It’s been 10 years since we we started sitting filmmakers down with our notebooks and cameras, documenting their works and individual journeys. Just to introduce ourselves, SINdie is a Singapore-based web magazine that features films and filmmakers from Southeast Asia. It started as a blog that documented the Singapore independent filmmaking scene closely and has branched out to the scene in the region, still very ‘indie’ at heart. That’s why we are called SINdie. Southeast Asia + Indie.
Over the last 10 years, we have chronicled the Singapore film scene, through our numerous interviews with filmmakers and put the spotlight on lesser-known films alongside commercial films and films from more established filmmakers. To celebrate these 10 years of our love for the local scene, we are engaging in a project and we need your help. We are creating ART--Comic Art to be exact.
A little naughty. A lot of nice… visuals. Ever seen one of those 4-panel comics that deliver pocket-sized humour? Or punchlines that perk you up on a Monday morning over breakfast?
What if we could encapsulate an entire film into a 4-panel comic?
Brevity is the soul of wit. Brevity can be hilarious too! Imagine some of Singapore’s most iconic films condensed into a snappy 4-panel comic and turned into collectible comic art? What would domestic helper Terry say to Jia Ler in Anthony Chen’s Ilo Ilo if she had only one speech bubble? How can we accommodate all the boys with noise in Jack Neo’s Ah Boys to Men into this? What if the elephant in Kirsten Tan’s Pop Aye could speak? Finally, we all agree Lulu in Michelle Chong’s Lulu The Movie talks too much, so what would a ‘redux’ version of Lulu look and sound like?
Here are the 10 iconic Singapore films we have identified for this project.
881 by Royston Tan
• 881 made getai cool in Singapore through the musical journey of the Papaya Sisters that is hilarious and tearful at the same time.
23:59 by Gilbert Chan
• Based on the true story of a certain Charlie company in the Singapore Armed Forces, this horror flick about a left-behind soldier will churn your guts.
Lulu The Movie by Michelle Chong
• Singapore’s favourite PRC karaoke hostess takes on fashion and the world. See Lulu rub shoulders with celebrities from Brad Pitt to Karl Lagerfield.
The Maid by Kelvin Tong
• Rosa, fresh off the ‘boat’ from the Philippines, arrives in Singapore to work for a family, only to discover strange happenings and skeletons in the closet.
Ah Boys to Men by Jack Neo
• Singapore’s most commercially successful film series brings all the boys to the yard and tickles your funny bones with their 101 antics.
Ilo Ilo by Anthony Chen
• Ilo Ilo won Singapore’s biggest international film award ever, the Camera d’Or, with its bittersweet tale about a little boy’s growing relationship with his domestic helper.
Mee Pok Man by Eric Khoo
• Mee Pok Man is a surprising tale about a relationship between a mee pok seller and a prostitute who was found drunk on the roadside one day. He took her home and she literally went ‘home’.
Apprentice by Boo Junfeng
• Apprentice is Boo Junfeng’s thought-provoking story about an apprentice of a prison executioner, and how he grapples with his moral dilemma to pull the lever in the execution room.
A Yellow Bird by K Rajagopal
• A Yellow Bird is a heart-wrenching film that engages in some emotional slow-burn about a newly-released prisoner who is struggling to adjust to an immensely unforgiving society and lost time.
Pop Aye by Kirsten Tan
• Pop Aye is a road trip tale about an architect who bumps into a long-lost elephant friend in the streets of Bangkok and decides to buy it and head back to where his life began, together.
A Special Collaboration with Comic Artists
To create these comics, we will be working with several artists and illustrators, from the young to the more established. Included in our potential line-up of artists is the award-winning comic artist Sonny Liew.
Sonny Liew needs no introduction in the literary and arts scene. His 2016 comic work, The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye, was the first graphic novel to win the Singapore Literature Prize and was also a New York Times and Amazon bestseller. He started his long career as a comic artist with his first contribution series Frankee and Poo for Singapore’s The New Paper in 1995. He has come a long way since and is now an award-winning comic artist and illustrator. See below for Sonny’s full biography.
Sonny will collaborate with the SINdie Team to dream up pocket versions of some of the iconic Singapore films listed here and transpose them into comic art. It is our honour to work with him and we need your support to help make this dream come true.
About Sonny Liew
A Malaysian-born comic artist/illustrator based in Singapore, Sonny Liew's ‘The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye’ was a New York Times and Amazon bestseller, and the first graphic novel to win the Singapore Literature Prize.
Graduating from Rhode Island, Sonny received his first break into the American comics industry when he was signed on for Vertigo Comics' ‘My Faith in Frankie’ together with Mike Carey and Marc Hempel. His work has appeared in the Flight Anthologies edited by Kazu Kibuishi, and he has served as editor of the Eisner-nominated Southeast Asian comics anthology ‘Liquid City’, featuring creators from Southeast Asia. In 2011, he was nominated for an Eisner award in the pencilling/inking category for his work on SLG and Disney's Wonderland, written by Tommy Kovac.
Other titles he has worked on include Marvel Comics' ‘Sense and Sensibility’ adaptation, First Second Books' ‘The Shadow Hero’ with Gene Luen Yang and DC Comics' ‘Doctor Fate’ with Paul Levitz. He is also the creator of ‘Malinky Robot’, a Xeric Award recipient in 2004 and winner of the “Prix de la Meilleure BD” (Comic Album of the Year) at the Utopiales International SF Festival in Nantes in 2009. He was a recipient of Singapore's Young Artist Award in 2010.
The finished comic art works will be on display at SINdie’s 10th Anniversary Party happening on 13th December 2018, Thursday, an invite-only event. However, the pieces will be revealed online and over social media following the launch at SINdie’s 10th Anniversary Party. The party will bring together all of SINdie’s writers over the last 10 years, as well as filmmakers, producers, programmers, writers, media and members of the film community in Singapore. As a contributor, you will also receive invites to this event (see reward tiers), where you will receive your rewards for contributing.
The finished comic artwork will be presented in the following ways:
• Marvel at these comics turned into wall art in the form of A2 Full Colour Posters (10 different sets for the 10 comics)
• Keep an irresistible collection of these comics in pocket size - Full Colour Postcards (10 different sets for the 10 comics) you can stick on your wall or send to your loved ones.
• Own a Digital Book containing all 10 comics, which you can pick out and choose to use as your screensaver or phone lockscreen at your whim.
• Strut down any street on the globe in these iconic wearable comic art – we are creating Full Colour Print T Shirts (5 different sets for 5 selected comics) that we predict will sweep the world of fashion faster than Anna Wintour can pull on a T-shirt (does she even wear them?)
Target Sum: S$3000
Payment to comic artists - S$1400
Food and drinks + launch party venue - S$800
Rewards - Cost of producing reward items - S$800
Note: Cost of for-sale merchandise to be produced from the comic designs is not included under the fundraising amount. It will be regarded as a cost separate from the scope of this fundraising exercise.
SINdie is a Singapore-based web magazine on films from this part of the world – Southeast Asia. From its start in 2008 as a grassroots-level blog on Singapore independent films and filmmakers, SINdie has grown into an online publication that chronicles the Singapore and regional film scene. Our interviews run the gamut of industry personalities in the local film scene, from Singapore International Film Festival’s Executive Director Yuni Hadi to filmmaker Eric Khoo (12 Storeys, Mee Pok Man). We charted the rise of filmmakers from their first short films to their award-winning feature films through our content on filmmakers like Boo Junfeng, Anthony Chen, Kirsten Tan and Chai Yee Wei. In 2011, we organised the first ever exhibition of Singapore film posters from over a decade of filmmaking. Thanks to the support and contributions from a team of voluntary writers, SINdie has matured into a highly-regarded journal and an online resource for anyone interested in the film industry in Singapore. Over the last few years, it has also grown its audience beyond Singapore through expanding its focus to include independent filmmaking in the Southeast Asian region.
What Others Say About SINdie
‘SINdie has been one of these web magazines that stood out and remained relevant… Its journey hasn’t been consistent, but to be able to sustain itself for 10 years with articles largely on Singapore films and filmmakers is itself a feat. Keep up with making mine and fellow Singaporean filmmakers’ journey meaningful. Congrats guys! Gerek lah, wa caya sama lu geng!’
Sanif Olek, Filmmaker and TV Director
‘Where would we be without SINdie, the chronicler of the Singapore film scene for the past 10 years. Thank you for everything. Please archive your pages!’
Tan Pin Pin, Filmmaker
‘SINdie started out as a ground up initiative and has grown to be an important part of the Singapore film community because of their consistency in documenting and reporting on Singapore cinema. They provide opportunities for young writers and have, over time, become an invaluable resource for academics and international film practitioners who need to gain perspective on the wide range of film activities and screenings Singapore has to offer. With financial support, they will be able to build the structure they need and the recruit the writing talents that can help them fulfill their full potential.’
Yuni Hadi, Executive Director, Singapore International Film Festival
‘The passion and tireless efforts of its writers are what I observe and admire very much over the years. It’s great to see the unyielding enthusiasm they have for the work we do, as they help build bridges to our audiences.’
Anthony Chen, Filmmaker
‘I have always appreciated SINdie's focus on Singaporean films and filmmakers. I wish it more success in the years to come to become an important publication in films even beyond our shores!’ K Rajagopal, Filmmaker ‘SINdie is the first and only online magazine that champions Singapore Independent Films and filmmakers, bringing us extensive reviews, interviews and the latest and most exciting news coverage related to Singapore cinema. Congratulations on your 10th Anniversary and here's to many more years of SINdie!'
David Lee, Vice President, Singapore Film Society
‘SINdie has, very doggedly and more recently with a bit of cheek, some swagger, become the go-to place - it's where Singapore cinema lives. Its lust for life on film means it swings both ways, for all cinema, art-house and mainstream and everything in between. It's become a crucial repository of Singapore cinema history, collecting behind-the-scenes reports and filmmaker interviews and legacy debates . (And pls let there be back-ups). You have become indispensable, SINdie, and deserve every boost of help back for what you do for us - Happy birthday and Viva Cinema!’
Jasmine Ng, Filmmaker
SINdie through the Decade
So.… want 10 more years of us?
Support this campaign today!
Risks and challenges
1. Depending on how much we can raise and time availability, we may not be able to collaborate with some of the comic artists, including Sonny Liew.
2. We may not be able to finish producing before December, though we have a 'reserve' list of comic artists who will take over should any of the original artists we have in mind are unable to meet the production deadline (our target is for all the comic artwork to be completed by the end of November.)
This is generally a very simple project that involves a few elements that are easy to control, with the biggest risk being meeting the deadlines.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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