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HAF stays closer to home

The Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum (HAF) announces its 2014 projects, including two from Filipino festival favourite Brillante Mendoza and two from 2013 winners. This year HAF`s project line up hails entirely from within Asia

, with the exception of one announced as US-Singapore. It`s a departure from recent years, which has seen projects from the UK, US and Australia selected.

Mendoza, a Cannes winner for 2009`s Kinatay, is a festival and market regular around Asia, and was one the filmmakers contributing a segment for the Hong Kong International Film Festival-commissioned Quattro 2 in 2011.

This year, Mendoza brings to HAF romantic drama The Embroiderer and Gay Messiah, one of four docos selected this year. HAF opened its doors to documentary projects in 2012.

Also returning is the Philippines’ Jun Robles Lana, with drama Our Father. Last year his Barber’s Tales won the event`s headline prize, the HAF Award. It received a timely profile boost during the market with the announcement that actor Eddie Garcia was attached to the project. The announcement was made the morning after Garcia won both Best Actor and Most Popular Actor awards at the Asian Film Awards for Lana`s previous feature Bwakaw.

Last year Taiwanese writer-director Jack Shih won the HAF/Fox Chinese Film Development Award with his script for animated feature A Happy Wish. This year he brings The Solitary Pier.

Shih`s 2013 win was not an easy one. At the HAF Award ceremony, the gong was presented to another Taiwanese project (Heart: the Cleaning Company) and HAF`s post-ceremony media release credited two other projects (Underground River and The Flying Postman) as joint winners of the award.

Having already had three bites at the cherry, HAF confirmed Shih as the actual winner two days later.

HAF presents around a dozen awards, some of which are limited to projects hailing from Hong Kong. While the awards are not incredibly valuable in financial terms by NZ standards, some include automatic entry into other project markets. For arthouse-friendly fare, one award gives entry to the Paris Cinéma International Film Festival. For genre fare, another award gives a slot at Korea`s Network of Asian Fantastic Films, part of the Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival.

This year, HAF adds the Fushan Documentary Award, which presents HK$100,000 and a development contract with mainland China company Fushan Features.

HAF runs 24-26 March, with Filmart (24-27 March) and the Hong Kong International Film Festival (24 March -7 April).

HAF Project List 2014
30 Days Of Ginger (Singapore)
Director: TEO Eng Tiong
Producer: LIM Jen Nee
Production company: Pilgrim Pictures

Angel Whispers (Hong Kong)
Director: Carrie NG, Shirley YUNG
Producer: Carrie NG, Shirley YUNG, CHAN Pang-chun
Production company: Sundream Motion Pictures

Dance Of Death (Japan)
Director: KITAGAWA Hitoshi
Producer: YUKAWA Akiko
Production company: and music ltd

Dead, End (India)
Director: Dev BENEGAL
Producer: Dev BENEGAL, Satish KAUSHIK
Production company: August Entertainment

Devil And Dust (China)
Director: LI Xiaofeng
Producer: SHEN Yang, JIA Lisha
Production company: Loyalty & Royalty Cultural Transmission

Dust (China)
Director: ZHAO Liang
Producer: PANG Yee-wah, Sylvie BLUM
Production company: Jet Tone Films

The Embroiderer (The Philippines)
Director: Brillante MENDOZA
Producer: Larry CASTILLO
Production company: Center Stage Productions (CSP)

Five Star Billionaire (Malaysia-China)
Director: Bernard CHAULY
Producer: Lina TAN, LEE Mee Fung
Production company: Red Films

Follow You (China)
Director: LIN Yu-Hsien
Producer: Stanley KWAN
Production company: Phoenix Legend Films Co

Forgive Me (China)
Director: Lina YANG
Producer: LIAO Ching-Sung, Lina YANG
Production company: Sodium Ltd

Game (Hong Kong)
Director: LAM Tze-chung
Producer: OR Wing-shuen, Ken HUI Chi-kin
Production company: One Tree Films

Gay Messiah (The Philippines)
Director: Brillante MENDOZA
Producer: Aurora CRUZ
Production company: Center Stage Productions (CSP)

Hip Hop Kabul (Afghanistan)
Director: Fazila AMIRI
Producer: Paul LEE
Production company: Kabuli Camera

The Honeygiver Among The Dogs (Bhutan)
Director: Dechen RODER
Producer: Dechen RODER
Production company: Dakinny Productions

I Miss You When I See You (Hong Kong)
Director: Simon CHUNG
Producer: Jacqueline LIU
Production company: Playhouse Limited

Instant Love (China)
Director: YANG Jin
Producer: ZHANG Jun
Production company: HI Film

Lucy And I (Singapore)
Director: Sherman ONG, Birgitte SIGMUNDSTAD
Producer: Sherman ONG, Birgitte SIGMUNDSTAD
Production company: Studio Shermano

Malegaon: Tales From The Terror Trail (India)
Director: Rakesh SHARMA
Producer: Rakesh SHARMA
Production Company: N/A

A Nail Clipper Romance (Hong Kong)
Director: Jason KWAN
Producer: PANG Ho-cheung, Subi LIANG
Production company: Making Film Productions

Our Father (The Philippines)
Director: Jun Robles LANA
Producer: Ferdinand LAPUZ, Perci INTALAN
Production company: Octobertrain Films

Private Eyes (Taiwan)
Director: CHANG Jung-Chi
Producer: CHEN Hung-Yuan, PANG Yee-Wah
Production company: Double Edge Entertainment (DEE)

The Sea (Hong Kong)
Director: Philip YUNG
Producer: CHOW Keung
Production company: Xstream Pictures

So Be It (Thailand)
Director: Kongdej JATURANRASMEE
Producer: Kongdej JATURANRASMEE, Soros SUKHUM, Auttapon NA-BANGCHANG
Production company: Song Sound Production, TrueVisions

The Trial (China)
Director: SHENG Zhimin
Producer: YANG Dong
Production company: Shenglai TV And Film Culture Company

The Wedding Terminator (Malaysia-China-Hong Kong)
Director: Stanley LAW
Producer: Jess TEONG
Production company: Three Production

HAF/Fox Chinese Film Development Award
Game Of Suspects (Hong Kong)
Director: Ben LEE Cheuk-pan
Producer: Flora GOH
Production company: Scout Pictures Limited

Love Is Speaking (China)
Director: SHU Haolun
Producer: LE Bei
Production company: Hours Film

Sisters Snake (Singapore-US)
Director: ONG Meng
Producer: ONG Meng, KUROIWA Hisami
Production company: Media Space Inc

The Solitary Pier (Taiwan)
Director: Jack SHIH
Producer: DAI Hsin-Ping
Production company: Red Alien Studio

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