Singapore Media Festival Mixes Business With Pleasure

Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF)

The Singapore Media Festival pitches itself as an opportunity for “cross-collaboration, industry investment and celebrating creativity and talent.”

Events got under way Thursday night (Nov 26) with the opening of the Singapore film festival. In the next few days more serious business matters kick in, with conferences and seminars whose topics range from the nuts and bolts of formats to the threat to conventional business posed by OTT content and delivery.

However, the succeeding week presents a recurring pattern that alternates business with lighter hearted elements.

The ten day panoply that is this year’s SMF combines: markets for film and TV (Asia Television Forum & Market); a showcase for regional film (the SGIFF); a knowledge exchange (ATF conference and ScreenSingapore); and two awards ceremonies (Asia Television Awards and the SGIFF’s Silver Screen Awards).

New this year is the addition of Branded’s Digital Matters forum, a conference series that examines the business-to-business-to-fan continuum enabled by digital delivery and social media. It includes teen-focussed workshops and opportunities to meet online stars.

“Our stronger focus on digital content at this year’s SMF promotes greater collaboration and partnership across the Film, TV and digital sectors – a key differentiator from other traditional film and TV events,” says Robert Gilby, chairman of the SMF Advisory Board and MD of the Walt Disney Company (SEA).

“The new elements at this year’s SMF will also strengthen investment opportunities for media players, establishing SMF’s valued position as a key connector and platform for global media players venturing into Asia, and for Asian media professionals going global.”

Singapore’s general public gets a look in most particularly through the SGIFF. And for those tripping down memory lane there are cast reunions – and projections from digitally restored copies – of Eric Khoo’s “Mee Pok Man” and Yonfan’s “Bugis Street.” Both films are 20 this year. For the more politically aware there is acclaimed Iranian filmmaker, Mohsen Makhmalbaf

“By paying tribute to Mohsen Makhmalbaf – a man who has used cinema profoundly as a tool to create change and convey hope – we also hope to expand conversations and perspectives on filmmaking, and inspire future generations of filmmakers to continue telling the Asian story,” says Mike Wiluan, SGIFF chairman.

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