The Asian Film Archive was founded in January 2005 as a non-governmental organisation to preserve the
rich film heritage of Singapore and Asian Cinema, to encourage scholarly research on film, and to promote a wider critical appreciation of this art form.
The Archive is the winner of the New Non-Profit Initiative Award at the annual
National Volunteers and Philanthropy Awards 2007 (Singapore), which recognises
organisations for their originality, sustainability, impact and best practices.
The Archive is an affliate of the International Federation of Film Archives
(FIAF) and a member of the Southeast Asia-Pacific Audiovisual Archives
As an important
nexus, it brings together the various segments of the Asian film community in order to open and enrich new intellectual, educational and creative spaces.
Films from Asia regularly win awards from the most important international festivals.
Southeast Asia is the site of the new Asian digital cinema movement. It is most
unfortunate that these works are generally inaccessible once the film festivals
end. These films are rarely released commercially in theatres or distributed otherwise
- those who attempt are often overwhelmed by the power of Hollywood's marketing dollar. With the expanding interest in contemporary scholarship and a growing appreciation
of film as a cultural and historical document, these orphan films have earned their
place and right to be archived.
Without a doubt, Asia's creative industries are gaining global attention. Coming
from various countries with different cultures, films from Asia are increasingly
hybrids of cross-border and cross-cultural influence. This has brought about a sense
of cosmopolitanism and transnationalism. With an increasing self-awareness of the
Asian diaspora, contemporary Asian political and cultural issues are constantly
represented in fresh cinematic works. With Singapore's uniquely multi-cultural character,
we create the ideal leverage for the development of an Asian Film Archive, which
would collect acclaimed Asian works.
To nurture the Asian film community, the Asian Film Archive aspires to be much more
than just a repository of film and tape. It is to be a hub for the film community,
contributing to culture, scholarship and industry.
In January 2014, the Asian Film Archive became a subsidiary of the National Library Board in continuing its mission to preserve and share the film heritage of Asia, and to inspire greater appreciation for film, its art and industry. The Asian Film
Archive is a charity based in Singapore, and an Institution of Public Character.