Due to ongoing travel restrictions, overseas guests have been in short supply at this year's Tokyo International Film Festival. Malaysia's Edmund Yeo is a rare exception.
The filmmaker endured two-week quarantine in order to attend the world premiere of his Malu, a film which tracks a long-lasting discord between beautiful sisters, and unfolds in Malaysia and Japan. Yeo also gets to prepare for another upcoming shoot in Japan.
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Things are really normal here. Aside from the fact that everyone's wearing a mask, it feels the same.
It's very exciting. My films have never even been shown in Malaysia, due to censorship, and the fact that they were arthouse stuff. And unlike Japan, there are no arthouse cinemas in Malaysia.
After what happened to us this year, it made me want to make more films about human connections. It was really inspiring to see how Japanese directors have been doing all these Zoom films.
She kept the film more focused, emotionally. There were a lot of sub plots and side characters that were cut off. When she made those suggestions, I was like,"Oh my god, are you sure? I nearly died shooting that scene!"
He thinks like a filmmaker too. "In your previous scene, we did this, so if I do this now, are you sure it won't be tonally jarring?" He was really precise. That's how I always enjoy filmmaking: it's sort of like a jamming session, improvisational jazz. – Reuters