The complete lineup for the Tiger Awards competition at the International Film Festval Rotterdam has been announced, with Visra Vichit-Vadakan's debut feature Karaoke Girl (Sao Karaoke) among the final selection.
Karaoke Girl makes its world premiere in competition alongside the previously selected 36 by Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit, which is making its European premiere in Rotterdam.
Here's the synopsis for Karaoke Girl:
Young sex worker Sa is the protagonist of Visra Vichit Vadakan’s first feature film. Sa was sent to Bangkok when she was just 15. After three years in a factory, she decided to become a sex worker in order to support her family. Four years later Vichit Vadakan met her and invited her to be the subject of this film. She documented her life in the city and in the country and also wrote a fictional script for her to act in. Karaoke Girl is made from these building blocks of real life and fiction.
Visra has directed several short films, including the award-winning In Space. She received support in 2010 from the IFFR's Hubert Bals Fund.
In addition, controversial Chinese artist Ai Weiwei is among the jury for the Tiger Awards. He won't be able to attend the festival and will judge the competition films at home in Beijing. Other jury members are Iranian-banned actress Fatemeh Motamedarya, Russian writer-director Sergei Loznitsa, Dutch filmmaker Kees Hin and Seville European Film Festival artistic director José Luis Cienfuegos.
While the Tiger Awards features competition are for directors making their first or second feature, there's also the Tiger Awards shorts competition, which this year includes a new work by veteran director Pimpaka Towira, Mae (The Mother).
IFFR runs from January 23 to February 3.