First off, congratulation to the creative team in Bartle Bogle Hegarty Singapore for their win in Cannes Lions 2016. Last year the short film picks up 7 awards in the Singapore GONG Creative Awards, including Director of the Year, Gold for Direction and Bronze for Cinematography, which is a great bonus for the entire creative & production team. We've never expect the film to achieve all these and go so far.
Film making is a collaborative art form, which I always preached to younger filmmakers. It's not a one man show, or just a one man vision. In the world of indie and art house industry it's common to think that the director dictate the results of the final film. Yes, the director's input does makes the different but it's also the inputs and creative contributions from each department that shape the final film. And it's so much more true when a filmmaker makes a branded content.
I'll just bring up a few key moments/points that shape the final film. First, the cinematography which sometimes are not very valued unless you are Christopher Doyle, in this project Teck Zee who had a vast experiences in filming for various projects, from TVC, corporate videos, indie films, short films and feature films becomes valuable in achieving the natural look which sometimes we think it's easy as long as you get the best 4k cameras in the market. It's the craft and experiences of the cinematographer, not the tool that matters.
The editor, Winny Wong who miraculously put the film together and wowed us with the first cut. Yes, the first cut, there were no major changes, because the first cut she put together work so well, like what we have hope for, to be honest even as the director sometimes I won't know how the film will end up until it's put together in the editing room. You need an editor who understands story from their perspective not just only from the director.
And the other thing that was the choice of music. We face a major hurdle trying to find a suitable music for the film, because we didn't want to fall back on piano dominated music which works very well in melodramas. Janson Choo from BBH passed us a song by Lanterns On The Lake an indie band from UK, called Sapsorrow, . When I first got the music I really didn't know what to make of it, it's a very nice song, but the short film was in Mandarin and who would had thought that an indie English song would work. We layered it on to the edit and then we know we will never be able to find or compose something like this. Personally I think the music was the key component that not only give the film a life but also help to tell stories of the family that was not shown in the film.
There were also a lot of other key decision being made during the process of writing the script, casting choices and various other production matters by the team and I can't can't covered all in one posting. But you get the idea.
And lastly Doghouse 73 Pictures would like to thank BBH Singapore and NTUC Income for giving us a shot in making the film and trusting our direction and vision.
Last but not least even though it had nothing to do directly in the production of the film, thanks to all the films of the Dardene brothers.
Check out the list of winners Cannes Lions 2016 Winners