It's been more than two years since the idea of making "The Elephant and the Sea" came to me.
We shot the film from September - Nov of 2006 (about 20 days in total), but before that, pre-prodcution, writing, and planning started from 2005, when the film was granted funding from the Hubert Bals Fund (from the Rotterdam Film Festival).
The film has had many many title changes. Here are some examples:
1. The Monkey Sea
2. The Ocean Circus
3. The History of Pink Elephants
In fact, I felt so confident about the third title, I made 1500 postcards to promote the movie a good 8 months before I started shooting! (the poster design was from the talented Belinda Teoh, a former colleague of mine).
Here's a word of advice to new indie filmmakers. Unless you want a BIG STACK of unused cardboard laying around your house, DO NOT print the postcards before you've finished the film.
True enough, As soon as I wrapped production, I knew the existing title did not fit the film. I finally settled on the simpler, more poetic "Elephant and the Sea". People asked me if it's a metaphor for the two main characters in the film; one is the elephant, the other the sea. To that question I say.... yes. But honestly, I just liked the way it sounded, the way it rolled off your tongue when you said it, and the way it reminded you of something melancholic and from a place you heard of but never been to.
Anyway, the film is finally coming to theaters in MALAYSIA, at the CATHAY CINEPLEXES in August! My one goal for making the film, apart from watching it every night before I sleep (Joke), is to have the film play in a theater, doesn't matter how big or for how long! If we had to buy the tickets and give it to the people so that they will see it, we will do it! (but we won't- not unless you're hot)
But yes, this is a dream come true. My first movie, "Monday Morning Glory", never got a release, and did not even get through the TV censors (MMG is about a terrorist attack). It's a shame, but I believe 4 or 5 people bought the DVD of that film, which I am told is available in some Rock Corner stores and on Amazon.com (my royalties so far: $0.00).
Back to "Elephant and the Sea". The film has traveled the globe, been invited to more than 20 festivals, won 3 awards, and is still playing in some festival somewhere. I believe this month it plays in Spain, and then New Zealand, and then India.
But the most important venue of all is that it's going to be right here in Malaysia! So if you're at all curious, stay tuned, and I'll be updating this blog as often as I can!
PS: I shall be posting videos of the 2 censored SEX SCENES that did not make the cut here on this blog. You don't want to miss it.
Also, i'll also be posting interviews, never-before-seen pictures, and a lot more cool stuff!