Special Guests From 13 Countries and Territories to Attend Third Asia Pacific Screen Awards

800 guests from Australia and across Asia-Pacific to walk the red carpet

Nominees and special guests from more than a dozen countries and territories across the Asia-Pacific region are gathering on the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia, for the third Asia Pacific Screen Awards to be presented this Thursday November 26.

Among the nominees travelling to Australia is one of Japan's most notable actors, Masahiro Motoki, nominated for Best Performance by an Actor for Okuribito (Departures, Japan), winner of this year's Academy Award for Best Foreign Film. Masahiro Motoki has twice won Japanese Academy Awards for his work, including for the leading role in the international hit Sumo Do, Sumo Don't.

Japanese superstar, singer AI, will also attend the Awards where she will give an exclusive performance of the breathtaking Departures theme song, which she wrote and performed for the film's soundtrack.

Australian screen legend Jack Thompson will be a presenter at the Awards Ceremony, as well as leading Australian actor Aden Young, a member of this year's APSA International Jury, and Warwick Thornton, writer, director, cinematographer and composer of Australia's acclaimed Samson & Delilah, which is nominated for Best Feature Film will attend as a guest.

Japan's Isao Matsuoka, one of the most influential figures in Japanese film production, distribution and exhibition, will be on the Gold Coast to accept the APSA 2009 FIAPF Award for Outstanding Achievement in Film.

Also represented are the People's Republic of China, India, Thailand, Russian Federation, Republic of Korea, Israel, Indonesia, New Zealand, Islamic Republic of Iran, Turkey, The Philippines and Sri Lanka.

Nominees across all Asia Pacific Screen Award categories will be attending including nominee for Best Feature Film, Asghar Farhadi, the writer/director/producer of Darbareye Elly (About Elly, Islamic Republic of Iran); Lu Chuan, director of Best Feature Film nominee Nanjing! Nanjing! (City of Life and Death, People's Republic of China; legendary Sri Lankan actress Malani Foneska, nominated for Best Performance by an Actress for Akasa Kumum (Flowers of the Sky, Sri Lanka); and Best Performance by an Actor nominee Yang Ik-June, from the Republic of Korea, nominated for his performance in Ddongpari (Breathless) which he also directed.

Other nominees confirmed to attend include Sion Sono nominated for Achievement in Directing for Ai no Mukidashi (Love Exposure, Japan), Best Screenplay nominee Kundo Koyama for Okuribito (Departures, Japan), Thai cinematographer Uruphong Rakasasad for Sawan Baan Na (Agrarian Utopia), Australian producer Melanie Coombs, nominated for Best Children's Feature Film for Mary and Max, Australian filmmaker David MacDougall nominated for Best Documentary Feature Film for Ghandi's Children; Best Performance by an Actress nominee Yana Troyanova for Volchok (Wolfy, Russian Federation) and Best Feature Film nominee Avi Kleinberger, co-producer of The Time That Remains (Palestinian Territories).

Best Children's Feature Film nominees Korean producer Lee Joon-Dong for Ye Haeng Ja (A Brand New Life); Indonesian producers Nan Achnas and Nurman Hakim for 3 Doa 3 Cinta (Pesantren: 3 Wishes 3 Loves); New Zealand producer Fiona Copland for Strength of Water; Atalay Taşdiken for Mommo – Kizkardesim (The Bogeyman); and Indian producer Mubina Rattonsey for Tahaan – A Boy With A Grenade will also attend.

In addition, Achievement in Cinematography nominees attending the Awards are Maxim Drozdov from the Russian Federation for Bumaznyl Soldat (Paper Soldier); Alexei Arsentiev for Volchok (Wolfy), also from the Russian Federation. Representing Ali Mohammad Ghasemi for Cheraghi Dar Meh (A Light In The Fog) from the Islamic Republic of Iran is his wife, herself a screenwriter, Azam Najafian Najaf Abadi.

Best Screenplay nominees also on the Gold Coast are Baek Seung-bin for Jang-rye-sik-ui (Members of the Funeral, Republic of Korea) and Park Eun-kyo for Madeo (Mother, Republic of Korea).

Thailand is further represented by the producers Ing K and Manit Sriwanichpoom, nominated for Best Documentary Feature Film for Polamuang Juling (Citizen Juling).

Also attending are Kazuhiro Soda, producer of Seishin (Mental), from Japan, nominated for Best Documentary Feature Film; the director of the Russian Federation/Japanese production Perviy Otryad (First Squad: The Moment of Truth), nominated for Best Animated Feature Film, Ashina Yoshiharu; and Nozomu Takahashi, producer of Samâ Wôzu (Summer Wars) from Japan, also nominated for Best Animated Feature Film.

“This is a tremendous roll-call of filmmakers from across Asia-Pacific and evidences just how far the Asia Pacific Screen Awards has progressed, after just three years, in our determination to create an Award for filmmakers of the Asia-Pacific region which is globally recognized and which makes a real difference in growing audiences around the world for their work,” said APSA Chairman Des Power.

Red Carpet photo and interview opportunities begin at 5.30pm, Thursday November 26, at the Gold Coast Exhibition and Convention Centre, Queensland, Australia.

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