World’s First Happiness Film Festival Returns in 20212 min readReading Time: 2 minutes
After a sold-out inaugural run, with more than 1500 participants over four days, the annual Happiness Film Festival will be back after a hiatus in 2020 due to the pandemic. Organised in partnership with the National Youth Council, this year’s festival looks at happiness from the perspective of vulnerable groups and questions how society can better support them.
The Happiness Film Festival 2021 is spearheaded by Happiness Initiative, a Singapore-based social enterprise that aims to translate the science of happiness and well-being into actionable insights for optimal societal outcomes. Organised in partnership with the National Youth Council, the festival will be held from 19 – 28 March at Filmgarde Bugis+ in conjunction with the UN’s International Day of Happiness on 20 March.
The theme this year is “An Inclusive Journey Towards Happiness”, a topic more relevant than ever amid a pandemic that has greatly impacted vulnerable and marginalised groups.
The film festival will be centred around six themes exploring the perspectives and struggles of migrant workers, underprivileged families, neurodiverse people, ex-offenders, the elderly and youths. Each group will be represented by an international film and a local short film, followed by a dialogue with community leaders working on the ground such as Ms Lim Shaw Hui, Assistant Director of Beyond Social Services who will be sharing additional insights in the post-screening dialogue on underprivileged families.
Opening the festival is John Denver Trending, a Filipino film that centers on a poor 14-year-old high school student who is falsely accused of stealing his classmate’s iPad. Caught on video brawling with this classmate, this video turns viciously viral in the worst ways. The post-screening dialogue will touch on cyber-bullying and its effect on youths, and will include a panel discussion with representatives from Twitter and TOUCH Cyber-Wellness.
Happiness Film Festival Schedule
|Date||Time||Feature Film||Short Film||Theme|
|19 March||7:15 PM||John Denver Trending||2.0 by Dylan Tan||Youths|
|20 March||2:30 PM||Still Human||Bangla by Idette Chen||Migrant Workers|
|21 March||2:30 PM||A Man Called ove||Pigeonhole by Lim Mei Fong||Elderly|
|26 March||7:15 PM||The Specials||White Carnations by Tang Wan Xin||Neurodiverse People|
|27 March||2:30 PM||Skid Row Marathon||Take Me Away by Sun Ji||Ex-offenders|
|28 March||2:30 PM||Sorry We Missed You||Away From Ayah by Amelia Tan||Underprivileged Families|
Each screening will be accompanied by a post-screening discussion.
More information on the films and ticketing may be found at http://happinessfilmfest.asia.
Ticket costs $12 for all titles, and $9 for students and senior citizens.