Thursday, February 4, 2010

IFFR 2010: Anocha's By the Time It Gets Dark gets CineMart funds

Anocha Suwichakornpong's By the Time It Gets Dark was awarded the Prince Claus Fund Film Grant at the close of CineMart 2010 on Wednesday night at the Rotterdam International Film Festival.

According to an IFFR press release, the jury chaired by documentary filmmaker Bregtje van der Haak was impressed by the “unconventional episodic storytelling” of Anocha's proposal, which is described as "a highly personal take on contemporary Thailand".

The €15,000 award, now in its tenth year, is given to a CineMart project by a filmmaker from Africa, Asia, Latin America or the Caribbean, to support early-stage project development.

Here's more about the project, via an e-mailed press release from IFFR:

The storyline chronicles the adventures and misadventures of a strong woman who is looking for freedom in the way she lives. Despite its metaphorical sounding title, the film is based on the physical realities of everyday life.

The jury is impressed by the use of unconventional 'episodic' storytelling to evoke a strong and highly personal perspective on contemporary Thailand. The story is only advanced by the inner desires of the main character, while exploring the physical realities of everyday life and digging deep into the landscapes, whether they be the factories and high rise buildings of the expanding mega polis of Bangkok or the natural beauty of Thailand. It is a portrait of Thailand that will never make it to the tourist-billboard dotted Bangkok. By The Time It Gets Dark will be the second feature film of a young, yet mature filmmaker that has already impressed the jury with her first feature film Mundane History, supported by the Hubert Bals Fund and currently in competition at IFFR.

The script evokes a strong and unique perspective on Thai culture; as marvelous sceneries combined with images and sound overtake established conventions of storytelling. To quote director Anocha Suwichakornpong, "It is my intention to make a film that digs deep into the landscapes, whether they be the man-made landscape or the natural landscape [....] it is the heroine’s inner conflicts and her emotions which remain the core of the story, and thus the main subjects of study in this film."

Anocha's Mundane History, is making its European premiere in the VPRO Tiger Awards competition at IFFR. It is among many Thai titles at the fest, which includes the premieres of Thunska Pansittivorakul's Reincarnate, Jakrawal Nilthamrong's Unreal Forest as well as Slice by Kongkiat Komesiri, Pen-ek Ratanaruang's Nymph and the short film Four Boys, White Whiskey and Grilled Mouse by Wichanon Somumjarn, produced by Anocha's Electric Eel Films.

The festival runs until Sunday.

Update: Here's a video message from Anocha, telling you why you should watch Mundane History.

(Via Extra Virgin)

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