Oscars: Singapore Selects 'Pop Aye' for Foreign-Language Category

Pop Aye - Still 2 - H 2017
Courtesy of Sundance

Pop Aye - Still 2 - H 2017

The tender Thai-set drama premiered at Sundance, where it won the special jury award for screenwriting.

Singapore has picked Kirsten Tan’s debut feature Pop Aye to represent the country at the 2018 Oscars in the best foreign-language film category.

A tender but mysterious drama, Pop Aye debuted at the Sundance Film Festival, where it won the World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award for screenwriting.

Set entirely in Thailand, the film stars Thaneth Warakulnukroh as a down-and-out architect who is reunited with his childhood elephant and embarks on a road trip across the Thai countryside in search of their old home.

"Loneliness, alienation, the ache of nostalgia and the everyday absurdity of life infuse every encounter in the unconventional road trip, wrote THR critic Sheri Linden in her review of the film, calling it "an assured and noteworthy feature debut."

“The entire team behind Pop Aye is thrilled with the selection," said executive producer Anthony Chen. "We hope Kirsten’s lovely debut film will charm the Academy as much as it has charmed audiences all over since its premiere at Sundance."

Pop Aye can next be seen at the upcoming Zurich Film Festival, BFI London Film Festival, Busan International Film Festival and Tokyo International Film Festival. 

"We are proud to submit it for the Best Foreign Language Film category at the Academy Awards 2018, and hope that more audiences will get acquainted with quality works by Singaporean filmmakers," added Joachim Ng, director of the Singapore Film Commission.

Pop Aye is selling internationally from Cercamon World Sales.