Veteran actress Hồng Ánh judges AIFFE Film Festival

August 02, 2023 - 09:07
Vietnamese actress and director Hồng Ánh is a juror at the 6th ASEAN International Films Festival (AIFFA) in Sarawak, Malaysia from August 2 to 4.
A still from Memento Mori: Earth by Marcus Mạnh Cường Vũ. — Photo

HÀ NỘI — Vietnamese actress and director Hồng Ánh is a juror at the 6th ASEAN International Films Festival (AIFFA) in Sarawak, Malaysia from August 2 to 4.

Others in the jury panel include Malaysians U-Wei Bin Haji Saari and Effendee Mazlan; Turkish Ihsan Nurullah Kabil and Indonesian Viva Westi.

AIFFA was established in 2013 for ASEAN directors, cinematographers, actors and fans to converge to celebrate excellent movies from the region.

“I’m honoured to be one of the judges at AIFFA 2023,” said Ánh.

Actress and director Hồng Ánh (first left) and her actors at AIFFA 2017. — Photo Blue Productions

“It is my return. Kuching Island is an amazing place where I directed my first movie Đảo Của Dân Ngụ Cư (The Way Station) which was recognised by international cinema experts.

“Emotionally, I am both eager and nervous because two Vietnamese movies participating at the festival are made by directors who I respect deeply.”

Born in 1977 in Trà Vinh Province, Ánh began her career as a dancer when she was 14. In 1995, she turned to film after winning a top prize at the Movie Actors with Potential Contest launched by HCM City’s Cinematography Association.

She has performed in dozens of award-winning films and TV shows produced by State-owned and private film companies, including Việt Nam Film Studios and HCM City Television’s Film Studio.

Ánh won two Best Actress awards at the Golden Kite Festival and Việt Nam Film Festival in 2001 and 2008, launched by the Việt Nam Cinematography Department and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

In 2013, she began working as a film director and producer after opening the Blue Productions film agency.

The Way Station tells the stories of residents living in a small Vietnamese fishing village, focusing on their inner life. It won Best Film at AIFFA 2017.

Ánh and her producer were chosen over four competitors from the Philippines and Indonesia. The film also won Best Leading Actor and Best Director of Photography.

At the festival, Ánh and the jury will judge 34 movies from Việt Nam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, Brunei and the Phillippines.

Two Vietnamese movies Memento Mori: Đất (Memento Mori: Earth) and Đêm Tối Rực Rỡ (The Brilliant Darkness) will vie for the AIFFA Awards.

Scripted and directed by Marcus Mạnh Cường Vũ, Memento Mori: Đất was inspired by true stories from the book Điểm Đến Của Cuộc Đời (Destination of Life) by Đặng Hoàng Giang.

The movie tells of a young dying mother as she tries to record farewell messages for her daughters and fights for an organ donation. The 85-minute movie will be shown on August 3 with English subtitles.

Memento Mori: Đất has been nominated for the New Current Award at Busan International Film Festival and Best Film at BaliMakarya International Film Festival.

Đêm Tối Rực Rỡ is a movie by American Aaron Toronto who won awards at the Golden Kite Awards 2022 given by the Việt Nam Cinema Association including Best Feature Film and Best Cinematography, Best Leading Actress, Best Screen and Best Supporting Actor.

The movie brought home the best story and best female performance awards at the 2022 Santa Fe Film Festival in New Mexico, the US.

It focuses on domestic abuse telling of the funeral of a grandfather whose family members believe they have been left a fortune. His children soon discover that their father lost a fortune gambling and the mafia is coming to collect the debt. They must pay by sunrise or else there will be another funeral.

The movie will be shown on August 4. — VNS