Curtain falls on 4th Brunei Film Blitz

Hakim Hayat

The 4th Brunei Film Blitz closed last weekend with a Gala Awards ceremony for local filmmakers participating in competitive categories.

The 2020 winners were Ejen Kriminal by Iqbal Masmin and Hanis Hashim (Jury Award), MAN by Aqil Faiz (Open Category), Diari Seorang Guru by Akmal Marhain (Islamic Category) and I Love You by Aqil Faiz (96 Hour Challenge).

This year, there were 20 submissions in the competition out of the 28 registrations, the largest participation for the Blitz since its inception.

The films were shortlisted by the Brunei Film Blitz 2020 jury panel – Dean of the Mahakarya Institute of the Arts Asia Dr Alex Fischer, Indonesian producer Sheila Timothy and award-winning Philippine cinematographer Rain Yamson II, LPS – all of whom are established filmmakers in their fields.

Festival Director Siti Kamaluddin remarked that there has been a vast improvement in the quality of submissions.

Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali bin Apong in a group photo during the awards ceremony. PHOTO: HAKIM HAYAT

Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali bin Apong presented the prizes to the winners.

Festival Programmer Dr Fischer noted that “it is extremely difficult to judge and rank ideas, but we, as a jury, concentrated on films that were complete packages. That is, they were cinematic, entertaining, considered and technically proficient”.

Aqil Faiz said, “This is my fourth time participating in the festival and, Alhamdulillah, this is my first award from the Brunei Film Blitz.

“The training, screenings and exposure to world cinema have made me understand storytelling, visuals, sound and the many different departments in the filmmaking process.

“I will continue to make films and keep sharing my stories.”