Monday, November 30, 2020

True Colors Film Festival 2020 | December 3-12, 2020


The True Colors Film Festival (TCFF) debuts online from 3 to 12 December 2020. A 10-day feast comprising about 30 award-winning full-length and short films, documentaries and dialogues from 15 countries, TCFF is the second in a series of digital events by True Colors Festival (TCF) presented by The Nippon Foundation (TNF). All the films can be streamed online for free. 

Curated around the theme “One World, One Family”, the films turn the spotlight on the universal experiences of connection, hope, dreams, struggle and transformation; and on the vision of a diverse and inclusive world.

The curatorial team is led by Singaporean film director Tan Bee Thiam, whose film Tiong Bahru Social Club premiered at the 25th Busan International Film Festival in October this year. His team comprised student curators Noor Mohamed Hakimi Bin Razmi and Ryan Choo Zong Xian from Singapore Polytechnic’s Media, Arts & Design School, where he teaches. 


Said Tan: “We hope that the carefully curated film selection will deepen our understanding of what an inclusive world can be and equip us with the vocabulary and sensitivity to discuss social issues such as disability, so that these dialogues are captured and represented well.”

International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) Features

TCFF’s launch date – 3 December – is also IDPD. In acknowledgement of the more than 1 billion people around the world with disabilities, the festival presents a selection of themed films, among them the following: 

Image may contain: 2 people, text that says "Te FF 37 SECONDS OVER THE HORIZON Yumais a comic book artist who tinkers with the idea of becoming an adult manga artist. Journey with her as she forges own path to sexual awakeningand independence discovering love and forgiveness. This film follows Alexander Zhuravleva, a blind photographer who travels armed with just 2% ofhis residual vision and smartphone. His aim? To show the world to sighted people. TRUE COLORS ESTIVAL SWIPE RIGHT"

37 Seconds (2019; Japan) is the unique tale of a comic book artist in her 20s who has cerebral palsy, and how she navigates her physical disability with wanting to achieve her independence as a manga artist as well as an individual; A Long Journey for the First Steps (2017; Slovenia) features real life experiences of Palestinian child victims of war in Gaza and their rehabilitation in Slovenia; 

Image may contain: 1 person, text that says "TO FF ELSEWHERE ALONG JOURNEY FOR THE FIRST STEPS Anotso so typical day inthelif of Simone, who ventureso his first solo trip to visit cousin in Malta, experiencing exper new adventures. Based on the real life experiences of Palestinian children and parents who arrive in Slovenia as part ofa humanitarian project It follows Amal, whose hopes are thather year old daughter Baylasan, will one day walk again like other children. RUE COLORS ESTIVAL SWIPE RIGHT"

Elsewhere (2015; Italy) gives viewers a window into the thoughts of a person with Down syndrome; Over the Horizon (2017; Russia) features a blind photographer who has traveled extensively to shoot images to show the world to sighted people; 

Image may contain: 1 person, text that says "TC FF STAND BY ME MUSIC VIDEO THESOULOF SOUL OF SOPHANNA'S SONG dancers and musicians from 15 countries/areas performan updated and rendition ofthe classic Ben E. Kinghit "Stand By Me" "-amessage of hope positivity to people everywhere at the height of the global pandemic The story of Sophanna,a Cambodian singer, composer, music and English teacher who experienced unimaginable loss and pain early on in life, who finds hope in being light SWIPE RIGHT"

the Stand by Me Music Video (2020; Singapore) features 46 artistes from 15 countries/regions who “got together” to perform a stirring rendition of the classic Ben E. King hit “Stand By Me” at the height of the global pandemic earlier this year; and The Soul of Sophanna’s Song (2017; Cambodia) tells the inspiring story of one man’s will to live and serve others despite having been orphaned at six, paralyzed at 10 and given a year to live.

Image may contain: 2 people, wedding, text that says "τΕ FILM FILMFESTIVAL TRUE COLORS FF One World, One Family ONLINE EDITION 3-12Dec Dec 2020 THE CHESS GAME OF THE WIND DIRECTED BY MOHAMMAD REZAASLANI ASLANI"

Rediscovered and restored films 

TCFF is honored to be able to offer films that have only recently been rediscovered and remastered for digital screening. These include The Chess Game of the Wind (1976; Iran), screened only twice in 1976 to a hostile audience and presumed to have been lost in the aftermath of the 1979 Iranian revolution. In 2014 the children of filmmaker Mohammed Reza Aslani discovered the film in a pile of film cans in a junk shop. Still banned in Iran, the print was smuggled out of the country by private courier to Paris, where restoration work on the film began, overseen by Martin Scorsese’s non-profit organization, The Film Foundation’s World Cinema Project, in association with the Cineteca di Bologna. The Iranian film is a gothic family tale, following the (mis)fortunes of a paraplegic heiress who is surrounded by predatory men and forms an unexpected alliance with her maid. 

Image may contain: 3 people, text that says "TC TRUE COLORS FILM FESTIVAL FF One World OneFamily Family ONLIN 3 12 Dec 2020 TRU COLORS FESTIVAL MORAL DIRECTED BY MARILOU DIAZ-ABAYA"

Another recently restored film is Moral (1982; Philippines) by Marilou Díaz-Abaya, known for her ability to spotlight the socio-political and economic issues of the Philippines through a uniquely feminist perspective. Moral was restored by ABS-CBN Corporation in 2017, in partnership with Central Digital Lab in the Philippines, as part of a digital film restoration project to digitally restore and remaster select Filipino films. Moral tells the story of four female characters, each with their own trials and all living in a patriarchal society. The issues it spotlights, including rape, abortion and sexual freedom, remain as relevant today as they were in 1982 when the film was released. 

Award-winning films not to be missed

Image may contain: 1 person, text that says "TC FF STREAMIT 5Dec, 14:00JST Dec,14:00JST APortuguese couple and parents of three, struggle to make ends meet. When a misunderstanding arises at school with their deaf daughter, the British social services grow concerned for the safety of their children. TRUE COLORS LISTEN (2020) Dir. Ana Rocha de Sousa SWIPE RIGHT"

Listen (2020; Portugal/United Kingdom), Portugal’s Oscar Entry for Best International Film and winner of seven awards at the Venice Film Festival 2020, including Best Film and Best Film in a Foreign Language. Directed by Ana Rocha De Sousa, this is a story about migrant struggles, judgments and best intentions gone wrong. 

Mental (2008; Japan/United States), winner of Best Documentary at both the Busan International Film Festival and the Dubai International Film Festival, and Official Selection: Berlin International Film Festival, is a documentary that observes the complex world of an outpatient mental health clinic in Japan, interwoven with patients, Dr Yamamoto, staff, volunteers, and home-helpers. The film breaks a major taboo against discussing mental illness and captures the candid lives of people coping with suicidal tendencies, poverty, a sense of shame, apprehension, and fear of society. 

Image may contain: one or more people, text that says "TC FF STREAM 6Dec, 14:00 JST Dec,14:00JST At this defining moment in American history, The Fight follows a scrappy team of heroic American Civil _iberties Union lawyers in an electrifying battle over abortion rights, immigrant rights, LGBTQ rights and voting rights. TRUE COLORS AL THE FIGHT (2020) Dir. Elyse Steinberg, Josh Kriegman, Eli Despres SWIPE RIGHT"

Poop on Poverty (2013; India), multi-award-winning, including Best Film, Golden Horseshoe Grand Prix 2014. Directed by Vijay S. Jodha, it highlights a challenge faced by some two billion people every day and takes a stylish dig at the oblivion of wealthy tourists. 

Darkness and Light (1999; Taiwan), multiple awards including Tokyo Grand Prix, Tokyo Film Festival 1999, Best Original Screenplay and Best Editing, Golden Horse Film Festival 1999, Best Film, Taipei Film Festival 1999. A tale of love, blindness and reality. 

Image may contain: 1 person, text that says "TC FF STREAMIT 11 Dec, 14:00JST 12Dec,14:00JST 12 JST An Iranian gothic family tale that follows the (mis)fortunes of a paraplegic heiress who's surrounded by predatory men and forms an unexpected alliance with her handmaiden TRUE COLORS AL THE CHESS GAME OF THE WIND (1976) Dir. Mohammad Reza Aslani SWIPE RIGHT"

Please visit the TCFF website or see the attached Annex for the full selection of films.

Said Audrey Perera, Executive Producer of TCF: “The idea of creating the True Colors Film Festival bubbled up while we were exploring ways to give audiences a memorable, enjoyable, touching and thought-provoking year-end gift. This ‘Year of COVID-19’ has changed life for everyone in obvious and less obvious ways. Along with strife and struggle, it’s brought a new awareness that – no matter where we are – our lives are more intertwined than we thought. Since technology allows us to experience events with others across geographies and borders, what better gift than a feast of powerful films, free for watching across most of Asia and the Pacific, at leisure over a glorious 10-day window?”

How to watch the festival 

Viewers can stream the festival online for free from 3 to 12 December. 

Feature films can be streamed via The Projector Plus, a digital streaming platform that operates from Singapore. Sign up for an account for free at Features are available to viewers in most countries in the Asia-Pacific region, while additional exclusions apply. 

Short films will be available on True Colors Film Festival on Vimeo (page goes live 3 December). Shorts can be streamed by viewers all over the world, except for viewers in China, Cuba, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Iran, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Sudan, and Syrian Arab. 

Please visit the festival Country Exclusions page for details. 


True Colors Festival 2020/21


True Colors Festival (TCF) presented by The Nippon Foundation, which has been working toward a more inclusive and diverse society in Japan and around the world for more than 50 years: TCF is a series of performing arts events presented across geographies, in celebration of diversity and inclusion as “One World One Family.”

Through festivals since 2006 in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Singapore, and Japan, TCF has presented more than 1,100 performing artists from more than 30 countries and attracted more than 40,000 people.

In June 2020, TCF released its first music video, featuring the Ben E. King classic hit, Stand By Me, performed remotely by 46 artists from 15 countries/regions, sending a message of hope and positivity to people everywhere – especially people with disabilities – during the COVID-19 lockdown. To date, it has garnered about 640,000 views across YouTube and Facebook.

In September 2020, TCF organized This is Hip-Hop! an online panel discussion to address the misconceptions about the genre of hip-hop. It garnered a live audience of about 500, who were streaming from all over the world. Watch the full replay on-demand.

The re-start of TCF 2020/2021 marks its commitment to tap the power of the arts to connect artists and audiences in experiences such as music videos, film screenings, children’s programs, musicals, concerts, and workshops.

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