15 films have been selected as finalists in this year’s Juree Awards Singapore 2021, an annual festival of short films that celebrates and supports filmmaker communities in Asia.
The 15 shortlisted finalists comprise independent filmmakers whose submitted short films spanned a range of diverse genres including comedy, family drama, documentaries, animation and more. Beyond genre though, among the finalists this year are compelling stories that bravely tackle difficult social issues: “A Waking” by Clare Chong, “Dark Light” by Vikneshwaran Silva, and “Booking” by Haziq Adam De Silva for example, explore social themes and issues such as sexual harassment, migrant workers and the red light industry.
Whereas dark comedy, “The Greatest Adventure to Nowhere” by Wind Loke and Kylen Ho – who took the ‘Best Screenplay’ prize at last year’s National Youth Film Awards (NYFA) – takes a look at friendship and death through the eyes of a 7 year old. This year’s acclaimed list also includes the award-winning “Kua Bo”, an animation story by Ang Qing Sheng and thought-provoking, inspirational documentaries, “Eat What With Who”, “Waiting For Tokyo” and “Look At Me”.
The finalists also include graduates from schools such as the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information at Nanyang Technological University; Temasek Polytechnic; The School of Art, Design and Media in Nanyang Technological University; and the Lasalle College of The Arts.
Two top entries will be named Gold and Silver winners, who will be picked by an international panel of judges comprising Samuel Jamier, Executive Director of the New York Asian Film Festival; award-winning Singaporean filmmaker Wee Li Lin, who is widely regarded as one of the pioneer female filmmakers in Singapore having won such accolades as ‘Best Director’ at the Singapore International Film Festival, and a ‘Star Award’ at the Shanghai International Film Festival; and Takashi Homma, Managing Director of Sapporo International Short Film Festival & Market. The five LifeSG Award winners will be selected by a panel including award-winning Singaporean filmmaker and producer, Kenny Tan from Viddsee Studios; and two representatives from GovTech.
Seven finalists were also shortlisted for the LifeSG Awards – a new category created in partnership with the Government Technology Agency (GovTech). The finalists were selected based on their authentic and relatable stories of how everyday technology shapes and influences Singaporeans in their key life moments; from finding the courage to overcome challenges to how it connects important relationships.
Said Ms Nikki Loke, Viddsee’s Head of Content: “We are delighted to have received such an overwhelming number of submissions in our fourth Juree Awards Singapore. There’s never been any doubt of the filmmaking talent in Singapore, and it’s exciting to see young filmmakers being bold and creative in their storytelling, camerawork, and the use of technology and technique in their films.”
“This year especially, we’ve seen some really original films whose work explores local social-cultural nuances and spotlight topics such as sexuality, fear, isolation, mental health issues and even issues related to the ongoing pandemic. The best part is, you do not need to be a film buff or fanatic to enjoy these short films, you just have to be Singaporean and a lover of stories and entertainment,” she added.
Of the 15 finalists, two films have been nominated across both the Juree Awards Singapore 2021 and the LifeSG Award categories: “Missed Calls”, directed by Felicia Cheng; and “Kua Bo”《看无》directed by animated filmmaker Ang Qing Sheng.
In the lead up to the awards ceremony to be live streamed on 22nd October 2021, the Awards will be supported by various activities including online film screenings and webinars featuring a range of speakers from the storyteller community and industry. Gold, Silver and LifeSG Awards Finalists now stand a chance to compete for top honours in this year’s awards, including the esteemed Gold and Silver Awards; as well as the LifeSG Award, and the Audience Choice Award which goes to the filmmaker that garners the most number of public votes and likes by 20th September 2021, when the voting period closes.
The Gold winner will be awarded the Filmmaker Gold Kit, which includes a 1 This includes an Apple iPad, a Gold Plaque, Gold winner’s e-certificate, Viddsee merchandise, and a Smartphone Hero Prize Kit. The Silver winner will take home the H1n Zoom mic, a Silver Plaque, Silver winner’s e-certificate, Viddsee merchandise, and a Smartphone Hero Prize Kit.
Both the Gold and Silver Awards prizes are sponsored by the Motion Picture Association (MPA). Up to five winners will be selected by a panel of judges from Viddsee and GovTech as inaugural recipients of the LifeSG Award. Each winner will be awarded with S$5,000 cash, an Award plaque and a winner’s certificate.
Viddsee also invites members of the public to vote for their favourite film for the Audience Choice Awards, which will be picked based on the most number of ‘likes’ it receives on Viddsee.com. The voting period for the Audience Choice Awards will be until 20th September 2021. The Audience Choice Award winner will take home a Mi Box 4K HDR and Audience Choice e-certificate, while one lucky voter will stand a chance to win a pair of Beats Studio Buds worth S$219. The films are available to watch here
The results and winners for the Viddsee Juree Awards Singapore 2021 will be announced exclusively online, with the awards ceremony streamed live on YouTube and Facebook on 22nd October 2021. More information available here