Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The Outrage, Headshot up for Asian Film Awards

The Asian Film Awards nominations were announced back in January, but I missed it somehow and just now heard that Thailand is actually represented in the sixth annual kudosfest.

Mario Maurer is a best supporting actor nominee for The Outrage. He played a young monk whose faith is shaken after he takes part in the trial over the murder of a nobleman in the woods.

And Cris Horwang is a supporting actress nominee for Pen-ek Ratanaruang's hitman thriller Headshot (Fon Tok Kuen Fah, ฝนตกขึ้นฟ้า). She plays a mysterious woman who comes to the aid of the beleaguered main character, a former policeman turned assassin who is shot and wakes up from a coma to see the world upside down.

The Outrage (U Mong Pa Mueang, อุโมงค์ผาเมือง), a retelling of Akira Kurosawa's Rashomon, also received a nomination for costume designer Noppadol Techo. Directed by ML Bhandevanop Devakula, it's a lavish production, set in northern Thailand's Lanna kingdom of the 16th century.

Thai composer Chatchai Pongprapaphan is a co-nominee for Best Composer for Wu Xia, Hong Kong director Peter Chan's martial-arts thriller starring Donnie Yen. It was also scored by Comfort Chan and Peter Kam.

Typically, the AFAs are dominated by Hong Kong and Chinese films, and that's pretty much the case again this year.

Other Southeast Asian nominees include Lovely Man from Indonesia. Teddy Soeriaatmadja is a best director nominee for the tale of a young traditional Islamic teenager from a small town who travels to Jakarta to meet her father for the first time. There, she finds out her dad's a transvestite prostitute. He's played by Donny Damara, earning a well-deserved best actor nomination.

Up for best actress is Eugene Domingo for The Woman in the Septic Tank, a Filipino indie comedy that also earned a best screenwriter nod for Chris Martinez.

Gita Novalista is nominated for best newcomer for The Mirror Never Lies from Indonesia, which is also nominated for best cinematographer for Rahmat Syaiful.

Also, young Indonesian indie filmmaker Edwin will be given the Edward Yang New Talent Award. His first feature was Blind Pig Who Wants to Fly and his sophomore effort Postcards from the Zoo, about an orphaned girl living in the Jakarta Zoo, is in competition at the Berlin International Film Festival.

The AFA jury is headed by Singaporean director Eric Khoo.

The complete list of nominees is at the AFA website.

The Asian Film Awards are set for March 19 alongside the Hong Kong International Film Festival and the Hong Kong Film Mart.

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