India's Shyam Benegal to Head Six-Member Asia Pacific Screen Awards Jury

The international jury for the seventh annual awards will also include European Film Academy member Christoph Schaub and Hong Kong producer Albert Lee.

SYDNEY -- Swiss writer-director Christoph Schaub is joining the jury of the Asia Pacific Screen Awards (APSAs) as a representative of the European Film Academy, which is forging closer links with the Brisbane-based APSA and its own Academy.

The six-member jury was announced at an Australian Embassy event this week at the Busan International Film Festival.

The seventh annual APSA Awards Jury will be overseen by Indian writer-director Shyam Benegal, with other jury members to include Korean screenwriter and director Kim Tae-yong, the “Queen of Sri Lankan Cinema” actress Malini Fonseka, Turkish actor Tamer Levent and Hong Kong producer Albert Lee.

“As India celebrates 100 years of cinema, it is fitting that the International Jury be led by a filmmaker of such gravitas as Shyam Benegal. The important task of determining the winners of the region’s highest accolade in film is being undertaken by a truly remarkable group of eminent filmmakers,” APSA executive chairman Michael Hawkins said.

“Brisbane’s Lord Mayor Graham Quirk is thrilled that Mr Benegal accepted our invitation, and looks forward to welcoming him and his fellow jurors to Brisbane.”

The City of Brisbane, through its economic development board, Brisbane Marketing, has taken over management of the APSAs from state-based body Queensland Events, and continues to collaborate on the awards with Paris-based UNESCO and the International Federation of Film Producers Associations (FIAPF).

The APSA Academy in conjunction with the Motion Picture Association (MPA) also runs the MPA APSA Academy Film Fund. Four $25,000 grants will be awarded to projects to further their stories from treatment stage to final script.

Over seven years, the APSAs have built a reputation as the region’s pre-eminent film awards recognizing and promoting the cinematic excellence and cultural diversity of the world’s fastest-growing film region, comprising 70 countries and areas -- 4.5 billion people -- and responsible for half of the world’s film output.

The seventh APSA Awards will be held Dec. 12 in Brisbane, Australia.