Category Archives: film festival

Sabahans could be Earth’s saviours!


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Sabahans could be Earth’s saviours
By Zan Azlee

The movement and collection of heat and carbon dioxide caused by pollution and global warming shows a worrying trend for countries near the equator. Satellite images show that it is heading towards the equator where most of the world’s forests are, and that includes Malaysia, and more specifically Sabah and Sarawak.

The reason why the forest areas are the places heat and carbon dioxide gathers is because only the forests have the natural ability to actually treat the problem. And what is more interesting, studies have shown that the areas where most of the world’s forests are, are also places that have the most numbers of languages spoken.

This study was made known to me yesterday, at the start of the 2013 Borneo Eco Film Festival in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, by speaker and festival organizer, Agnes Agama. I’m convinced the study, conducted by Terralingua.Org, is true seeing that the Amazon has so many different tribes and ethnicities and different languages.

And I am even more convinced when I see Sarawak and, more specifically, Sabah where there are also many different ethnicities and languages. It also seems totally logical without an ounce of coincidence that the responsibility of saving the earth falls on areas that have such wide biocultural diversity.

If you have ever been to Sabah, then you would know that the relationship amongst people of different races and religions is different than in Malaya. [Click to read the full article at English.AstroAwani.Com]

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Journalist Tim Pool, TIME magazine’s Person of the Year 2011


Social media journalism
By Zan Azlee

JUNE 22 — Recently, on the invitation of the British Council and FINAS, I attended the Sheffield Documentary Film Festival in the United Kingdom. While there, I took every opportunity to engage with other documentary film-makers and journalists who were in attendance.

Among those I was looking forward to meeting was Tim Pool, the journalist who garnered fame after live-streaming the Occupy Wall Street protests last September. He live-streamed the raid on the Zuccoti Park protest for 21 hours non-stop, which immediately turned him into one of the most well-known journalists of the moment.

His coverage was picked up by several news organisations and he was even nominated as one of the 100 most influential people by Time magazine. He was scheduled to hold a talk in Sheffield on his experience covering the OWS movement as a social media journalist.

The talk was informative and also exciting as he screened several clips from his “live” coverage of the protests in New York. I sat down with him after the crowd left. [Click to read the full article at The Malaysian Insider]

I guess my New Media isn’t so new!


Newer new media
By Zan Azlee

JUNE 15 — I’ve always had the idea that multimedia or interactive content meant that it had to be able to be delivered over traditional and also new media. Basically, I thought that if you produce this kind of content, you could have a version on television, radio, print and the Internet at the same time. Many of my documentary projects have been based on this concept and have always been designed so I can adapt the content for any kind of media.

For example, my latest project, which I shot in Afghanistan, appeared on television, the Internet and print media. And to be honest, I think that this particular concept is already quite interesting and innovative. In fact, it has allowed my content to be more widely accessible. But this week, I had this point of view totally transformed. I’m currently attending the Sheffield Documentary Film Festival in England as part of the Malaysian delegation. [Click to read the full article at The Malaysian Insider]

When creative minds get together – The Marketplace of Creative Arts, Singapore


And so you all knew I went to the WIEF’s Marketplace of Creative Arts in Singapore on the 19th of February 2011. Below are some pictures and videos along with an article I wrote for The Malaysian Insider.

When creative minds get together
By Zan Azlee

MARCH 4 – Filmmaking to me is almost like a solitary process. Being a solo-journalist, I write, shoot, edit and do everything as a one-man crew. To me, it’s almost like writing or painting, whereby the writer or artist produces artwork in solitude, almost like meditation. I enjoy the process very much as it gives me total control of my work. It is also a form of discovery for me – about the subjects of my films and also about myself.

However, sometimes being in solitude doesn’t do much good for the creative soul. To be a creative artist, one needs to sometimes interact with like minded souls. So, when I was invited to the World Islamic Economic Forum’s Marketplace of Creative Arts in Singapore (held for the second year), I jumped at the chance. [Click to read the rest of the article at The Malaysian Insider]

Tun Musa Hitam (Chairman of WIEF Foundation) does his best Facebook pose!
Some panel discussion going on.
This was the panel discussion to be at since I was a part of this one! Topic: All the World is a Stage- Role of Education & Information in Propagating Appreciation of the Arts
Me, Sirajuddin (one of the Singaporean organisers) and Yosep Anggi (a filmmaker from Jogjakarta)
Of all people to bump into... I bumped into Amanda.... We acted together once in a film called 'Benda Aneh Bernama Cinta', directed by Azharr Rudin.

Click here to watch the trailer of ‘Benda Aneh Bernama Cinta’.

The whole lot
I had to indulge an adoring fan!

And a video of Otam during rehearsals.

I’ll be in Singapore screening some films and speaking… come catch me in the flesh!


I’ve been invited this year (again!) to screen some of my films and to speak at the World Islamic Economic Forum’s Marketplace of Creative Arts in Singapore, this 19th February 2011, at the Asian Civilisations Museum near the Esplanade Park. Click here to check out more information on the event. So all you fans of mine should come out in droves! Singaporeans… here’s your chance to see me in the flesh… my very sexy flesh!!

“The WIEF Young Leaders Network is coming up with another excellent showcase on creative arts. This time it will be just next door in Lion City – Singapore, organised in partnership with the Young Association of Muslim Professionals (AMP) in Singapore. This will be the Marketplace’s first ever regional leg, focusing on up-and-coming artists in the Southeast Asian region namely Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand and the Phil…ippines. Visual artists, great musicians, exotic dancers and thought-provoking filmmakers awaiting you in the city of lions. Excellent venue, near the Esplanade Park and by the Singapore river.

For those who are interested to attend, please be informed that this is a registered event i.e. only registered participants are allowed entry (no walk-ins on event day), and for licensing purposes we have limited the crowd to 300 participants for the day. We have to close registration if we reach 300. So, if you want to book your place, please register online by clicking here. First come, first served!”