I was chatting with a friend based in the US the other day, about the state of Singapore film and how Royston Tan got blacklisted by the Government and his funding cut, because of his film "15" and the lagi controversial short film "Cut".
Then I came across this commentary that eloquently argues why film is important to Singapore, and why nurturing our talents in this area is important (yes, even when these talents are not toeing some Government line).
Commentary: Why cinema is important to Singapore, and its current status
by Juan Foo, an independent producer.
I will always remember this little vignette retold to me, by my once filmmaker friend. She was studying film in a prestigious New York film school and her schoolmate asked in passing her why is she studying film. She eagerly replied she wanted to make films in her own country, Singapore. This was met with some jeer from him, as he candidly mocked that Singapore has no film industry to speak of.
Singapore is climbing a mild gradient since then. A cinema industry, per se, we are not, but we have a growing presence of a tight community that is involved making films. We are forever crossing junctions and making decisions on how the cinematic road should be paved. A crossroad is met at every turn. A decision is made in anticipation that it would, in the long run, pay off.