My Student Film: Things That We Recalled... / by next new wave

Jacky, the programmer of the programme My Student Film, spoke to the five established filmmakers to ask what they recalled when they were making their student films.

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At that time students did not have enough money to buy 8mm raw materials, so we bought the cheap material illegally from someone who worked at National TV station. Shooting on a train was also without permission, we did it stealthily.

-Garin Nugroho (Indonesia) 
The director of Wagon 1.2,3 / Gerbong 1,2,3


Seng Tat: 'This animation is the final year project of my animation course at Multimedia University. It was a group project done together with my 3 other classmates; Jun Wei, Terence, and Eddie. I’ve not seen them for a long long time. Hope they are still alive and well.'

Chui Mui: 'This animation did not finish rendering. And it is edited from playblast video. That's because the rendering crashed whenever Seng Tat goes near the computer. Seng Tat was a curse. We don't let him go near the Rendering machine' 

Seng Tat: 'That's not true. The entire animation was rendered. Only 1 shot was a playblast shot.'

Chui Mui: 'I See. Maybe I remember wrongly.

-Liew Seng Tat (Malaysia)
The director of Don't Play Play 


I started film school really early. 17 in fact. I shot 'G-23' when I was 19 as part of my graduation film at Ngee Ann Polytechnic's School of Film and Media Studies. We shot it on 16mm. I really do miss shooting on film. At that time, there wasn't even video assist available at the school. So there was no video monitor to look at what one was shooting and no way of playing back takes. It was pure trust and instinct of what you are capturing right before your eyes. I almost feel some of that discipline gets thrown out the window with the digitalisation of the medium. Now we get so used to watching 'playback' so much.

-Anthony Chen (Singapore)
The director of G23


I had a tutor who hated me and I think he was responsible for this event; I went out for coffee, and when I came back at the premiere my friends told me that a group of dark-suited Indonesian men in a black Mercedes, came out and started shouting and haranguing the screen where the trailer of 'Surabaya Johnny' was playing. A few years ago when the 'Act Of Killing' was made his name was in the credits as one of the producers.

-Dain Said (Malaysia)
The director of Surabaya Johny

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It's a Film when I was a sophomore at the university and was done as a class exercise. It was shown in Rotterdam almost (if my memory did not deny it) with an end credits saying 'Sorry Quark (name of teacher), for submitting late!'

-Sherad Anthony Sanchez (The Philippines)
The director of Apple

As an amateur filmmaker, these words struck Jacky with a thought: 'I am what they were. 20 years ago.'