Ambassador of France to Singapore
It is a pleasure to welcome you to the 39th edition of the vOilah! French Film Festival.
The vOilah! France Singapore Festival has been a flagship event for French culture in Singapore for many years. Every November, tens of thousands of people have enjoyed exhibitions, concerts, film screenings and gastronomic tastings. This year, in order to increase its success and at the same time its accessibility and visibility, I am pleased to inform you that we will now be presenting two annual festivals in Singapore, the vOilah! French Film Festival in November 2023 and the vOilah! Cultural Festival in May 2024.
This 39th edition of the vOilah! French Film Festival is organised by the Embassy of France in Singapore with the support of both Singaporean and French partners. As in previous years, we have put together a selection of the best recently-released French films for you to discover the variety of French cinema.
You will be able to enjoy 38 films in total, from action-packed thrillers and romantic movies to costume dramas, including the long-awaited cloak-and-dagger The Three Musketeers – D’Artagnan by Martin Bourboulon, The Taste of Things, a gastronomic love story by Tran Anh Hung (nominated to represent France at the 96th Academy awards), and the critically-acclaimed The Animal Kingdom. The director of this exceptional science-fiction adventure with an environmental twist, Thomas Cailley, has done us the honour of coming to Singapore for the Festival.
This year’s festival will feature a record number of family films, with no fewer than 16 comedy films and animated movies including the highly anticipated Miraculous: Lady Bug and Cat Noir, The Movie, Icarus and the Minotaur and The Jungle Bunch: World Tour.
Singapore’s independent cinema, will meet the expectations of the moviegoers with a high-quality selection dedicated to the Cannes Film Festival with the screening of the Justine Triet’s Anatomy of a Fall, winner of the Palme d’Or 2023 and with a tribute to the late singer and actress Jane Birkin who passed away a few months ago.
This edition will also serve as a platform to continue meaningful conversations around climate change, which is presently a common concern and a global challenge for all. As such, a special segment will be dedicated to this topic in the hope of raising more awareness through various programs, namely, the screening of powerful films such as Thomas Bidegain’ Suddenly and the Yann Arthus-Bertrand documentary Vibrant as well as talks with environmental experts from Singapore and France.
This year, we are also extending our outreach efforts to make French cinema more accessible and available to everyone. We are thus renewing our partnership with People’s Association to organise free screenings of family and child-friendly movies and animations in many Community Clubs. We are also delighted to announce a partnership with Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) for open-air film screenings over an entire weekend.
I am extremely grateful to our partners, Alliance Française de Singapour, Shaw Organisation, The Projector, and thank them for their strong commitment to the vOilah! French Film Festival. I would also like to express my deepest gratitude to all our sponsors without whom this 39th edition would not have been possible.
Happy screenings to all!
Film Director / Festival Patron
It is especially meaningful for me to return as guest-of-honour at the vOilah! French Film Festival this year. 10 years ago, in 2013, my first feature film Ilo Ilo premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in France and won the prestigious Caméra d’Or for best debut feature. 10 years later, at Cannes this year, my fourth feature film The Breaking Ice premiered in the Un Certain Regard section of the festival, also the fourth time I have a work selected at Cannes.
Over the decades, French cinema has inspired and influenced many generations of filmmakers across the world. French films are a delight to discover, usually bold and free, and always surprising. My latest film, The Breaking Ice, can be considered a kind of valentine to the French nouvelle vague especially François Truffaut’s Jules et Jim (1962) and Jean-Luc Godard’s Bande à part (1964).
This November, the vOilah! French Film Festival returns again to Singapore, bringing arthouse and commercial gems from France to audiences here. November is also when The Breaking Ice opens in cinemas in France. I have always believed cinema to be a universal language that transcends borders and cultures, so let this annual cultural exchange flourish again through our common love for cinema.
May this year’s film selection charm, provoke and move you in the same way French cinema has always done for me. Enjoy!