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‘Exile’ finds home at Lau’s Focus

$3 million pic stars 'Divergence' thesp Kwok

Andy Lau’s Focus Films has set veteran helmer Patrick Tam’s “After This Our Exile” as its next release– one of a slew of announcements Focus made at the FilMart event in Hong Kong on Tuesday.

The $3 million pic, about the violent relationship between a gambler and his young son, stars Aaron Kwok (“Divergence”). Hong Kong’s Widescreen Pictures and Beijing Polybona Film Publishing produced.

Pic will be released at the end of August in Hong Kong, China, Taiwan and other parts of Asia. Hong Kong distribution will be handled by Golden Scene while Focus will handle worldwide sales.

Focus is the only sales house to enter the Indonesian market, picking up rights for helmer Joko Anwar’s “Joni’s Promise,” about a boy who delivers film prints.

Because Indonesian films haven’t penetrated the international market, companies are taking time to figure out how to market the pics elsewhere, said Focus marketing consultant Lorna Tee.

Pic was in the top three at Indonesia’s B.O. last year. It will unspool in Hong Kong Film Festival, which begins April 4.

Focus also acquired helmer Tan Pin Pin’s “Singapore Gaga,” the first documentary to gain a theatrical release in Singapore.

Focus is looking into TV as well as a theatrical release for the doc about how music plays into the lives of people on the fringes of Singapore culture.

Focus also has a Malaysian pic under its belt. Helmer James Lee’s “Before We Fall in Love Again” is about a man who loses his wife and then befriends her lover. Shot in digital video, it is now in post-production. It’s expected to bow in Malaysia this summer.

Meanwhile, the first two films from Focus’ First Cuts project, which sponsored six young directors from across Asia, have hit screens.

“I’ll Call You,” helmed by Hong Kong’s Lam Tze-chung, premiered Sunday in Hong Kong and will open in theaters Thursday. It will bow next in Singapore, followed by Malaysia.

Pic, about modern love, will be in competition at the Udine Far East Film Festival in Italy and is the closing film at the Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum during FilMart.

“The Shoe Fairy” was released in Taiwan and Singapore. The Robin Lee-helmed love story will open in Hong Kong on April 6.