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CALL FOR ENTRIES: SeaShorts Film Festival 2020

2 March 2020


CALL FOR ENTRIES: SeaShorts Film Festival 2020

The road to SeaShorts Film Festival 2020 has officially begun as the festival is currently accepting works until 30 April.

Qualified directors from across the ASEAN region are invited to apply by the deadline of 30 April. In keeping with the theme “Reimagining Short Films, Reinventing Southeast Asia”, submissions in all genres and forms under 20 minutes are considered.

A selection of 30 titles will be in contention for the SeaShorts Award, with the Next New Wave Award reserved exclusively for Malaysian directors. Outstanding achievement in direction, screenwriting, cinematography, editing, sound, and acting round off the rest of the categories.

A selection of 30 titles will compete for their share of honours including the SeaShorts Award and Next New Wave Award when the event swings by Ipoh this 25 to 30 August.

Criteria for eligibility:

– Director(s) and Producer(s) must be from Southeast Asia.
– The short film submitted should be completed after 1 July 2019.
– Country of production: Southeast Asian countries (fulfilled by at least two of these: film locations, main cast, or funding)
– Film duration should not be more than 20 minutes, including credits.
– There are individual awards for specific crafts e.g. Best Cinematography, Best Performance. For your film to be eligible for these sub-categories, the person responsible for the role must be from Southeast Asia.
– Malaysian directors will be automatically eligible for the Next New Wave Award.

For full details as well as to submit your entries, visit the festival’s submission form here.

Candidates and winners are determined by an independent committee of professional judges. Among the jury for this year are Malaysian historian Dr. Farish A. Noor, Singaporean sound engineer Rennie Gomes, Philippine producer Bianca Balbuena, and Cambodian-French filmmaker Davy Chou, following in the footsteps of their predecessors such as Rithy Panh (Cambodia), Philip Cheah (Singapore) and Sharifah Amani (Malaysia).

The competition section will be complemented by a robust line-up of activities that aim to reflect the diversity, authenticity, and bold visions of emerging and established directors in Southeast Asia. In addition to screenings, the Festival every year hosts industry sessions, art experiences, experimental projects, as well as S-Express, a travelling showcase dedicated to the new wave of cinema in the region.

“SeaShorts has always been about looking at Southeast Asia – how we were in the past, what we could be in the future, and where there is room for reinvention – through the filmmaking lens,” said Tan Chui Mui, Festival Founder and Director. “And what better way to explore that than through the possibilities of short film.”

Nicholas Chee, Festival Co-Director, added, “It is an exciting time for Asian cinema. With recent successes on the global stage bringing a dramatic increase in fresh eyes and production values, the possibilities for greater exposure and storytelling are expansive. We look forward to receiving the entries and sharing them with our audiences.”

An extraordinary platform for film discovery, SeaShorts shines a spotlight on the many creative voices who call this land home, encompassing Brunei, East Timor, Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, and Malaysia. 

The SeaShorts Film Festival is the annual marquee event of the SeaShorts Film Society. The 2019 Festival saw more than 2,000 admissions come through the doors for contemporary takes on the narratives and issues pertinent to this corner of the world. Indonesian drama Ballad of Blood and Two White Buckets by Yosep Anggi Noen was presented with the SeaShorts Award while Amanda Nell Eu’s Vinegar Baths picked up the Next New Wave Award.

Full details of the 2020 programme will be unveiled in June. For more information, visit