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CinemAsia Film Festival 2018 announces award winners

During the festive Award & Closing Ceremony last night in cinema Kriterion in Amsterdam, three Jury Awards were given for Best Film, Best Director and Best Performer from the Competition programme of CinemAsia Film Festival 2018. Jury members Joko Anwar (director, Indonesia) Martin Koolhoven (director & screenwriter) and Vanja Kaludjercic (programmer IFFR Talks & Master Classes) evaluated eight films from seven countries and regions. A Student Jury Award and the FilmLAB Award were also handed out.

Under the signature of the new artistic director Maggie Lee, this 11th edition of the CinemAsia Film Festival showcased the upcoming generation of Asian film creatives. The public and film industry could choose from over 30 films from a great diversity of genres – together offering a kaleidoscopic view of modern Asia. This year’s Special Focus country Indonesia was represented by a wonderful selection of box office hits and more intimate treasures. The programme also featured a public Master Class with Martin Koolhoven and Joko Anwar who gave a behind-the-scenes look into their working methods. On the occasion of the International Women’s Day, and as part of CinemAsia’s LGBT programme, the Small Talkshow involved, among others, Huang Hui-chen, the director of the heart-tugging Teddy Award-winning documentary Small Talk. CinemAsia’s talent development programme FilmLAB supported eleven film talents with Dutch-Asian roots in the making of five short films. And to illustrate our ambition to become a knowledge platform and facilitator for the Dutch and Asian film industry, CinemAsia undertook its first collaboration with the Taipei Media School and IVCO – in the form of an internship programme.

Best Film – Bad Genius (Nattawut Poonpiriya)

Entertaining and highly suspenseful, this movie has surprised us with its clever and refreshing take on the heist genre. The director has demonstrated exceptional talent in filmmaking, taking us into the complex world of academia and corruption, while never ceasing to be sharp-witted and laugh-out-loud funny.The jury has decided to give the CinemAsia Best Film Award 2018 to Bad Genius directed by Nattawut Poonpiriya.

Best Director – Jang Joon-hwan (1987: When the Day Comes)

This director effortlessly juggles between many different characters and story lines, always keeping the pace up furiously. The action, the romance, the suspenseful scenes as well as the touches of comedy; it all works and blends into a compelling story about a decisive year in recent South Korean history. The jury has decided to give the CinemAsia Best Director Award 2018 to Jang Joon-hwan, the director of 1987: When the Day Comes.

Best Performer – Kaung Myat Thu (Passage of Life, Akio Fujimoto)

This year’s CinemAsia is marked by wonderful performances but one actor really stole our attention. Despite his very young age, he was able to convey a wide range of emotions with utmost conviction. His talent will surely pave a bright future for his career and we are proud to give this award to him. The CinemAsia Best Performer Award 2018 is given to the first son in the wonderful film Passage of Life, the eight year-old Kaung Myat Thu.

Student Jury Award 2018 – The Great Buddha+ (Huang Hsin-yao)

The Student Jury consisted of Sofie Keijzer, Jern Ken Chew and Jori Snels. They unanimously chose Huang Hsin-yao with the film The Great Buddha+ as Best First Time Director.
“The outstanding cinematography is rich with detail and great composition. The director’s meticulous curation of the story allows space for audience interpretation and imagination. The characters’ dark humour created a poignant image of human life. The aesthetics and style of narration consistently complement each other – in engaging and distancing the audience at the same time. The bold use of black-and-white in contrast to the colourful peeks into the life of the rich, visualizes the discrepancy between the extreme ends of society.”

FilmLAB Award 2018 – Hirofumi’s Suitcase by Natasja Pattipeilohy & Raoul Groothuizen

Director Dan Villegas (Changing Partners, Philippines) and Peixun Wang and Catherine Huang from the Taipei Media School formed the FilmLAB jury and chose Hirofumi’s Suitcase by Natasja Pattipeilohy and Raoul Groothuizen as the best of the five short films produced for the 2018 edition of FilmLAB.

On April 28 Kriterion will programme The Best Of CinemAsia 2018 and on May 5 and 6 KINO Rotterdam will programme CinemAsia On Tour. All films mentioned above will be featured as well as the film who will win the Audience Award, which is not public at the moment this press release is send out.

Winner Audience Award 2018 – A Taxi Driver by  JANG Hoon

70% of the votes rewarded the South Korean A TAXI DRIVER from Jang Hoon with 5 stars. A TAXI DRIVER won the CinemAsia Audience Award 2018 with 4.65 stars convincingly.

Winner Audience Documentary Award 2018 – Small Talk by HUANG Hui-chen

The Taiwanese SMALL TALK from Huang Hui-chen is the winner of the Audience Documentary Award 2018. SMALL TALK was also the winner of the Teddy Award at the Berlin Film Festival.