Singapore dials '881' for Oscar


SINGAPORE-- Royston Tan-helmed musical "881" will represent Singapore in the foreign-language Oscar race, the Media Development Authority of Singapore said Thursday.

Chosen by the Singapore Film Commission, "881" follows the story of the Papaya Sisters, who grow up mesmerized by the glitter and glamour of the stage and go on to become two of the top performers on the circuit.

It is the top-grossing movie in Singapore so far this year, with boxoffice of S$3.2 million ($2.1 million) since its Aug. 8 opening.

Film Commission chair Jennie Chua said the film "presents a part of the rich and colorful street culture of Singapore which is hardly seen by the world and provides a window to showcase our unique heritage to the international audience."

The film is one of four that will be screened in the new Gala Presentation section of the 12th annual Pusan International Film Festival.

This year's previous boxoffice record was Jack Neo's "Just Follow Law," which grossed S$2.77 million ($1.8 million). The all-time record is S$5.8 million ($3.9 million), reached by Jack Neo's "Money No Enough" in 1998.