Joining the jury panel for the upcoming AIFFA 2023 are esteemed industry professionals, including U-Wei Bin Haji Saari and Effendee Mazlan from Malaysia, Ihsan Nurullah Kabil from Turkey, and Viva Westi from Indonesia.

AIFFA, established in 2013, serves as a platform for ASEAN directors, cinematographers, actors, and fans to come together and celebrate outstanding movies from the region.

Anh, a renowned Vietnamese actress and filmmaker, expresses her gratitude and excitement as she joins the esteemed panel of judges at AIFFA 2023.

Returning to Kuching Island, a place where she directed her first movie “Đảo Của Dân Ngụ Cư” (The Way Station), holds deep emotional significance for Anh. The film was well-received and recognized by international cinema experts.

“I feel a mix of eagerness and nervousness because two Vietnamese movies participating in the festival are helmed by directors whom I deeply respect,” says Anh.

Born in 1977 in Tra Vinh Province, Anh initially pursued a career in dancing at the age of 14. She transitioned to filmmaking in 1995 after winning a top prize at the Movie Actors with Potential Contest organized by HCM City’s Cinematography Association.

Anh has appeared in numerous critically acclaimed films and TV shows produced by both State-owned and private film companies, including Vietnam Film Studios and HCM City Television’s Film Studio.

Her exceptional talent and performances have earned her two Best Actress awards at the Golden Kite Festival and Vietnam Film Festival in 2001 and 2008, hosted by the Vietnam Cinematography Department and the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism.

In 2013, she ventured into film directing and producing after establishing the Blue Productions film agency.

The Way Station, which explores the lives of residents in a small Vietnamese fishing village, with a focus on their inner struggles, won the Best Film award at AIFFA 2017. Anh, along with her producer, triumphed over four competitors from the Philippines and Indonesia. The film also secured the Best Leading Actor and Best Director of Photography accolades.

During the festival, Anh and the jury will evaluate 34 movies from Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, Brunei, and the Philippines.

Two Vietnamese movies, “Memento Mori: Đất” and “Đêm Tối Rực Rỡ”, will be contending for the prestigious AIFFA Awards.

Scripted and directed by Marcus Mạnh Cường Vũ, “Memento Mori: Đất” draws inspiration from true stories featured in the book “Điểm Đến Của Cuộc Đời” (Destination of Life) by Dang Hoang Giang. The movie revolves around a young terminally ill mother’s attempt to record farewell messages for her daughters and her fight for an organ donation. The 85-minute film, with English subtitles, will be screened on August 3.

“Memento Mori: Đất” has received nominations for the New Current Award at the Busan International Film Festival and Best Film at the BaliMakarya International Film Festival.

“Đêm Tối Rực Rỡ” is an American movie directed by Aaron Toronto, which garnered awards at the Golden Kite Awards 2022 presented by the Việt Nam Cinema Association, including Best Feature Film, Best Cinematography, Best Leading Actress, Best Screen, and Best Supporting Actor. The film also won the best story and best female performance awards at the 2022 Santa Fe Film Festival in New Mexico, USA. The film delves into the theme of domestic abuse through the lens of a funeral for a grandfather, where the family is left with a sizable debt from their father’s gambling addiction and must pay the mafia by sunrise or face dire consequences. The film will be screened on August 4.