Local film-makers to collaborate with public on stories of diversity

Local film-makers to collaborate with public on stories of diversity

Directors Eric Khoo, Kelvin Tong, K Rajagopal and Sanif Olek will co-create four short films together with members of the public.

directors collage

SINGAPORE: In Singapore's first crowdsourced short film initiative, four local directors will work with members of the public to produce short films on stories of diversity.

Project Lapis Sagu, a collaboration with the Ministry of Communications and Information, will see acclaimed directors Eric Khoo, Kelvin Tong, K Rajagopal and Sanif Olek creating films of between three and 10 minutes each based on story ideas submitted by the public.

The initiative is part of ongoing efforts to promote greater understanding and mutual respect between locals and foreigners in Singapore, the ministry said on Wednesday (Nov 16).

The project kicks off with a contest to find the best four story ideas, which will be used by the directors to produce the films. Members of the public can submit story ideas at www.lapis-sagu.sg through a logline submission of up to 30 words. The closing date for submission is Dec 11, and the winning entries will be announced on Dec 15.

Winners will be mentored by the four film-makers and see their story ideas come to life on the big screen. Each winner or winning team will receive a cash prize of S$5,000.

The films will premiere in March next year.

Rajagopal said the project was not just about collaborating with other film-makers, but with “like-minded people in the public who have stories and experiences to share about tolerance, integration and acceptance of each other’s differences”.

“I’d like to see their honesty in telling stories that will connect, that have a heart, that speak to the audience,” added Olek.

“Storytelling through film has the ability to bring people together. We hope to create impactful shorts that bring us closer as a community, embracing our diversity and appreciating our differences,” Khoo said.

Tong added: “As a small country, we are more aware of how differences can affect our lives. While human relationships can be complex, the need to connect and desire to get along with one another is a natural human instinct. For me, this is simply a matter of gum buay gum (‘getting along or not’ in Hokkien).”

Source: CNA/cy