Seven charities will benefit from 7 Letters anthology by Singapore's best-known film-makers

Seven local film-makers (from left): Royston Tan, K. Rajagopal, Eric Khoo, Jack Neo, Boo Junfeng, Tan Pin Pin and Kelvin Tong (not in picture), will be collaborating on 7 Letters, a collection of seven short films which will showcase the life and sto
Seven local film-makers (from left): Royston Tan, K. Rajagopal, Eric Khoo, Jack Neo, Boo Junfeng, Tan Pin Pin and Kelvin Tong (not in picture), will be collaborating on 7 Letters, a collection of seven short films which will showcase the life and stories of Singaporeans. All proceeds from the three-day premiere screenings of the 7 Letters anthology of short films will be given to charity. -- PHOTO: THE NEW PAPER FILE

All proceeds from the three-day premiere screenings of the 7 Letters anthology of short films will be given to charity.

7 Letters is a compendium of seven short films made to mark Singapore's 50th birthday by acclaimed local film-makers Boo Junfeng, Eric Khoo, K. Rajagopal, Jack Neo, Tan Pin Pin, Royston Tan and Kelvin Tong.

Each short film tells a story about the lives of Singaporeans, past and present, as seen through the eyes of the individual film-makers.

Royston Tan, the spokesman for the group, said at a press conference on Tuesday morning that all seven individual works have been delivered and only the conversion to a format suitable for digital projection remains to be done.

Making the deadline was a feat that was "challenging and impossible" for everyone, but in particular for Tong, who literally had a baby to look after.

"He had to travel between Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong, trying the meet the deadline for the film, but also flying to Hong Kong to be with his wife as she was delivering their baby," Royston said. Tong and his Singaporean wife are currently based in Hong Kong.

"Kelvin is officially a father and both babies were delivered on time," Royston added

The charities to be helped by the charity premiere are the Alzheimer's Disease Association, the Children-At-Risk Empowerment Association, the Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore, the Pertapis Senior Citizens Fellowship Home, the Singapore Buddhist Lodge Welfare Foundation, the Student Care Service and Transient Workers Count Too.

The gala screening of 7 Letters will be held over three nights from July 24 to 26. It will be the first film screened at the revamped Capitol Theatre.

Royston added that tickets will not be priced. Instead, attendees will be encouraged to give a donation.

Tickets for the premiere screenings will be made available on a first-come-first-served basis to Singapore citizens and permanent residents on July 1 on the web site www.7letters.sg. Each applicant can request for up to four tickets.

"No amount is too small. Tickets with a preset price might exclude people with fewer resources," Royston said.

In addition, there will be three matinee screenings held for selected groups such as seniors, the underprivileged and fine arts students "who are the next generation of film-makers", he said.

As for whether the film will open in other halls after the premiere, a spokesman says that they are talking to distributors and information about a commercial run will be released at a later date.

The anthology is fully funded by the Singapore Film Commission, and originated from a pitch made by Royston, Khoo and Tong.

At the press conference on Tuesday, Khoo's segment, Cinema, was screened. The short is a tribute to the pioneers of the local film industry who in the 1950s and 1960s employed Chinese, Malay and Indian cast and crew and whose Malay-language films were popular all over South-east Asia.

The film honours the pontianak or she-demon horror works popular at the time, while featuring an original song written by Famie Suliman from the band The Pinholes and sung by actress Nadiah M Din. It also features a cameo by Oscar-winning French actress Juliette Binoche, shot while she was in town in December 2014 for the premiere of her film Clouds Of Sils Maria (2014).