe because they were fortuitous days, quite a few weddings were held.
So, for two consecutive Saturdays, I attended weddings of old friends from primary school. One was Jasmine, a dear friend from then to now, another was Iong Ying, a friend whom I kept in touch with intermittently, but he had done a lot trying to keep us all connected.
After all, at this day and age, I guess it's quite rare to still be able to remain connected with friends from primary school! That's even harder than high school! Yet we did, with our teacher Tu Lao Shi (Lao Shi as in "Teacher", Tu as in her family name, although her actual English spelling is Thor, which gives her an even cooler name, Teacher Thor), starting from Friendster groups to Facebook groups to Whatsapp groups, whatever it was, we kept up with times.
It's not that we communicate that much, but the line of communication is still there. No one is lost forever. Perhaps that's the beauty.