Singapore has selected cross-generational relationship drama “Wet Season” as its national representative in the Academy Awards best international feature film category. It is the second time that a film by Anthony Chen represents the country in the Oscars race, following his “Ilo Ilo” in 2013.
The announcement was made on Tuesday by the Singapore Film Commission.
“It is a thought-provoking film which explores human relationships and emotions through the lens of a central female character grappling with her personal identity and marriage. The film has been well received by audiences in several film festivals and we are proud to continue supporting more made-with-Singapore films that transcend boundaries and evoke conversations,” said SFC director Joachim Ng in a statement.
The film stars Yeo Yann Yann and youngster Koh Jia Ler, in his second Chen film. Both received recognition for their roles as a teacher and student, respectively. Yeo’s performance in the film earned her best actress award wins at both the Golden Horse Film Awards and the Pingyao International Film Festival. Chen was named best director at the International Film Festival & Awards Macao.
The predominantly Chinese-language film was produced by Chen’s Giraffe Pictures in association with now defunct streaming platform Hooq and Chinese boutique financier Rediance. International sales are handled by France-based Memento Films.
It had its world premiere at last year’s Toronto International Film Festival and its commercial release in Singapore on Nov. 28, 2019. Commercial theatrical releases in other territories were scheduled for the early part of 2020, but in some cases these have been delayed by the coronavirus outbreak which caused cinema closures around the Asia region.
Singapore has submitted films for Oscars consideration in most years since 2005. None have yet received nomination or been shortlisted. Eric Khoo’s 2005 hopeful “Be With Me” was disqualified after its official Oscars screening for containing too much English dialog.