ciNE65 Winners - Interview with Lawrence Loh of 'Unwavering'

This film was awarded the Overall Best Film for the open category of ciNE65 Short Film Competition Season Three. SINdie speaks to Lawrence Loh, director of Unwavering.
What were the starting inspirations for this particular story? 

The source of our inspiration came at the time we were about to give up on the competition. I noticed that there is this pantry auntie at the office that i was working in who helps to clear the trash bins every morning and wash our cups. Everyday after lunch, i will spot her sitting in the pantry looking out of the window. This got me thinking - who is she behind the cleaning uniform that she is wearing? What is her story? What is her past?

How did you go about the casting choice for the lead actress? What was the process like?

Well, similar to all our past work, we have very little budget and in fact, we don't have any to start with. However, we wanted to make sure that we get the best talent for our film. We were cutting too close to our production deadline for any proper casting calls. 

I am blessed to be working with Talking Zebra Films and the producer, Samantha Lee, agreed to come onboard together with the DOP, Daniel Ho. He has kindly 'volunteered' his parents. They turned out to be brilliant and such natural actors!

What are some responses to the film, and what are your thoughts on the film after the win?

We were genuinely flattered by everyone's responses so far and honestly, we were very surprised that most people actually noticed the little details such as the scarf and bag which were iconic items carried by the Singapore Girl - kindly sponsored by our producer!

I think we have produced a short film that is able to connect with people at a deeper level and that matters to us a lot. This win has encouraged us even more to continue doing what we always believe in - meaningful storytelling that touches peoples' hearts and souls. We know it's a tall order but it's definitely worth it.

What is your next project?

I would like to produce a longer short film for Singapore Short Film Awards. This does not mean I'll stop producing 3 minute long films but I want to challenge myself in producing longer form films.

Also, my documentary 'A Needle A Stitch' has bagged the Best Documentary for ciNE65 which has pushed me to start producing my next documentary and I'm glad to announce that we are going into production in September. Challenging but exciting times ahead!
 Check out the winning film here.

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