Four Singapore directors to helm films under iQiyi and Clover Films tie-up

(From left) Directors Melvin Mak and Ong Kuo Sin, Clover Films managing director Lim Teck, director Kelvin Tong and actor-director Tay Ping Hui. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE - Singapore distributor Clover Films announced on Monday (March 15) a collaboration with the Chinese streamer iQiyi to co-produce four movies made by home-grown directors.

This will be a landmark local foray into China - one of the largest film markets in the world.

The movies, primarily shot in Mandarin, will be helmed by directors Kelvin Tong (The Maid, 2005); film director Melvin Mak, who worked with acclaimed Hong Kong director Peter Chan on the biographical film Li Na: My Life (2020); and Ong Kuo Sin, whose latest work Number 1 landed star Mark Lee a Golden Horse nomination for best actor.

Well-known local actor Tay Ping Hui rounds out the quartet of directors tapped for the collaboration.

The four movies will be shot over two years and the first to enter production will be Ong's comedy film Reunion Dinner. Tong will direct a horror film while Mak will create a romance story. Tay will be directing a drama.

In a press statement, Tong said: "Creating content for China is an exciting journey and I am excited to be accompanied on this unique maiden trip by leading Singapore producer Clover Films as well as iQiyi, one of the largest content platforms in the world."

Tay is no stranger to iQiyi. He is acting in the upcoming The Ferryman: Legends Of Nanyang, alongside Qi Yuwu and Lawrence Wong, which is set to debut on the streaming platform later this year. His directorial debut Meeting The Giant (2014) was also a Singapore-China production.

He said: "I am a believer in the universal language of film, with a power to unite despite differences. So I hope that this collaboration will allow China audiences to have a glimpse of Singapore through the lens of our directors."

Clover Films will handle international distribution rights of the four movies while iQiyi will hande their distribution in China.

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