THE NEXT BIG CINEMATOGRAPHER: RACHEL LIEW
Rachel Liew doesn’t take the conventional route. For starters, while most student films are typically based in Singapore, Liew, 25, based her final-year project Han in South Korea because “it felt solemn, yet has a little sense of hope to it”.
The 20-minute short (Liew served as cinematographer and her classmate Jonathan Choo as director) centres around a Singaporean father who travels to South Korea to make amends to a family whose daughter is killed in a car accident by his son. While their budget ballooned (they raised $4,000 on Indiegogo; the other $36,000 required was pooled together from the crew members’ own savings), the money was well-spent – Han clinched the highest prize in the student category, the Laszlo Kovacs Student Award – Golden Tadpole, at the illustrious Poland-based Camerimage festival. It also won Best Direction and DBS Best Picture awards at the 2016 National Youth Film Awards. Her style of work “I tend to steer more towards a static slow-moving frame, rather than energetic handheld movements.” On what she hopes to bring to the local scene “Hopefully a female voice, which I feel is still somewhat lacking in the industry.” Who inspires her “Vittorio Storaro was the first person that got me thinking about cinematography, and how it encompasses light, music and literature.” Recent projects April saw the release of the music video (helmed by her and Choo) for Light Breaks In by singer-songwriter Charlie Lim. “I’m also awaiting replies for a master’s course at the American Film Institute, and National Film and Television School.”
Liew's final-year project, han(2015), was set in south koerea, with the role played by veteran Mediacorp actor Zhu Houren(above and right). who is also the father of hans director, jonathan choo