Director, screenwriter and producer, Thailand
Born in Bangkok in 1970, Apichatpong Weerasethakul studied architecture at Khon Kaen University and later gained a Master's in film studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
After creating various installations and directing a number of short films, in 2000 he made the full-length feature Mysterious Object at Noon. His subsequent films were enthusiastically received by the critics and took part in numerous international festivals. He appeared at the Cannes Festival with Blissfully Yours (2002) and Tropical Malady (2004), respectively in the Un Certain Regard section and the official competition. In 2006 he was selected for the Venice Film Festival with the film Syndromes and a Century, while his Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (2010) triumphed at Cannes, winning the Golden Palm Award.
> 2006, Syndromes and a Century (Sang sattawat) - 105 min, Thailand, France, Austria
There are filmmakers who return to their childhood for beautiful atmospheric films, but the imaginative Thai master Apichatpong Weerasethakul returns to the time before his parents found each other. Yet his childhood is also evoked in two parts. A sunny part for his mother and a cool and occasionally bizarre part for his father.
> 2005, Ghost of Asia - 09 min, Thailand
Directors: Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Christelle Lheureux
Video that was thought of in the first place as an installation or gallery projection. Ghost of Asia is a celebration of living and its pleasures. The film makers imagine a ghost who still lives and wanders around the seashores. On a Thai island, they invited kids - two boys and a girl - to make a movie. The kids are provided with an actor whose function is like a puppet, like a ghost, to perform tasks dictated by them. Made in the context of the tsunami disaster commemoration.
> 2004, Worldly Desires - 42 min, South Korea.
The maker of the enchanting Tropical Malady returns to the jungle. The set and the crew are now in front of the camera. Sometimes it looks like a making-of, but it's all fiction. Colleague film maker Pimpaka Towira made a story about a forbidden love for the film, of a fleeing couple that seeks sanctuary by a magical tree. And pop music can be heard in the nocturnal jungle. People dance. About guilt-free freedom and memories of filming in the rainforest. Playful, sweet, charming, yet also a cinematographic reflection. An experimental project in which the film maker takes a step backwards for the benefit of his crew.
> 2004, Tropical Malady (Sud pralad) - 118 min, France, Thailand, Italy, Germany.
It is worthwhile learning to pronounce the name Apichatpong Weerasethakul, because this young Thai is one of the hippest newcomers in the international world of art and film. A slinking and sultry film about beautiful soldiers and a tiger from another world.
> 2004, The Adventure of Iron Pussy (Hua jai tor ra nong) - 90 min, Thailand
Directors: Michael Shaowanasai, Apichatpong Weerasethakul
For those for whom a film cannot be crazy enough. A kind of Thai James Bond operates cheerfully and cross-dressed. Lots of mad dressing up, insane adventures and the necessary winks at the Thai genre film.
> 2004, What is (Thai) Cinema? - Thailand
> 2002, Blissfully Yours (Sud senaeha) - 125 min, Thailand
Primaeval film that shows mankind as pure nature. Idiosyncratic, inventive and mysterious film is about daily things one moment and balances on the brink of porn the next; set in the frontier area between Thailand and Burma.
> 2000, Mysterious Object at Noon (Dogfar nai mae marn) - 85 min, Thailand
In this semi-documentary, Weerasethakul provides an original portrayal of his fellow citizens. Battling food vendors, a boxer addicted to TV, a pious policewoman and a loveless rubber-tree tapper each contribute to a serial narrative.
> 1991, Anthem - 05 min, USA
In Thailand, the national anthem is played before the start of every film screening, to honour the king. It is one of the rituals of Thai society with which people and events are blessed. In a similar way, Apichatpong Weerasethakul gives us his cinema anthem, in which an old woman performs a ritual while young men dance. Homage to the cinema god, intended to make sure that life in the outside world will be better after the screening.
Regista, sceneggiatore e produttore, Tailanda
Nato a Bangkok nel 1970, Apichatpong Weerasethakul studia architettura all'Università di Khon Kaen e consegue un master in cinema alla School of the Art Institute di Chicago.
Dopo aver montato diverse installazioni e diretto alcuni cortometraggi, nel 2000 dirige il lungometraggio Dokfa nai meuman (Mysterious Object at Noon). Le sue opere successive saranno accolte entusiasticamente dalla critica e parteciperanno a numerosi festival internazionali. Con Sud sanaeha (Blissfully Yours, 2002) e Sud pralad (Tropical Malady, 2004) partecipa al Festival di Cannes, rispettivamente nelle sezioni Un Certain Regard e in competizione ufficiale. Nel 2006 partecipa alla Mostra Internazionale d'Arte Cinematografica di Venezia con il film Sang sattawat (Syndromes and a Century), mentre con Loong Boonme raleuk chat (Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives, 2010) vince la Palma d'oro al Festival di Cannes.
Source: Locarno 2012