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East Film Festival 2017

By Michelle Tay and Megan Chew

The East Film Festival 2017 will be held on the 21st of March, 2017. Here Michelle Tay and Megan Chew, two of the organizers, discuss the Festival, IB Film and what the art of filmmaking means to them.

Student film ‘Depot Road’ (2017)

Why do you think it is important to have the Film Festival – considering that there wasn’t one last year?

Michelle Tay: It’s easy to forget that film has a presence in this school, but East Film Festival highlights that it is a very important part of our art community. It’s important to understand that film is something that doesn’t require experience – you can just put yourself into it and try it out. I think that makes it a very accessible art form for a lot of people. In that way, it needs to be highlighted with something as big as a film festival.


How has being a film student supported you in the process of organizing East Film Festival ‘17?

Michelle Tay: I know about and understand the importance of the art form and also the challenges that come with making a film, so I wanted to have people experience that because that’s how I have grown as an individual in my 2 years of IB film. It’s just very important to have people go through the same process – you learn a surprising amount about yourself through the production process.

What helps you continue to be motivated as a film student?

Megan Chew: Film is a surprisingly difficult subject – you have to fully commit yourself to the class. It’s all about collaboration – trusting your group members, making compromises. A film cannot be made without a group of passionate individuals. I’ve always encountered obstacles throughout my processes, whether that be internal or external conflicts, but my love for the subject and for the art form have always helped me persevere. I also think it’s especially important to surround yourself with people who loves cinema to the same degree and want to see and help you succeed.

What role do you think the arts, specifically film, plays in the UWCSEA community?

Michelle Tay: When you think of the art subjects, you think of visual arts, music, and theatre – it’s stuff you can mostly print on paper. But I think film is arguably one of the most significant art subjects because it highlights the special parts of each art subject. Art is about expression and in film you use the language of the art form to express yourself through a combination of the other arts.

Student film ‘Depot Road’ (2017)

What are you most excited for as opening night comes up this coming 21st of March?

Megan Chew: I’m excited to see everyone’s work on the big screen because we have submissions from multiple grade levels. It’ll be really rewarding to see our months of effort have a tangible result and I’m really excited to see the people that also love cinema like we do; whether they are filmmakers or audience members. They are all incredibly valuable to supporting film as an art form at this school.


East Film Festival ‘17 comes up this 21st of March from 5pm to 8pm. Tickets are on sale at the school shop for $3 with free popcorn passed out on the day. See you there!

(Stills from Depot Road (2017) dir. Yohan Pillai, cin. Michelle Tay, written by Ally Benitez)

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