Singapore, 7 April 2020

The Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF) has appointed experienced arts manager Emily Hoe to the role of Executive Director to lead the festival. Emily takes over from Yuni Hadi and will focus on strengthening the organisational structure, governance and growth of the institution and further develop the strategies and vision of the festival. This year marks the 31st edition of SGIFF, and the appointment aims to make SGIFF more responsive to the challenges facing festivals in the rapidly evolving media landscape, while maintaining its commitment to the growth of the independent film ecosystem in Southeast Asia.

New Leadership at SGIFF

SGIFF has restructured its festival team to better position itself for the challenges facing film festivals in the future. It has appointed Emily Hoe as its new Executive Director to lead the organisation, festival and strategies. Emily said of her appointment, “SGIFF is a loved part of the Singapore arts scene and it is a privilege to continue my career in the arts with the festival as Executive Director. I am very much looking forward to working with Ming-Jung and the team, ensuring that we are collectively striving towards clear objectives that uphold the vision and values of the festival. The audience, sponsors, partners, donors and supporters are as instrumental to the festival as the programmes and filmmakers. Partnerships and collaborations are going to be more important in building growth, locally, regionally and internationally, and alternative screening platforms could also be key to growth in audiences as well.”

On her own specific role, Emily added, “My hope for the festival is to continue to solidify its position within the region and beyond, to champion the amazing work and talent that is being created and developed in Asia, and to bring the audience on a journey of discovery through shared experiences, deeper engagement and conversation. Nurturing and supporting filmmakers has also been a key part of the festival’s work and will continue to be so, and a year-round programme will be developed further. I would like to see the festival growing in stature on all fronts, and I will lead the strategy on this in collaboration with the team and the Board.” 

Emily, who has previously held key roles at Esplanade, Singapore’s national performing arts centre and was General Manager of The Substation arts centre, takes over from the previous Executive Director, Yuni Hadi, who was with the festival since 2014. The Board of SGIFF expressed their thanks to her, saying, “Yuni has been an instrumental part of the SGIFF’s success in the past 6 years. Under her leadership, the SGIFF has grown and benefitted many in the filmmaking communities in Singapore and the region. The Board and staff of SGIFF are very grateful for her contributions.”

Of Emily’s appointment, SGIFF Chairperson Sebastian Tan said, “Emily’s experience and track record in the arts make her the perfect candidate who will take the SGIFF further into the future. We are all aligned on the importance of film as an art form, and in film’s power to inform, transform and inspire. There is so much potential in expanding the role of films in our lives and we are excited to have Emily on board this journey with us.”

Noting the exceptional circumstances surrounding the timing of her appointment, Emily also said, “Given the current uncertainty that has arisen from the development of Covid-19, we are developing contingency plans for the festival and looking prudently and critically at the festival programme and budgets, without compromising on artistic integrity or rigour. These conditions also give us an opportunity to explore alternative creative ways of engaging our film communities.”

Emily will work closely with Kuo Ming-Jung who leads the artistic team. Ming-Jung was appointed Programme Director of the festival in May 2019 and has been re-designated as Artistic Director. She was previously a consultant to the festival from 2017 to 2018. Prior to joining SGIFF, Ming-Jung was programme director at the Taipei Film Festival.

The Singapore International Film Festival has set the dates for its 31st edition in 2020. At present it is intended to take place between 26th November and 6th December 2020. Call for Entries for film submissions, Southeast Asian Film Lab and Youth Jury and Critics Programme will be opened later in April. 

SGIFF is an event of the Singapore Media Festival (SMF), hosted by Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) of Singapore.

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