Singapore

Eric Khoo

Eric Khoo was born in 1965 and is an award-winning filmmaker who has also received the Cultural Medallion for Film in 2007, the highest honour for individuals who have achieved excellence in the fields of literary arts, performing arts, visual arts and film, and contributed to Singapore’s cultural environment. Khoo helms Zhao Wei Films and has been credited for reviving the Singapore film industry and for putting Singapore onto the International film map in the mid-1990s with movies like Mee Pok Man (1995) and 12 Storeys (1997). He was the first Singaporean to have his films invited to major film festivals such as Toronto, Busan, Berlin, Telluride, Venice and Cannes. Khoo has also produced several award-winning films including 15: The Movie (2003) and Apprentice (2016).

His film Be With Me (2005) opened the Directors Fortnight in Cannes and his next feature My Magic (2008), his fourth feature, screened in competition at the Cannes Film Festival. He released his first animated feature, Tatsumi, in 2011 and played at the 64th Cannes Film Festival in the Un Certain Regard section. The film won awards at Tokyo and Dubai film festivals and was an APSA nominee for Best Animated Feature Film.

In 2012 Khoo headed the juries at Asian Film Awards, Rotterdam International Film Festival and in 2013 the Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival. He was invited to be on the official Cannes short film competition jury in 2017. In 2019, he served as International Jury President for the Asia Pacific Screen Awards.

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United Kingdom

Mike Downey

Mike Downey is a film producer, author, journalist, theatre director and activist who founded the UK-based independent production house Film and Music Entertainment (F&ME) in 2000. To date, the company has production credits on over 60 feature films. He was educated across France while also teaching before spending most of the 1980s as a theatre director and producer in France, Germany, the former Yugoslavia and the UK. In the ‘90s he co-founded and published the Moving Pictures International group of media publications. He has worked with revered international filmmakers including Peter Greenaway, Julien Temple, Pawel Pawlikowski, Stephen Daldry and many more across Europe, South America, Africa and India. He has written extensively on the art of film production, notably The Film Finance Handbook, as well as working as Deputy Chairman of the European Film Academy and on the BAFTA Council.

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Paolo Bertolin is a festival programmer, film writer and producer. He worked as the Venice Film Festival’s international consultant for South and South East Asia, Oceania and Turkey. He has also worked for Rotterdam, Locarno and Doha Film Institute festivals and in 2019 was announced as the head of the Director’s Fortnight of the Cannes Film Festival. As a producer, Bertolin has worked on films like Dang Di Phan Vietnam-made Big Father, Small Father and Other Stories (2015), which screened in competition at the Berlin International Film Festival, and Lav Diaz’s epic eight-hour black-and-white drama A Lullaby to the Sorrowful Mystery (2016), which also screened in competition at Berlin and won that festival’s Alfred Bauer Award for “a feature film that opens new perspectives.” He has remained an advocate for Asia Pacific cinema reporting from film festivals around the world for international publications.

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Australia

Greer Simpkin

Greer Simpkin is a film and television producer, having worked for the ABC in Australia and Channel 4 in the UK before working with the Australian production company Bunya Productions. Greer has produced a number of critically acclaimed Australian films that have screened at prestigious film festivals around the world including Venice. She has notably worked with many indigenous Australian filmmakers including Ivan Sen’s Goldstone (2016) starring APSA-nominated actor Aaron Pedersen and Jacki Weaver, Rachel Perkins’ APSA-nominated Jasper Jones (2017) starring Toni Collette, and Warwick Thornton’s Sweet Country (2017), for which she won an APSA for Best Feature Film. She has worked extensively in television on projects including The Code, Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries and Blue Water Empire set in the Torres Strait. She has also worked in Virtual Reality and documentary. In 2018 she also won two AACTA Awards for Best Film and Best Television Drama Series (for Sweet Country and Mystery Road respectively).

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Republic of Korea

Oh Jung-mi

Oh Jung-mi majored in Russian and English literature at Yonsei University, and completed a Master’s degree on Russian Literature. Her translation works include Vladimir Nabokov’s Speak, Memory, and and Mikhail Lermontov’s A Hero of Our Time. Following her career in writing short TV dramas and having stage experience, she studied film at Korea National University of Arts. Burning is Oh Jung-mi’s debut as a feature screenwriter following the success of her short film Mr Cowper. After studying under Lee Chang-dong, Oh and Lee collaborated on a number of as-yet unproduced screenplays before stumbling upon the Haruki Murakami short story Barn Burning, and adapting it into a feature length film.

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