The program of the 6th CIFF is rich and diverse as always. In addition to showcasing the best films produced in and about Cambodia including many Premieres, CIFF offers this year a special focus on Japanese, Malaysian and French cinema. CIFF also proudly presents Asian Cinerama a selection of films awarded by the prestigious Asian Film Awards and rare Czech animation films, as well as world documentaries completed by a broad selection of short and animation films.
In 2015, CIFF initiated an Honorary Committee gathering together film professionals who support the development of the Cambodian film industry. Its members, originating from different backgrounds and continents, share the will to contribute to producing or promoting meaningful films in Cambodia, to see Cambodian cinema rise nationally and internationally. We have the great pleasure to introduce the Committee members and to announce that Madam Angelina Jolie, has warmly accepted the Presidency of the CIFF Honorary Committee. It is a great honor for Cambodia and an encouragement for the new generation of filmmakers.
There is much more to be said but it’s time to enjoy films, talk about films and meet filmmakers, in the best theaters of Phnom Penh.
Rithy PANH (Cambodia)
Born in Cambodia in 1964. Filmmaker, author and producer. His work has a filmmaker focuses mostly on the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime. He has directed internationally acclaimed films selected in numerous prestigious Festivals such as S21: The Khmer Rouge Death Machine or The Missing Picture, Grand Prix of Cannes: un Certain Regard which was also nominated as best foreign language film for the Oscars in 2014. Beside his career as a filmmaker, Rithy Panh is dedicated to contribute to the development of the Cambodia film industry through the creation of the Bophana Center and training as well as producing young filmmakers with his company Bophana Production. Some of them have already received international recognition.
Visal SOK (Cambodia)
Sok Visal was born in Cambodia, left in 1975 to France, and came back in 1993 to Phnom Penh. Autodidact throughout his career, Visal is creative director, events, music & film producer, and film director. In 2009, Visal founded the KlapYaHandz music label and his own film production company 391 films. Since 2013, he focuses on directing his own fiction films and produced his first feature film Gems on the run with his new company 802AD.
Nicholas SIMON (USA)
After attending Columbia University and working with director Jonathan Demme at Clineca Estetica, he traveled to Southeast Asia and established its first international-caliber production services company there. Indochina Productions has worked with Paramount Pictures for Transformers 3. He has 15 years of experience and worked hand in hand with noted directors and producers Terrance Malick, Oliver Stone, Matt Dillon and Tran Anh Hung (Scent of Green Papaya) and been awarded at international festivals including Tribeca, Berlin, Cannes, and the New York festivals.
Caylee SO (USA)
Caylee So is a writer, director, and producer at Innovision Pictures and is the Co-founder of Cambodia Town Film Festival partner of CIFF since 2013. Caylee and her family were refugees who moved to the United States in 1985. Since then, she has spent 8 years in the United States Army National Guard, earned her BA in English, and in 2012 received her MFA in Film Production at Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film and Media Arts. She has since won many prestigious awards and accolades for her work as a director.
James GERRAND (Australia)
James “Jim” Gerrand has been working as an independent documentary filmmaker for more than 40 years. While still in university, in 1967/68 Jim paddled alone by canoe down the Mekong River from war torn Laos, across Cambodia to the Vietnam border. A year later he returned to produce his first documentary, Mekong Downstream. Since then his commitment to filming and documenting every major twist and turn in Cambodia’s history has never waned. Returning to the region every year since the fall of Pol Pot in 1979, he has worked independently to produce his landmark documentaries.
Kalyanee MAM (USA)
Kalyanee Mam is an award-winning Cambodian-American filmmaker focusing on stories connected to development and its impact on people and the environment. Ms. Mam’s most recent feature documentary’ A River Changes Course’ about three Cambodian families struggling to maintain their traditional way of life as the modern world closes in around them, won several top honors including the Grand Jury Prize for World Cinema Documentary at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.