SGIFF: ‘A Yellow Bird’ Director K Rajagopal Sings

Mark Schilling

Director K Rajagopal may be have gone to Cannes this year with his first feature “A Yellow Bird,” about a homeless ex-con on the streets of Singapore, but he was also enthused by the film’s reception at the SGIFF, where it is screening in competition.

The SGIFF, which comes to a close on Saturday, is part of the wider Singapore Media Festival.

“The screening was sold out and everyone stayed until the end,” he said. “I’m very happy with the reaction here.” Though a native Singaporean, Rajagopal admits that, similar to the film’s hero, he too has felt “on the edge and an outsider in my own country.”

But with “A Yellow Bird” being one of two films from Singapore invited to Cannes this year, the director says that “people are seeing me differently now.”

A further test, however, comes next month when the film opens commercially in Singapore.

Local films generally only account for some 5% of the Singapore theatrical market. But whatever its box office fate, Rajagopal is pressing forward. “I’ve already got an idea for my next film,” he says. “Now I have to write it.”

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