Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Kalayaan, The Tour among Cinemart projects

Two Southeast Asian films with Bangkok connections -- Kalayaan from the Philippines and The Tour from Malaysia -- are among the 36 film projects for the 26th edition of the CineMart co-production market at the International Film Festival Rotterdam.

Kalayaan (Freedomland) by Adolfo Alix Jr. is to star Ananda Everingham as a soldier stationed on a remote islet in the disputed Spratly Islands -- an archipelago in the South China Sea that is claimed by China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam and Brunei. Even the neutrality of the Wikipedia page on the Spratlys is disputed.

Chris Chong Chan Fui's The Tour was the winner of the 3rd Produire au Sud Bangkok workshop, which entitled the filmmakers to attend a co-production workshop at the Festival of 3 Continents in Nantes, France.

Here is the synopsis for Kalayaan:

Julian, a soldier stationed in Kota Island, is packing his things. He is ready to leave Kalayaan, part of the Spratly Islands being claimed by China, Taiwan, Vietnam and the Philippines.

He already completed his three months of service. But news of a pending coup d'etat in Manila orders him to stay in the small island until further notice.

With nothing much to do, he spends his waiting hours walking by the beach front. His only option for survival is to cope with reality or lose his own sanity.

And here are some details about The Tour:

The Tour begins in the mountains, whirls within the city, then crashes into the sea, only to rise back again to meet its end in the mountains. A story between two tour guides in Borneo East Malaysia.

Plans are to start shooting Kalayaan in February, according to the Philippines Entertainment Portal. The Tour, meanwhile, is still in development and is planned for completion in 2011.

CineMart runs from January 25 to 29.

(Thank you Bicycle Films!)

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