The Simpsons - Homer Evolution

Hilarious. I love this part when the T-Rex looks like Bart Simpson. That could explain the 'love-hate' relationship between him & Homer (potential prey in the prehistoric past!). Heh. Check out the clip, "The Simpsons - Homer Evolution".

Who is the winner of Philippine Lottery Jackpot--if there's really one?

The winning numbers are 11-16-42-47-31-37. And no, you can't buy the same numbers in Singapore's ToTo. Heh.

Congratulations to the winner! I believe it won't stay a mystery for long as the pressure has mounted that the winner is to be identified. As per now there has been some rumours--unverified, of course--that there is actually no winner & the prize money ($16.73 million!) is being claimed by the organization.

So there. The real winner is better be introduced. And quick!

A mystery punter in the impoverished Philippines has become an instant multi-millionaire after winning the country's biggest-ever lottery jackpot, organisers said Tuesday.

The lucky gambler will collect 741.176 million pesos (16.73 million dollars) after his numbers came up in Monday's Philippine Charity Sweepstakes draw.

The winner, who has yet to claim his prize and is likely to remain anonymous, beat odds of one in nearly 29 million to guess the right combination of six numbers between one and 55, the lottery organisers said.

In a country where one in three people live on a dollar a day, the lottery created a frenzy as the jackpot slowly built from mid-May -- there had been no winners in 86 consecutive draws.

"The number of bettors grew as the pot increased," said Manny Arazas, an accountant at the Bataan-Zambales lottery office northwest of Manila, who told AFP he heard the winner had come from his area.

"And they began betting on up to five number combinations at a time, instead of just one."

President Benigno Aquino's spokesman, Edwin Lacierda, one of the losing bettors, said anecdotal evidence suggested the lotto buzz had curbed a wildly popular illegal numbers game called "jueteng", at least temporarily.

"If it's true, then it would really be a strike against jueteng," Lacierda told reporters.

Aquino had allowed his cabinet members to bet, he added.

The influential Roman Catholic church, which frowns on gambling, ironically has kept mum over the lottery -- it too is expected to get a windfall because the sweeptakes office is among its biggest charitable donors.

Thirty percent of state lottery sales goes to a fund that the government uses to finance health programmes and select charities, including the church.

Meanwhile, the identity of Monday's winner is likely to remain a mystery for some time.

As a security measure, the lottery does not reveal the winner's name unless it has the person's consent. The winner has the option to deposit the winnings at a bank located inside the lottery's central Manila office.

From Channel NewsAsia, "Philippine lottery jackpot won by one mystery punter".

One bettor won the Philippines’ highest lotto jackpot prize of $16.7 million (741 million pesos) on Monday when the drawn numbers matched the bet of 11-16-42-47-31-37, according to the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.

The winning bettor beat the 1-in-29 million odds of picking the winning number combination and ended six months of winless 86 draws for the Grand Lotto 6/55, where bettors pick six numbers from one to 55.

Long queues of bettors on PCSO lotto stations were the scenes in the capital the whole day on Monday until the closing time for betting at 8 p.m. Many Filipinos hoped to win the whopping jackpot.

The largest ever lotto jackpot won in the country was on February 22, 2009 when two bettors won and split the 6/49 Super Lotto prize of $7.8 million (347 million pesos). Both got the winning number combination of 6-34-20-26-12-33.

From AHN, "One Lucky Bettor Wins $16.7 Million Philippines Lottery Jackpot".

So what if monthly income up by 4.2%?!

See, inflation must be factored in as well. And MAS state that Singapore inflation to rise to 4%!!

THE Singapore workforce grew to a record high, figures released by the Ministry of Manpower on Tuesday showed that the labour market (aged 15-years and above) increased from 65.4 per cent in 2009 to 66.2 per cent in 2010.

Boosted by the strong economic recovery, workers' incomes have also risen.

Median monthly income rose by 4.2 per cent over the year to $2,710 in 2010.

This is faster than the marginal growth of 0.5 per cent in 2009.

The unemployment rate now stands at 3.2 per cent or 65,500 people, down from 4.5 per cent or 90,300 persons in the same period last year.

As at June 2010, there were 2.05 million residents in the labour force, comprising 1.15 million (56%) males and 0.90 million (44%) females.

From Straits Times, "Monthly income up by 4.2%".

The Manpower Ministry (MOM) said the median monthly income of resident Singaporeans in full-time employment rose by 4.2 per cent over the year to S$2,710 in June, boosted by the strong economic recovery.

That is higher than the marginal growth of just half a per cent in 2009.

MOM said even after adjusting for the higher inflation this year, the median income rose by 1.8 per cent, recovering from a slight dip of 0.1 per cent in 2009.

Part-timers also saw a significant increase of 13 per cent in their median income to S$700 this year.

Overall, the nominal median income for all employed residents rose by 3.3 per cent to S$2,500, after falling by 1.2 per cent last year.

MOM said the growth in income this year came earlier and stronger than in the previous recovery, when the median income hardly moved from 2001 to 2006, before rising significantly in 2007.

The Ministry also said that the strong economic recovery has boosted the employment rate.

The increase in employment rate was broad-based across both prime and older age groups, especially among women. A record 71.7 per cent of women in the prime-working ages of 25 to 54 were working this year, up from 69.4 per cent in 2009.

Nevertheless, MOM said their employment rate was still below the 92.4 per cent for prime-working age men, which increased from 91.6 per cent in 2009.

The proportion of residents aged 25 to 64 in employment rebounded to a new high of 77.1 per cent from 75.8 per cent in 2009, after falling by 1.2 percentage-points from the preceding year due to the economic downturn.

The employment rate for older residents aged 55 to 64 rose to a new high of 59.0 per cent in 2010, after holding steady at 57.2 per cent over the past two years.

The rise was largely contributed by a marked increase in proportion of older women in employment from 40.1 per cent in 2009 to 43.4 per cent in 2010.

The employment rate for older men was also at a record high of 75.0 per cent in 2010.

Supported by the economic recovery, the resident unemployment rate and number improved significantly from 4.5 per cent in June 2009 to 3.2 per cent in June 2010.

From Channel NewsAsia, "Median income of Singaporeans rose 4.2% in 2010: MOM".

The central bank said the inflation rate will rise by the end of 2010 and stay high in the first half of 2011.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore highlighted higher price pressures from car, commodity, accommodation and domestic oriented services, with the ultimate expectation that “with the economy already operating at close to full employment, labor cost pressures have picked up and will persist into 2011”.

In a statement, MAS said the underlying inflation is expected “to average around 2% in 2010 and 2- 3% in 2011”. It also explicitly noted that “the balance of risks is weighted towards inflation going forward.”

Partially quoted from Singapore Business Review, "Singapore inflation to rise to 4%: MAS".

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Chapter 9


Title : Her Story?
a work by Team: SINdie
Duration: 4mins 50s
Year:Nov 2010

We will end the chapters with a epilogue in our next post...

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Chapter 8

As promised,
Here's a clip that what we are supposed to post up at 12pm today...
Raymond,our "POP CULTURE junkie" ,gives his take on our work..."HER STORY?"

Work will be uploaded REAL SOON!

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Chapter 7

Time Check: 28 Nov, 2:10AM
Time Left:10 hours to go...
Location:Still in "Editing Suite"

Raymond comes into the suite to give us opinions!
Discussion in progress...what is the content about...Find out tomorrow at 12pm!

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Chapter 6

Time Check: 28 Nov, 0:12AM
Time Left:12 hours to go...
Location:Still in "Editing Suite"

Jeremy taking a breather...
...And he's Back to work

Reviewing the sequence...

Picking the Song...(Headache)

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Chapter 5

Time Check: 23:04 PM

Location:Editing Suite...

Purpose:Post Production!

Before I share about the post Productions,let's see what we did throughout the last 12 hours!

Who is she?You will Find OUT!

Mel does an act of frustration and Dare is crazily typing on this blog...

Jeremy's Starts to ponder...About WHAT?

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Chapter 4

Time Check: 3pm
Location:Telok Blangah
Purpose:Out For Location Shoot

Off we go!
On our location...Setting Off...

Decided to try our luck at this place...But ARGH!

Jeremy:We are back...after a wild goose chase!
Getting everything on set...

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Chapter 3

Making it look like 'history'

Coffee anyone?

Housewife material

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Chapter 2

Time Check: 11am
Location:Boon Keng
Purpose:Working on one of our character in the video...

There We Are...

There we have the Chatting in progress...
Getting into the heart of the matter

The very 1st thing we need to do...

Fly By NIght Video Challenge 2010 - Chapter 1

The time was 2330 hrs, we had not decided on the 'big idea' yet, but glad to have air-con.

Fly By NIght Survival Kit - instructions, camera, tote bag and coffee

Melody brings on her Production Assistant skills from Ho Tzu Nyen's 'Endless Day' on to the SINdie production set

Darren has an idea!

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010: Prologue

6:33pm Here I KAMPONG GLAM!

Welcoming guest to the "World" of Malay Culture at the Malay Heritage Centre

WE ARE TEAM Number 2!

Let's Play a game:Guess who are these 2 "Mak-ciks"?

Introducing the Judging Panel...Sanif and Jacen

7:30pm: And the Theme for this Year...


Signing off!

Red Riding Hood 2011

Red Riding Hood.This ought to be one of those shows I'm looking forward to watching next year.

Who is Sim Keng Tee aka the Pervert 2010?

This pervert is apparently a nobody. No trace on his identity on the Net can be found. (And why am I doing that? Well, just wonder what other dark secrets this Sim Keng Tee has.)

From how the story goes, he seemed to have a lot of free time while working as a civilian officer in the Singapore Police Force. So free he could masturbate during office hour?! Hmm...talking about poor supervision. Tsk tsk...

Sim Keng Tee, 39, pleaded guilty on Wednesday afternoon to two charges of mischief where he tainted two of his female colleagues' drinking water with his semen.

This was two of 10 offences he pleaded guilty to in court. The names of victims were not revealed to protect their identities.

The civilian officer in the Singapore Police Force mixed semen into his colleagues' drinking water on two separate occasions in 2008 at his office along Irrawady Road. He has since been relieved of his position in the police force.

On February 21 2008, he masturbated to a photograph of his female colleague, and collected the semen in a small bottle. He recorded himself doing this on his handphone.

He then returned to his office and waited for her to leave her desk temporarily. When she did, Sim mixed his semen with the drinking water in her water bottle. He also recorded this.

As the water bottle was tinted red the victim did not realise the water was no longer clear.

Sim then struck up a conversation with the victim when she returned to her desk and secretly recorded her drinking the tainted water.

Two months later, on April 2, 2008, Sim repeated his actions with a second female colleague.

This time, instead of pouring the semen into her water bottle, he poured it into her bottle of green tea.

As the bottle was wrapped in plastic, the victim did not realise the difference. Again Sim, struck up a conversation with his victim while he recorded her drinking the water mixed with his semen.

Sim saved these videos on his personal computer at home.

These videos and more were discovered in a police raid conducted in 2009 when a third female colleague reported him to the authorities after she caught him taking up-skirt photos of her.

The police raid also revealed that Sim had taken videos of four of his colleagues and had organised the videos on his personal computer into separate folders named after each victim.

How he was discovered

On September 10, 2009, Sim approached a colleague at her desk and asked her to pass him a stack of documents.

While she was standing up, Sim squatted on the opposite side of the desk.

When she turned around, she noticed that Sim was holding his mobile phone under her skirt.

After a struggle, she managed to grab the phone and discovered the upskirt shots of herself.

She then reported the matter.

In court today, Sim pleaded for leniency saying he had voluntarily put himself through medical check ups and counselling sessions.

Further to the 10 charges that Sim pleaded guilty to, another 149 charges will be taken into consideration for sentencing to be held on December 1, 2010.

For intending to intrude upon the privacy of a woman, Sim faces imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year or a fine, or both, for each of the eight charges at hand.

He also faces imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year or a fine, or both, for each of the two charges of mischief faced.

From Asiaone, "Man admits to tainting colleagues' drinking water with semen".

PS. The uproar seems limited with only 3 comments so far in Reach, "Condemn HETEROSEXUAL PRANKS !!!!!!!".

Update on 01/12: A jail term of 18 months. That's it. No caning. This Sim Keng Tee is quite lucky, I'd say.

THE man who tainted his female colleagues' water and tea with his semen and secretly recorded them drinking was jailed for 18 months on Wednesday.

Sim Keng Tee, 35, then a civilian officer with the Singapore Police Force, was convicted last week of two counts of mischief and eight charges of intruding into the privacy of his female colleagues and unknown women.

Sim, who had a total of 159 charges, had masturbated to a photograph of a woman colleague on Feb 21, 2008 and collected the semen in a small bottle.

He recorded the act on his mobile phone. He returned to his office and waited for the victim to leave temporarily so that he could mix his semen with the drinking water in her water bottle. He also recorded this. He then chatted with her and secretly recorded her drinking the tainted water.

He struck again two months later with another female colleague. He poured the semen into her water bottle of green tea. While talking to her, he recorded her drinking the water mixed with his semen.

His offences came to light in September last year when a third female colleague caught him taking upskirt photos of her.

From Straits Times, "Jailed for semen drink".

Confessions - Kokuhaku

Can't wait to watch this highly praised film "Confessions" ("Kokuhaku").

It begins in the classroom. A devastated mother, an ice-cold teacher, Moriguchi sensei is looking for the murderer of her four year old daughter, a student from her own class. In a series of cruel, and horrific acts, Confessions is a disturbing film that plunges into a world of obsession, retribution and vengeance. From Tetsuya Nakashima, director of Kamikaze Girls and Memories of Matsuko, Confessions has become a massive box office hit that has left the whole of Japan on the edge of its seat.

Quoted from the 14th Japanese Film Festival, "Confessions".

Confessions © 2010 TOHO / Hakuhodo DY Media Partners / Faith Wonderworks / LICRI / Futabasha Publishers / NIPPON SHUPPAN HANBAI / Yahoo Japan / TSUTAYA Group All Rights Reserved.

YouTube trailer with English subtitle, "Confessions"

Viewpoint from a filmmaker - Martyn See

We continue with a series of responses from local filmmakers on the current regulation and/or censorship system in Singapore. This is an ongoing project initiated by a group of students from LASALLE. Discussions and exchange of views are encouraged between members of the public and arts practitioners on the regulatory issue of films in Singapore. View our previous interviews here.

We find out what local filmmaker, Martyn See has to say:

1. During the process of making a film, have you ever felt restricted by any regulatory boundaries set by MDA? If yes, in what ways?
Yes, Section 33 of the Films Act prohibits political films. Section 14 requires all films to be submitted for censorship.

2. If for artistic purposes, would you make a film which you know might attract censors or cuts but still continue to do it anyway? Why?
Yes, it is not the job of artists/filmmakers to self censor.

3. In the Arts Community Position Paper, it is suggested that regulation should be implemented in place of censorship, as the former involves objective classification that is not politically-motivated. What is your view?
Agree. No work should be censored, or cut, or altered. But we can regulate the kind of audience, by way of age group, to access these works.

4. Two of MDA’s guiding principles behind its regulatory work are to uphold community values and to safeguard national and public interest. What is your view?
These are vague terms. The individual's right of expression should come first.

5. Have you participated in any discussion programmes or feedback consultations with regards to content regulation initiated by MDA? Would you participate in future? Why?
No, I have never been invited or requested or summoned by MDA for anything.

6. What do you have to say about the censoring/banning of content in films screened in local theatres which are still obtainable on the Internet?
Makes censorship of films ridiculous.

Want to add your 2 cents worth? Join us in an open discussion on facebook


Looks like morning in your eyes

Never something I could hide
When I see we made it through another day 

- Nora Jones

Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010

We are IN for the CRAZE! So Will YOU!

And we will be REPORTING LIVE!
Specially for this weekend!

SINdie will be involved in the Fly By Night Video Challenge 2010 and we will report LIVE from 7:30PM onwards on 26 NOVEMBER 2010
Bookmark Us to follow us as we embark on a crazy Journey to do a 5 mins short in 1 WEEKEND!

Photo Exhibition : Tourists

Exhibition : Tourists
by Dow Wasiksiri
on December 11, 2010 - January 30, 2011
at Kathmandu Photo Gallery, Bangkok

In ‘Tourists’, famous Thai photographer Dow Wasiksiri trains his sensitive, observant eye on a new tribe of humans. Ignoring landscapes and historic monuments, Dow turned his camera instead on the strange customs and dress of his fellow tourists, local and foreign. These colourful, cartoonish candid shots reveal, beyond the need for amusement, their subjects’ yearning to see themselves as the discoverer of new worlds, before heading back to the humdrum struggle of their daily lives.

'Taking it all off and out' for comedy - soundbites from the preview of 'When Hainan Meets Teochew'

What a treat it is to be invited to a cozy private screening of a new local film, yet to be seen by a significant number of others (evil laugh). Discounting the flight of stairs up to Sinema Old School, it was an unpretentious gathering of familiar faces, as unpretentious as 'boy-next-door' Yew Kwang himself. The film did conjure a few surprises which led to my eager fishing of quotes from the actors.

Chau Min, the lead actress shares about having to 'take it off' for a scene.

Lead actor Hong Chai shares about the challenge of doing the important kiss.

Blogger from A Nutshell Review Stefan Shih shares his thoughts about the film.

FM100.3 DJ Lin Weidong shares his thoughts about the film.

Just reading out loud...

"Beauty can't amuse you, but brain work - reading, writing, thinking - CAN."

 --- Helen Gurley Brown (former international editor of Cosmopolitan)

LUNCHBOX 6 - Anthony Chen

We simply went the distance for this LUNCHBOX. No prizes for guessing where we went to catch our subject.

Sunday 21 Nov, 10 pm

Changi Airport Terminal 3

Jeremy (J): So apart from the film I helped out in, what other things are you doing right now?

Anthony (A): Currently working on my first feature film. Hopefully we will go into the production in the middle of next year.

J: Are you in the scripting stage?

A: Yes, in the scripting stage and trying to complete financing on that film. Then, hopefully we could start pre-production in January.

J: Is this going to be done in London or Singapore?

A: Singapore. (pause) It’s very important that I make my first film in Singapore.

J: So how are you straddling between the two countries? I assume you are based in London?

A: I would say based between Singapore and London.

J: What do you do when you are back there?

A: Load of development meetings. I am developing a few different projects there. Meetings with production companies and producers…. Developing other features…but this is a long process and you’ve probably have heard of the term development hell. (pause) Hopefully I will be doing some commercials in London but it’s quite tough because I am not physically there all the time. So it’s hard to do the shorter projects there.

J: So what can the audience from your feature film?

A: It’s exploring the same themes that I have always been doing – family drama. Very much in the same genre as Ah Ma, Haze and even the latest short I made in the UK. It’s about growing up, coming-of-age, family. Subconsciously, it has become something that is recurring in my films. At the same time, I think it is also because of some of the directors that I really like… directors like Edward Yang, Hou Hsien Hsien, Kore-eda whom I love a lot. Erm… Ang Lee too.

J: Has the London experience had any influence on your films?

A: The reason why I desperately want to make the feature in Singapore is because it addresses what I am about and where I am from. At the same, I think there would be quite a few collaborations with Europe in terms of the crew and even post-production. I think is going to be some form of collaboration, be it in sound or cinematography. I think that probably is the nearest link to London. (pause) With Hotel 66, I really, which was shot in London, I really wanted to explore the stylistic part of myself, that’s why it was a little heavy on production design. (pause) For the film that I am doing in Singapore, hopefully it is simple and humble. Not trying to be anything. You might not have seen it but I actually made another short film after Hotel 66, which was very back to basic, very personal, very observational kind of storytelling.

J: This is probably something a lot of the younger filmmakers will be interested to know. After having the Cannes and Berlin exposure (and you know not everyone can get that) and with the media playing it up in tiny little Singapore, did things get a lot of easier for you? In terms of your career? And how about being an Asian in Europe pursuing your vision?

A: Probably not easier in Singapore, unless you really up-play certain things and you are hungry to do just anything and everything. But I am quite picky and selective about what I do… and I don’t think I have been doing ‘proper’ work for the past 6 years. I have always been doing pro-bono, non-profit work. I have never really made money. (pause) Interestingly, I observed things to be a little different in Europe. People, I mean, producers make the effort to understand the filmmaker before making any decisions. Also, they seem to value the film festival credentials of the film more in Europe than in Singapore. Things are a little more pragmatic here.

J: I guess I am coming from the point of view of a person who wants to know the ‘route’ or to put it a bit awkwardly, the ‘route to success’?

A: Mm…. I may not be the best person to answer this! (laughs) However, and I can only say it in my case, I have had an easier time in Europe than in Singapore. (pause) Just digressing a little, the ways things work over there is quite different. You walk into a meeting with producers and you realized that they have done their due diligence on you. And I am also able to get feedback from these producers through my agent. In a way, the environment is very nurturing and it does not only apply to filmmakers but writers and people in other creative capacities as well.

J: Actually what you said is not very new. We all know too well how things work here. There are ‘KPI’s to be met – you know what’s a KPI?

A: Yes. I know that very well (laughs).

J: Sadly, this is true not only in film, but also in many other professions that also involve creativity. Perhaps society needs to change before you even talk about a sector like film. (pause) Actually I would like to link this to my next question. Erm, it is something you brought up when we met at the National Museum last month. You mentioned that you observed that many Singaporean filmmakers are churning out a lot of films, causing a dilution of the quality of films here or what a film may be truly defined as. But you know, some people will tell you that this is the age in which anyone with mobile phone can also make a film, who are you to tell…

A: Yeah, I mean it’s true and it’s about this whole purist dilemma. But I don’t think it is about the budget. In fact, one of the first films I am going to make after my feature is going to be really low-budget, like no-lighting, small crew, non-actors. I believe the story can be told that way but I feel it is very important that there is a certain form of discipline in the filmmaking. I am not into the whole ‘to be a filmmaker, you need to go to film school’ saying because there brilliant filmmakers who did not have formal education. Perhaps because in the past, it was so difficult to make films, so there was a lot of thinking before launching into something. (pause)

So I just think people need to think further than just to go ‘You know I am free this weekend, let’s make a film’ or ‘I am going to shoot a feature in one day. You know it’s realty interesting,. I just came back from Taiwan and had a very interesting discussion with a filmmaker friend of mine there. He said you can’t dictate what film is because film means something different to everyone. I tend to agree because some people see film as art, some people see film as a tool to make money. Some people see film as a political device. Some people see film as something that can be put on YouTube.

I think we, in Singapore, are in a very awkward position because we are not in a homogeneous society. We’re not Korea, China, Taiwan. We do not have a product that just caters to our local population. So it makes it very important that the product can travel overseas. So in a way, you need some form of branding. Among my Taiwanese and Hong Kong friends, it is slightly easier because of their history or heritage of films. But for us, it is more difficult. We have to fight so hard to convince people.

I just came back from a film financing forum and learnt a few things. I looked at the box office numbers of Singaporean films for the past twenty year. 8 to 9 out of 10 films lost a lot of money and you are looking at films with stars in it. The only films that constantly make money is films by Jack Neo. We don’t even need to look at the figures to know they make money. In fact, every single film, clocks a minimum of one million. One the other hand, there are films that make only 3000 in Singapore when it cost half a million to make. So in a way, we need to sell our product. Unless we can recover that costs, there is no way to get investors interested. Or they will say they will give you 10,000 to make it. But with 10,000, you can’t do very much that is fit enough to be picked up by the distributors. So, we don’t want to be trapped in this vicious cycle.

One top of this, film branding is not just influenced by the people working in that particular film itself. It can also be influenced by the general perception of films from that country by the rest of the world. You can be an award-winning filmmaker or an amateur filmmaker, all of us make up the general picture that is being judged by others. As a matter of fact, Singapore does indeed send 300 – 400 short films out to film competition overseas every year but the general tide of opinion towards them have not always been positive. Sometimes that can become a vicious cycle because our credibility is affected.

It also does not help that the films that are doing well in the film festival circuit are really arthouse, making it difficult for investors to be convinced about financing our films. So the moral of the story seems to be that we either make really bad films or we make arthouse films that are good but hard to sell.

J: Do you think the loophole in this is the ‘excessive submission’, so in fact we should continue to encourage filmmaking but to let the filmmakers know the difference between a film fit for a competition and a film good enough as a classroom project or for self-amusement.

A: I think it is interesting but I won’t name the person. I know the previous head of film school in Singapore who actually stopped his students from submitting certain films to festivals because he felt they were not good enough to go out. So I feel in a way, we need to contain…..

J: Opportunistic behaviour?

A: No not really… what I mean is everyone has a part to play to uphold a certain standard of filmmaking quality. And I am not talking about the medium. It could be really low quality, shot on DV, but what I saying is the quality of the story. I am sure there will be people who will argue against that because it is very hard to decide what is a good or bad film. It is subjective. But generally, everyone needs to come together to uphold the standards so that we are not known as people who are churning out quantity. In some years, we can get as many as 30 feature films, I think that year was the year when Lucky 7 and 881 were out. It is really huge for a country like Singapore.

(pause) You know, I am also noticing that people are thinking that it is very easy to be a filmmaker, in Singapore especially. Particularly in Singapore, everyone only wants to be the director, they forget that there are many other interesting roles to fill as well. Also, the media seems to be propagating that it is easy to be a Royston Tan or Boo Junfeng and that suddenly, so many local films are making it to Cannes, Berlin and Venice. But what many people may fail to see is that filmmakers could be working 20 hours a day, not earning much, no bread, no butter. It’s really tough. I think peple need to understand that there is something called ‘madness’ when it comes to filmmaking and you really need to …

J: Be a little mad.

A: And you really need to be risking a lot. It’s not really that glitzy. There is no ‘Light Camera Action’ red carpet whatever. It is so easy to think that that’s filmmaking but it really is not. I have been making films for a couple years and the day before my shoot, I am still sourcing for last-minute props, trying to solve production problems and all that. It’s not comfy at all. It’s really tough. People need to realize that it is not easy. It’s a tough route.

Some people are stirred up by the illusion that it is cool to be part of the film industry and the great number of film schools around here seems to support this buzz. But they don’t know that the money isn’t there. Jobs are tough. There is a lot of crap you have to go through. That is not being told. I am fine with the media encouraging people to go into filmmaking but people need to know the pitfalls. People need to be mentally prepared for that.

J: I guess what then happens subsequently is the drop out. True enough people want to get into it but at the same time, there is high drop out. So by the ecological balancing forces of it, people get eliminated and then realize that they might have a better future in TV or advertising. So in fact, people do see the reality after a while.

A: I don’t doubt that but I am just wondering if it is worth their time to go through 4 year of film school and only realize this is not for them after that. I mean even I am starting to feel that it is really tough./ You know in Taiwan they have this saying that you must be either dumb or crazy if you want to be a filmmaker (如果要拍片, 你不是傻子就是疯子。)

J: You kinda answered the last question I have for you – ‘Would you starve for the sake of art?’

A: (laughs) I have been starving so much you have no idea what I have been through. There are times when I so enjoy going to production so much, even my own because there is always catered food or 杂菜饭 (mixed rice) or whatever. Or if the shoot starts too early, you get to claim the taxi. So on $20 you can use it to take taxi again and there if free food……. You just feel so blessed to be on the production!

'Calling all passengers on flight SQ.................' and off he runs into the departure gates. I shouted across to say I wanted to see the finished product of his recent shoot.

Check the time on the clock!

Blog Archive