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about Royston Tan

Director & Film-Maker.
Location: Central, Singapore.
Birthdate: October 5th.

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881 A Royston Tan Film

The bad boy of Singapore cinema is back, with his biggest film project yet, a $1million musical feature film in a joint production between five companies. The talented Singapore director's next film will be set against the colourful and culturally unique backdrop of Chinese 7th month 'getai'. 

Singapore, 7 February 2007 – Zhao Wei Films, MediaCorp Raintree Pictures, Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA), Scorpio East Pictures and Infinite Frameworks (IFW) are proud to announce that they will be collaborating to produce talented Singapore director, Royston Tan's next feature film, 881.

881 tells the story of The Papaya Sisters, played by Mindee Ong (Moulmein High, Birthday) and Yeo Yann Yann (Singapore Dreaming), two childhood friends who grew up mesmerised by the glitter and glamour of 'getai' (song stage). The musical will feature glitzy costumes and lavish choreography, with the actors breaking out often into songs to express their emotions. All the numbers in the film are from the treasure trove of the late Chen Jin Lang, a Singapore 'getai' songwriting legend who passed away in August 2006. MediaCorp artiste Qi Yu Wu (The Peak) and 'getai' veteran Liu Ling Ling will also star in the film.

The director, Mr Royston Tan, comments "881 is my third film and as a director, I have always wanted to surprise people with different ways of storytelling. 881 will be Singapore's first musical film and I hope to bring out the beauty of Hokkien songs and 'getai' through this brand new interpretation. The film will infuse 'getai' elements with modern cutting edge editing style, and let audiences see 'getai' in a different light". 

The five partners will co-invest in the film, budgeted at around S$1 million, with Eric Khoo's Zhao Wei Films and MediaCorp Raintree Pictures serving as producers. Infinite Frameworks will provide post-production support, including visual effects and design. To be shot on High Definition (HD), the film will be in Mandarin and Hokkien. Production is expected to commence in early March and will be co-distributed by Scorpio East Pictures and Golden Village Pictures in Singapore in the 3rd quarter of 2007 when completed.

Mr Eric Khoo, Director of Zhao Wei Films, comments "I have been a great admirer of Royston's short musical films and it brings me much joy that he is finally making a full length song and dance number, 881!".

"MediaCorp Raintree Pictures has been working with local directors long before we started on our collaborations with regional filmmakers. We have worked with Eric, Jack, and Kelvin among others. Recently we have also started to work with first time directors for regional co-productions. I have always wanted to work with Royston. With this project, we are not only working with Royston for the first time; it is also our first venture into a musical. Besides this genre which is challenging in every aspect of filmmaking, the subject matter is very close to my heart. I hope we can add value to bringing Royston and his movie to a wider audience both within Singapore and to the key global markets. It is also a pleasure to work with Eric Khoo and his team again and we are very happy to have the support of the MDA" says Mr Daniel Yun, Managing Director of MediaCorp Raintree Pictures.

Mr Man Shu Sum, Director of Broadcast and Film Development, MDA, comments "Our collaboration with Zhao Wei Films, MediaCorp Raintree Pictures, Scorpio East Pictures and Infinite Frameworks on this significant project is an important step for our local film industry. We are proud to support this film not only because of its unique storyline, but because it celebrates Singapore's identity and promotes local talent. We are delighted to be a part of Singapore's first musical feature film and we believe its story has a wide appeal with potential to garner attention from local and international audiences".

"Scorpio East Pictures is proud to invest – not just in Royston Tan, Singapore's own critically-acclaimed, young and very talented director – but also in Singapore's local film production scene. 881 brings together the best and most experienced from the industry, including award-winning veteran Eric Khoo (Zhao Wei Films) and pioneering movie-maker, MediaCorp Raintree Pictures. With them behind this project, Scorpio East Pictures have full confidence that 881 is going to be yet another winner" says Mr John Ho, Chief Executive Officer of Scorpio East Pictures.

Mr Freddie Yeo, General Manager of IFW, comments "Infinite Frameworks (IFW) is proud to once again have the opportunity to collaborate with Zhao Wei Films, MediaCorp Raintree Pictures, the MDA, and new partner Scorpio East Pictures for the production of Royston Tan's 881. Shooting on HD format will allow IFW greater flexibility to produce stunning visuals that is synonymous with the glitter and glamour of a 'getai' and we look forward to crafting a visual treat for the audience".

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  • Blogger デス sleepy K. says so:
    11/2/07 14:44  

    thanks for the update!!
    looking forward to the papayao!! top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    11/2/07 23:34  

    I'm not a fan of musical feature films but this one sounds interesting... anyway can always trust Royston to spring a surprise!

    Kudos for casting the two relatively unknown female leads. I know little of Mindee but Yann Yann was superb in Spore Dreaming.

    One thing though... do our getai singers really wear that kind of flashy headgear? top

  • Blogger mo says so:
    12/2/07 01:29  

    say, just how much color goes before busting the frame hd or not?
    yes royston, do it! liven it up high and glitz for the dead amongst the living, for they are legion out there...
    i can't wait (but will do so anyway)!
    and what's the title mean exactely? top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    12/2/07 03:54  

    Trust me, I have seen even more bizarre ones! ha top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    21/2/07 11:08  

    8-8-1? Hahhahahaha. Now the world waits in anticipation!!!
    -jerry (sg) top

  • Blogger lala says so:
    21/2/07 17:41  

    Actually, some TJC classes have watched 15 during GP. (the CUT version =p)

    U have an awesome affinity for the 'song and dance' aspect of film, it rly enriches the plot!

    I feel tat the kitschy sense of humor and unexpected approach is wad makes ur works outstanding.

    Pls keep it up,
    JY, Royston Tan fan since her Chung Cheng (Main) days. top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    24/2/07 22:09  

    I hope this movie has a strong storyline amidst the characters breaking into song and dance.
    Good luck! top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    19/3/07 20:41  

    good choice in using a talented actress like Yeo Yann Yann! top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    25/3/07 10:58  

    Looks like a film musical with a predictable plot. Any reason to watch this film besides yann yann? top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    1/4/07 21:28  

    Looking 4ward to ur Latest Movie...881!!!Seen The intro reel,Really very touching...Can really Relate it with Royston's Best Production...and Music suits Super-well... top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    6/4/07 13:51  

    royston tan rocks.
    it will be better if you can actually go back to your secondary school's to advertise. ((: top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    15/4/07 02:01  

    Hey Roy, U look gorgeous in that hair style. keep the fringe there. i mean it. princess z. top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    3/5/07 21:13  

    I find the intro showreel very well done!! top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    7/5/07 14:56  

    Royston's films look like commmercials, geez top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    8/8/07 14:36  

    I am waiting to catch the show but already I have a good feeling about it. Esp. the choice of using veteran Liu Ling Ling. Her style adds to how geita is like. way to go.. top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    10/8/07 23:32  

    881 is a fantastic piece of Royston ! It really brings laughter and tears to me during the whole movie. I really salute Royston for such a great show and definitely a great talent to Singapore film industry! top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    12/8/07 01:37  

    I love 881! :) Thanks! I really enjoyed watching it! top

  • Blogger CPMan says so:
    12/8/07 21:31  

    I watch Getai 881 last nite with my wife and we never laugh so hard nor felt so sentimental. Great work........ top

  • Blogger CPMan says so:
    12/8/07 21:32  

    I watch Getai 881 last nite with my wife. We never laugh so hard nor felt so sentimental. Great work. top

  • Blogger Jmin says so:
    13/8/07 00:19  

    hi where can i get the songs??? top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    16/8/07 19:52  

    Hii..im interested in knowing where to get the songs too!
    any idea?? top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    21/8/07 19:16  

    Wah the show is super lian. Make you laugh like crazy and make you want to cry also, especially about the song about going to SGH and the lotus chapter 1, 2, 3.

    Watched the 1.45 show at Bishan. Many ah ng and ah soh. It will be very interesting if only they can blog here also! top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    13/9/07 09:43  

    It was quite an eye opener when I read that 881 which cost S$1 million to make and drawing S$2.9 million (at the last count) is still in the red. The article highlighted the plight faced by the local film industry. Wow, it takes a lot of courage to make a local movie. Thank you to Royston for giving us such a wonderfully entertaining movie and reviving our interest in getai. I will continue to tell my friends and relatives to watch 881. Huat Ah to 881! top

  • Blogger Francis says so:
    25/9/07 05:34  

    Truly a great inspirations! Your films always have brought a sense...a tinkle in the heart that you will remember. Thank you for great films and wish I was back home. Take care and all the best for 881!!!

    Francis Law top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    12/10/07 05:10  

    Hi Royston i'm federico from rome
    i hope to see you again !!!
    Ciao top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    2/11/07 00:15  

    Royston, can you please check your 881 volume2 album track no: 10 & 11 the song and the lyrics is another way round. top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    14/12/07 02:17  

    I am never a fan of Hokkien songs.

    Being a boring day I decide to watch 881 (DVD bought by my wife).

    I am greatly impressed and a job very well done to all involved.

    You would expect foul Hokkien in the movie but not one was uttered.

    I would highly recommend this movie to all. It has a fantastic story line and the choices of songs and wordings very good.

    Will be getting a few more copies of the DVD to be sent to Sibu, Sarawak and Australia. top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    25/12/07 08:01  

    i have always thought that getai culture = uncle / auntie kinda culture, and thus, this movie would only appeal to my mum's generation. She borrowed the dvd from fren 1 day, and whole family was treated a "feast" of flamboyant costumes, Hokkien oldies presented in "sound of music" or chinese opera kinda style, where actors / actress would sing their hearts out after certain conversations or during certain scenes etc. The ostensive Hokkien used is what makes the show so lively, so full of "local flavour" that I cannot get enuff of. Looking forward to more such works from Royston, Jack and other local talents. top

  • Anonymous Anonymous says so:
    9/3/08 16:54  

    11:30pm on a Saturday night here in southeast San Diego, a kinda rough black community, populated with stupid ass, wannabe Compton gangbangers---that alone would make a wicked piece for a comedy film; anyways, just woke up and caught part of Royston Tan's short on Sundance Channel. For a brief second I saw myself in the last minute of this exquisite film piece, in the reflection from the full-length mirrors my mother had put up on the living room wall---where the piano used to be---me, with a big grin. Royston, you are right about the part where it says something like "those that are the closest to you are the ones who don't really know you that much." I can totally identify with that concept right now in my life. I loved the look and feel of the short, wishing it could have been a full-length movie. Thanks for a wonderful film, it really made what's left of my evening; looking forward to your next production. All The Best, Mark Matlock/Andromeda International Records androintl@earthlink.net top