Singapore – Champion of the region’s film talents, the 27th Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF) will cast a spotlight on three Singaporean filmmakers as part of its line-up this year. K. Rajagopal’s first feature film, A Yellow Bird was shortlisted as one of the Asian feature films in competition as part of the Silver Screen Awards; a tribute to Singapore’s film maker, late Abdul Nizam will be announced during the festival to celebrate his instrumental role and contribution to the industry; and SGIFF’s commissioned short film by Singapore filmmaker Gladys Ng will make its world premiere during the opening of the festival.
A co-production between Singapore and France, A Yellow Bird made its world premiere this year during the International Critics’ Week, a parallel section to the 69th Cannes Film Festival and a launch pad of auteurs such as Hong Kong’s Wong Kar Wai, Mexico’s Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu and France’s Jacques Audiard.
A Yellow Bird will be competing with nine other Asian feature films in four categories – Best Film, Best Director, Best Performance and Special Mention – as part of the Silver Screen Awards. The SGIFF will also pay tribute to the late Abdul Nizam for the instrumental role he played in the resurgence of Singapore cinema in the late 1990s. He directed Haura, which was part of Singapore’s first digital-video feature film Stories About Love (2000), and was also the winner of the Best Singapore Film, with his graduate work Datura at SGIFF in 1999.
This year also sees the introduction of a new initiative that seeks to nurture and showcase up-and-coming Singapore filmmakers, where SGIFF will commission a new short film by a Singapore filmmaker every year that will make its world premiere at the festival. Gladys Ng, winner of SGIFF 2015’s Best Singapore Short Film, is the first filmmaker to be commissioned under this initiative. Her short film, The Pursuit of A Happy Human Life film will be screened during the opening of the festival.
As an internationally recognised platform in Southeast Asia for the discovery of independent cinema, the SGIFF is committed to enhance the art and innovation of filmmaking in telling the stories of Asia and the world. The 27th edition of SGIFF, which runs from 23 November to 4 December 2016, will take place across various venues.