South East Asian film fund, Purin Pictures has handed out $170,000 of finance to a quintet of regional movie projects.
Established last year and launched officially in Busan, the fund has shifted up a gear. An open project submission process has replaced previous reliance on project markets and grant organizations such as Busan’s Asian Cinema Fund or the Rotterdam Festival’s Hubert Bals Fund. Purin has also teamed with White Light Post to come up with its first grant for a film in post-production.
Purin’s Spring 2018 session will provide $30,000 each to: black comedy “Return of the Owl” directed by Martika Escobar and produced by Monster Jimenez of the Philippines; relationship drama “Sometime, Sometime” directed by Jacky Yeap Swee Leong, and produced by Tan Chui Mui from Malaysia; surrealist drama “Taste” to be directed by Le Bao, and produced by Singapore’s Lai Weijie, and Vietnam’s Thao Dong Thi Phuong; and “The Edge of Daybreak,” directed by Taiki Sakpisit and produced by Soros Sukhum (Thailand/Australia). All four directors are making their feature debut.
The $50,000 post-production grant is awarded to an untitled project about a son who contemplates the life of his dying Communist father who now lives alone as a political asylum seeker in Germany. The film is directed by Cha Escala and produced by Leizyl Badion of the Philippines.
The fund is operated by director Anocha Suwichakornpong (“By Thr Time it Gets Dark”), who serves as its artistic director, and director producer Aditya Assarat (“Wonderful Town,” “Hi-So”). The fund’s chief backer, the Purin Foundation co-finances the SEAFIC producers’ lab that launched in 2016. Assarat is co-director of “Ten Years Thailand,” which will have its premiere this month in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes.
“This session was a new step for us. We were happy with the interest and high number of submissions from the region. There is definitely no shortage of talent in Southeast Asia,” said Suwichakornpong.