For the first time since its creation, in 2007, the Hong Kong Asia Film Financing Forum will open its platform to the documentary.
Among the 32 film projects which have been selected, 6 are documentaries from 10 countries (Armenia, Czech Republic, France, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Slovakia, UK, Thaland).
. Elephant Soldiers (Armenia)
Directors: Vardan HOVHANNISYAN, Inna SAHAKYAN
Producers: Yulia GRIGORYANTS, Inna SAHAKYAN
Production Company: Bars Media Documentary Film Studio
Introduction: Robinson is loudly protesting in front of an electric fence. Max and Joseph are trying to convince him to leave – his life is in danger. Mzee is negotiating with the crowd on the other side, trying to get them to leave Robinson alone. A typical scene of protest except Robinson is an elephant. Max, Mzee and Joseph have one goal – ending the war between elephants and humans in Kenya. But there is a second, bloodier front. China is developing a massive demand for ivory – there are not enough elephants in the world to satisfy it. The number of elephants being killed in Kenya is increasing dramatically. Max must become an international detective, hiding GPS chips in the tusks of murdered elephants to track them all the way to china.
. Flowing Stories 河上變村 (Hong Kong / France / UK)
Director ： TSANG Tsui-shan 曾翠珊
Producer ： Teresa KWONG 鄺珮詩
Production Company ： River Vision Production 河上風光製作
Introduction: Two streams, Pak Fa Lam and Tiu Tso Cliff, come together in Kowloon Peak to form the Ho Chung river. On its banks lies 500-year-old Ho Chung Village, whose population of over a thousand has decreased by almost half as villagers emigrate overseas. TSANG Tsui-shan is both a resident of Ho Chung Village and the director of this documentary, which ranges from Hong Kong’s New Territories to Europe, tracing the rise and fall of Ho Chung Village, from its past to its present.
. Hangman (Thailand)
Directors： Jakrawal NILTHAMRONG, Ionut PITURESCU
Producers： Patricia DRATI, Tine FISCHER, Pimpaka TOWIRA 彭柏嘉托維娜
Production Company： CPH:DOX, Extra Virgin Co., Ltd.
Introduction: Hangman is a semi-documentary hybrid film constructed around the game of Hangman. It contains six short stories about death and disaster, and is built from the memories of the last executioner in Thailand and a fortuneteller.
. Love: 1984 (Japan / Czech Republic / Slovakia)
Directors： Peter KEREKES, SODA Kazuhiro 想田和弘
Producers： Patricia DRATI, Peter KEREKES
Production Companies： CPH:DOX, Peter Kerekes Ltd.
Introduction: Decades ago, during the Cold War, many Japanese students travelled to Czechoslovakia and fell in love with locals. But, eventually, they had to go home, leaving their lovers behind. This documentary is about the relationships of Slovak/Japanese couples who successfully crossed the border and escaped, as well as couples who were torn apart and didn’t meet for several years. And, of course, it will feature retired agents of the secret police, who watched it all happen.
. Music and the Nation 音樂中國 (Hong Kong)
Director： CHEUNG King-wai 張經緯
Producers： CHEUNG King-wai 張經緯, WONG Suet-lee 黃雪莉
Production Company： Beautiful Productions Limited 秀美製作
Introduction: Music and the Nation is a documentary that follows the Chinese pipa master, FANG Jinlong, and his all-female Chinese musical group, Sweet Eighteen, as they struggle to survive in the competitive, dog-eat-dog world of the open market.
. (Un)Making the Betrayal (Indonesia / Malaysia)
Director： Dain SAID
Producer： Nandita SOLOMON
Production Company： Apparat
Introduction: On September 30, 1965 Indonesia was rocked by an attempted coup and the sudden, savage murder of six high-ranking generals. In the chaos, General Suharto took power and nearly one million Indonesians were massacred as he hunted down his political enemies. In 1983, he commissioned a propaganda film called The Betrayal to justify these mass killings, painting his opponents as witches, conspirators and monsters. (Un)Making the Betrayal is an attempt to deconstruct Suharto’s version of the “truth”.
A core event of the Entertainment Expo Hong Kong, the HAF is Asia’s premier project market designed to connect Asian filmmakers with upcoming film projects with internationally prominent film financiers, producers, bankers, distributors, buyers, and funders for co-production ventures. Past participants have included Chinese mainland’s Jia Jiang-Ke, Jiang Wen, Li Yang and Ning Hao, Hong Kong’s Stanley Kwan, Ann Hui, Gordon Chan, Pang Ho-Cheung, Taiwan’s Tsai Ming-Liang, Japan’s SABU, Nakata Hideo, Otani Kentaro, Kore-Eda Hirokazu, Miike Takashi and Yukisada Isao, Korea’s Kim Jee-woon, Park Chan-wook, E J-Yong and IM Sang- Soo as well as Thailand’s Yongyoot Tjonhkongtoon, Nonzee Nimibutr and Pen-ek Ratanaruang.
The HAF is organized by HK International Film Festival Society, and co-organized by HKTDC and MPIA. Its is supported by international partners that include CineMart, Hong Kong Film Awards, Paris Cinema, Asian Project Market, and Network of Asian Fantasic Films.
Beginning in 2007, the Hong Kong International Film Festival Society organized the inaugural Asian Film Awards (AFA) as the opening event of the highly successful Entertainment Expo Hong Kong which combines Hong Kong’s leading film and entertainment events under one roof. Filmmakers, investors and stars from Asia and around the world come to Hong Kong to witness significant film industry events, adding to the appeal of the HAF.