The producing-directing duo of Lau Chee Nien and Han Yew Kwang, who have brought us comedies such as Unarmed Combat in 2006 and their 2008 hit film 18 Grams of Love, have returned for their third feature film titled When Hainan Meets Teochew / 当海南遇上潮州, an Un-romantic Comedy starring two leads who are neither famous nor good looking. Yes you read that right, but hey, it's a bold move that pokes fun at the romantic comedy genre.
Made with the support from the National Arts Council, the film is the debut production under their new company 18g Pictures (no prizes how that name came about!), which was set up in 2009 to create original content with a distinctive sense of humour. As the synopsis goes,
When a bra falls on Ms. Teochew, she immediately wins the lottery. Meanwhile, Hainan-boy, whom the bra belongs to begins an earnest search for her lost bra. Her trails leads her to the home of Ms. Teochew, where a struggle leads to Ms. Teochew being booted out of her rented home. Feeling guilty, Hainan-boy invites Ms. Teochew to move in with her. Will this be the start of a beautiful romance?
As director Han Yew Kwang mentioned in a released statement, the meaning of love changes as we age, and in the last 10 years he had seen how his equation of love - "50% romantic and 50% unromantic" had evolved into "5% romantic, 5% unromantic and 90% getting used to and tolerating each other", before culminating in being "100% non-romantic, yet at the same time 100% funny". Hence a film is born, with "No beautiful sets, no pretty faces and no lyrical dialogue".
I for one am anticipating this film, as the Lau-Han partnership has yielded something unique in the local comedy film scene here in recent years (including their projects for television), and this effort reunites some of their previous cast members such as Lee Chau Min, Yeo Yann Yann, Alaric Tay, Catherine Sng and Soundrarajan Jeeva from the earlier films, all familiar showbiz personalities in their own right.
Check out the official movie webpage here, or get the latest updates from the movie's Facebook page, filled with plenty of photos, videos, and a chronology of the film's development in anecdotal form all posted on the Wall.
When Hainan Meets Teochew is in Mandarin and English and is rated NC-16 for mature theme and some sexual reference. It will debut at The Arts House and Sinema on 3 Dec 2010. Tickets priced at $10 ($8 concession for students, senior citizens and NSF) will go on sale from 12 Nov. Mark those dates down on your calendar NOW!