EXCLUSIVE: Thai sales company Mosquito Films Distribution has picked up Singaporean filmmaker Liao Jiekai’s sophomore feature As You Were.
The film premiered in Tokyo International Film Festival’s Asian Future competition in October and screened to a full house at the Singapore International Film Festival this week.
This follows the Thai outfit’s picking up two Malaysian films – previous Cannes director Woo Ming Jin’s The Second Life Of Thieves, which premiered in Busan, and his oft-times producer Edmund Yeo’s feature directorial debut River Of Exploding Durians, which was in Tokyo’s main competition.
As You Were was also in international competition in Torino and Nantes.
Set on an idyllic island south of Singapore, the film follows a couple spending their last moments together as their relationship falls apart, exploring their memories and the oppressive past of St. John’s Island, which was, at various points in history, a quarantine center, a penal colony and a drug rehabilitation centre.
An award-winning filmmaker and video installation artist, Liao’s debut feature Red Dragonflies won the special jury prize at the Jeonju International Film Festival and was in competition at multiple fests including Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo. He is also a founding member of Singapore-based film collective 13 Little Pictures.
“We have been admirers of the films produced by 13 Little Pictures. In many ways, Mosquito and 13 Little Pictures have a lot in common, in terms of our DIY attitude to filmmaking. We are glad to finally get the chance to collaborate with them on Liao Jiekai’s latest film, As You Were, which we all have been very impressed with. It is a delicate film, beautifully rendered through poetic visual language and mise-en-scene. We are happy and proud to be representing this little gem from Singapore,” said Anocha Mai Suwichakornpong, one of the partners at Mosquito Films.
Liao said, “I am happy and honored that my second film can be part of the Mosquito Films family. I’ve always been a great admirer of the Thai filmmakers from Mosquito Films and the independent spirit they represent. I hope this opportunity will open doors for future collaborations.”
Mosquito Films Distribution was founded by leading Thai independent filmmakers Suwichakornpong, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Pimpaka Towira, Aditya Assarat, Soros Sukhum and Lee Chatametikool.