Film adaptation of critically-acclaimed novel, The Garden of Evening Mists (TGOEM), will make its world premiere at the 24th Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) under the ‘A Window on Asian Cinema’ category, this October 2019. TGOEM has also been selected as the ‘Closing Film’ at the 56th Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival in November 2019. TGOEM is presented by Astro Shaw and HBO Asia with support from the National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS) in association with CJ Entertainment.
An adaption of the novel which was shortlisted for the 2012 Man Booker Prize, and also won the 2013 Man Asian Literary Prize and the 2013 Walter Scott Prize, the feature film adaptation has seen an international production team from Taiwan, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, India, Australia and UK working to bring together this celebrated novel to the silver screen.
This global production is helmed by award-winning Taiwanese director Tom Shu-Yu Lin and adapted by Scottish BAFTA-winning screenwriter Richard Smith. It boasts a star-studded international cast including Sinje Lee (The Eye), Hiroshi Abe (After the Storm), Sylvia Chang (Love Education), David Oakes (Cold Skin), Julian Sands (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) and John Hannah (The Mummy).
The film tells the story of Teoh Yun Ling (played by Sinje Lee) who, embittered from atrocities of World War II in Malaya, seeks solace in the rolling hills of Cameron Highlands. There, in her quest to build a garden in homage of her late sister, she embarks on a forbidden love affair with the mysterious gardener, Nakamura Aritomo (played by Hiroshi Abe).
Agnes Rozario, Director of Content, Astro said "Our belief in Malaysian story telling led us to initiate the production of this film adapted from Penang-born author Tan Twan Eng’s wonderful book. We feel validated and so proud to be recognised by our peers with the film’s global premiere at the prestigious Busan International Film Festival and to close for the Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival."
Jonathan Spink, CEO, HBO Asia said, “HBO Asia is thrilled that the feature film we partnered with Astro Shaw on, THE GARDEN OF EVENING MISTS, will screen at both the Busan International Film Festival and the Golden Horse Film Festival. HBO Asia is not only committed to bringing quality and award-winning Asian Original series but feature films to our audiences across 23 territories in Asia and beyond.”
Dato' Hans Isaac, Chairman of National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS) said, “We are immensely delighted that The Garden of Evening Mists will be screened during the Busan International Film Festival and Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival. Over two thirds of the casts and crew of TGOEM comprised of Malaysians. This signifies our potentials and capabilities in producing an International Film and we pride Astro Shaw for its commitment to nurture local talents for international exposure. Thus, we are excited to have a film which FINAS has supported to be showcased to the world”.
The Garden of Evening Mists is slated to debut in Malaysian cinemas starting January 2020.