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IFFAM: ‘Lost Paradise,’ ‘Ajooma,’ ‘Dogman’ win Project Market Awards

“Lost Paradise,” from Macau and Hong Kong, won the best project award at the 3rd International Film Festival & Awards Macao’s project market.

To be directed by Tracy Choi Ian-sin and produced by Lai Ching-man, the film will look at a girl’s breakdown after sexual harassment. The story is to be told from the point of view of a close friend.

The award carries a cash prize of $15,000. The producer-director duo will use the funds to find a scriptwriter and develop the project further. The aim is to raise the $1.3 million budget from Hong Kong and Taiwan, with a view to starting principal photography in 2020. Choi previously directed 2017’s “Sisterhood,” that won the most promising talent award at the Osaka Asian film festival and scored nominations at the Hong Kong film awards.

The best co-production award and a cash prize of $10,000 went to Singapore’s “Ajoomma,” about a widow finding a new purpose in life who gets lost on a trip to Korea. The budget is $1.1 million, of which $30,000 has been secured. He Shuming, director of several shorts, and a graduate of the Puttnam school of film and animation at Singapore’s Lasalle College of the Arts, will direct. In 2015, “Ajoomma” won most promising project at the Singapore International Film Festival’s Southeast Asian film lab and an award at Thailand’s SEAFIC in November. Anthony Chen, whose directorial debut “Ilo Ilo” won the Camera d’Or at Cannes, will produce alongside Tan Si En, who was an assistant producer on globally acclaimed film “Pop Aye.”

Argentinian revenge drama, “Dogman” won the creative excellence award that carries a cash prize of $10,000. Genre filmmaker Tamae Garateguy (“Pompeya,” “Shewolf”) will direct. Producer Silvia Rodriguez has raised $177,000 of the $691,000 budget so far.

“Wonderland” won the Macao Spirit Award and that comes with $5,000 in cash. It will be directed by Chao Koi Wang (“March Rhapsody”) and produced by Gao Yi Tian (“An Elephant Sitting Still”).

The jury this year included filmmaker Evan Louis Katz (“Cheap Thrills”), producer Philip Lee (“Cloud Atlas”) and TorinoFilmLab head of industry Jane Williams.

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