Saturday, June 13, 2009

World Comedy Film Festival: Festival notes

Terima kasih
I caught my first film at the World Comedy Film Festival last night -- Blind Pig Who Wants to Fly, which is not really a comedy in the strictest sense, though it is funny at times. More on that later, I hope. What was cool about catching the late-night screening at Paragon was that the director -- Edwin, who like many Indonesians has only one name -- was there, and he hung out for a Q&A afterward. In fact, there were a bunch in Indonesian guys there, adding significant numbers to the audience of about a dozen or so fervent fans of Southeast Asian cinema. Compatriot filmmaker Guntur Soeharjanto turned out to support Blind Pig. Soeharjanto's romantic comedy (?) Cinlok is showing Sunday night at SFW CentralWorld and Monday afternoon at Paragon. Edwin's Blind Pig -- a FIPRESCI Award winner at Rotterdam and a FIPRESCI/NETPAC special mention in Singapore (where it wasn't screened publicly because of censorship) -- shows once more at 1 this afternoon at SFW CentralWorld.

Not a one-off
Before the festival opened on Wednesday night, the fest's managing director Tyler Panichpakdee took a group of festival guests on a "rest and relaxation" visit to a beach resort in Phang Nga, near Phuket. They had their own comedy show and a film screening on the beach. Ahead of that exclusive event, TV Phuket got some one-on-one time with Tyler. In a video interview, Tyler says he hopes to make the World Comedy Film Festival an annual event. "I would love to have this every year. I would hate to say it's a one-off and I don't think it will be a one-off," he says.

Big and small
While I've not seen a complete list of the celebrities confirmed as guests of the festival, I have been told that there's a Wayans brother around -- "the tall one", somebody said -- as well as dwarf actor Verne "Mini-Me" Troyer, who has his own little car or scooter, which he drove down the red carpet on opening night. He has an interview coming out in Monday's Daily Xpress.

Subtitles? Subtitles!
Blind Pig featured the usual English subtitles with Thai subtitles added on a strip just below the main screen. Nice. And I'm guessing the other films are subtitled thusly. For the Thai films, I'm led to understand that the only ones that don't have English subtitles are the live-dubbed ones -- Sao Dao Tiam (Satellite Girl) and Samgler Jer Long Hon (Three Friends Meet Invisible Agent). Update: The Assembly of Thai Gags isn't subtitled either.

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