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Singapore Festival to Focus on Asian Excellence for 30th Edition

For its 30th edition the Singapore International Film Festival has avoided programming novelty and instead focused on assembling excellence – mostly indie titles — from Asia and further afield.

The festival, which previously announced local filmmaker Anthony Chen’s second feature “Wet Season” as its opening night gala presentation, announced the balance of its programming on Tuesday. Other galas are set to include “Downton Abbey,” and “Nina Wu.” Hirokazu Koreeda’s “The Truth” was named as the closing film. The festival runs Nov. 21 – Dec. 1.

The nine-film competition section includes: “Dwelling in The Fuchun Mountains”; Indian animation, “Bombay Rose”; Indonesia’s “The Science of Fictions,” and “Verdict,” all of which have received favorable reception elsewhere on the festival circuit.

Prizes for the competition will be decided by a jury that includes India’’s Anurag Kashyap, Indonesia’s Nia Dinata, Malaysia’s Amir Muhammad, and Hong Kong’s Pang Ho-cheung.

One sidebar section includes Asia-Pacific festival favorites including “Balloon,” “A Girl Missing,” “Coming Home Again,” “Breathless Animals,” “No. 7 Cherry Lane,” “The Wild Goose Lake,” “Saturday Fiction,” “Babyteeth” and “The Lighthouse.”

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From outside the region, presentations include “Monos,” “Les Miserables,” “Portrait of a Lady on Fire,” and “The Two Popes.” A small midnight genre section includes “Deerskin,” and Miike Takashi’s “First Love.”

A similarly small classics section includes Bong Joon-ho’s “Memories of Murder,” and Hou Hsiao-hsien’s “Flowers of Shanghai.”

A total of 17 Singapore-made features and shorts find berths across the different sections.
Chinese actress Yao Chen will receive a Cinema Icon award, and present her latest film “Send Me To The Clouds.” Singapore’s Yao Yann Yann, key performer in both of Anthony Chen’s “Ilo Ilo” and “Wet Season,” will receive an Inspiring Woman in Film Award. Miike will receive an honorary award.

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