Kofic, MDA sign film cooperation deal

MUMBAI: The Korean Film Council (Kofic) has signed a co-operation agreement with the Media Development Authority (MDA) of Singapore.

The co-production agreement will contribute to the development and expansion of both the Korean and Singaporean media industries, further develop cultural exchanges across national boundaries and enhance relations between the two countries.

The two parties will collaborate in the field of film production under the Korea-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (KSFTA).

The first between the two countries to cover film, it will enable Kofic and the MDA to:

exchange information on production and the creative development of feature-length films, short films, animation, documentaries, experimental films, etc;

accord the highest importance to the preservation and promotion of cultural diversity in the fields of cinema;

encourage co-productions of films for theatrical release, television broadcast, as well as VCD and DVD releases;

identify, facilitate and link potential producers to participate in co-production projects;

support the distribution of co-produced films in each others territories;

share expertise and knowledge through training or attachment programmes and masterclasses;

identify international film festivals organised in each others territories for showcasing films from both countries.

MDA chairman Dr Tan Chin said, Under the KSFTA, the MDA will work closely with Korea to establish more co-production agreements in the different media sectors to strengthen the relationship between the two, as well as harness the potential offered by our media industries. For a start, the co-production agreement sealed today will pave the way for partnerships between Singaporean film-makers and their Korean counterparts.

In recent years, Han-ryu, or the Korean Wave, has not only hit countries in Asia, but also as far-reaching as America and Europe. The exportability of Korean content and its talent underscore the vibrancy and robustness of the creative sector in Korea. The Koreans have definitely made their mark in the global media industry.

Dr Tan also noted that Singapore, likewise, has scored some successes. Although relatively nascent, its recent Singapore-made films such as Eric Khoos Be With Me, Djinns Perth and the short film G-23 by Anthony Cheng, have not only travelled the international film festival circuits but also won accolades at various international platforms.

As one of the key thrusts of Media 21, the MDA encourages cooperation between Singaporean media companies and their overseas counterparts in the various sectors in a bid to internationalise the local industry. The agreement with Kofic is certainly the start of many opportunities for exchanges in ideas and expertise between film-makers and producers of both countries in the future. This is especially timely with the growing global demand for Asian content" he adds.

Kofic chairperson An Cheong-sook said, The Republic of Korea and Singapore have enjoyed a cordial relationship for some time, however exchanges between the two countries in the realm of cinema are just beginning. KOFIC and the MDA are now entrusted with the important task of leading this commencement. With the signing of a co-operation agreement between KOFIC and the MDA, Korean and Singaporean filmmakers will be able to efficiently make use of the support programs provided by both organizations, and then to functionally proceed with co-operative business.

The KSFTA was signed in August 2005. In January 2005, the Korean Broadcasting Commission also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the MDA to co-operate in the field of broadcasting.

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