June 19, 2024

EST N8, a recently-established finance, production and rights sales company, has added a Hong Kong remake of classic film “Tape” and the LGBT comedy-drama “ASOG” to its bulging sales slate at the AFCM market that accompanies the Busan Intenational Film Festival.

“Tape” tells the story of three best friends who, following an event at a graduation party that transforms their lives, reunite 15 years later where a case of blackmail forces them to confront a terrible secret from their past.

The original film starred Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman and Robert Sean Leonard and played at the Sundance, Toronto and Rotterdam festivals.

In the Cantonese-language remake directed by Bizhan Tong, Selena Lee, Kenny Kwan, and Adam Pak play the contemporary characters while Mason Fung, Summer Chan, and Angus Yeung portray the characters’ younger versions.

The script is written by Stephen Belber, Tong, Lee and Bonnie Lo, and is an adaptation of Belber’s own scripts from both the original film and stage play. The writers and director have significantly modernized the script to reflect advances in technology.

Producers on the film include Tong, Lee and Belber. It is a co-venture between Phoenix Waters Productions, Marvion, and Agog Films. Production is completed, but the film’s festival and commercial releases have yet to be determined.

Boasting Adam McKay and Alan Cumming as executive producers, “ASOG” is a comedy-drama directed by Sean Devlin (“Borat Subsequent Moviefilm,” “When the Storm Fades”). When a non-binary schoolteacher decides to compete in the Ms Gay Sigocon pageant she meets unlikely friends along the way who paint a devastating but hopeful picture of The Philippines after Typhoon Yolanda.

Presented in Tagalog, the film has a cast headed by Jaya Aclao (“No Room For Love”) and Arnel Pablo (“When the Storm Fades”). It premiered earlier this year at the Tribeca festival and this month plays at the BFI London, SXSW Sydney and Warsaw festivals.

EST N8 is a partnership between EST Studios and Bangkok-based N8 Studios that was officially launched at Cannes this year and operates under the combined moniker. The two parent companies still operate as separate entities.  

EST Studios was founded in 2022 by Jaeson Ma and Eric Tu, and represents all genres of Asian content in the international marketplace. It is looking at an annual slate of 15 projects that it will be financing, producing, and representing for sales.

N8 was founded by Kris Eiamsakulrat and Rachel Wu with a focus on the untold stories of 4.5 billion Asian voices around the world. N8 formed a partnership with leading Thai studio GDH559, to co-produce a slate of Thai thriller and horror films aimed at the global audience.

EST N8’s Busan slate also includes: Korean documentary feature “April Tragedy (The Daughters of That Day)” which debuts in the Busan festival’s Wide Angle section; Manoj Bajpayee-starring “Joram,” which debuted in Rotterdam and screens at Busan; Anurag Kashyap’s Sunny Leone-starring “Kennedy,” which debuted in Cannes; and Fukunaga Takeshi’s “Mountain Woman,” which premiered last year at the Tokyo festival.

Additionally, it co-produced: horror film “Home For Rent,” which is one of the most successful Thai horror films ever; drama “The Monk and The Gun” by Pawo Dorji, which premiered at the recent Toronto film festival and is Bhutan’s official submission for the 2024 Academy Awards.

N8 is also producing “Heals” by Emmy-winning director Pailin Wedel, featuring Pangina Heals, a leading Asian drag queen.

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