Here some of the frequently asked questions that we have received. If you still have another unanswered questions, please feel free to contact us at info [at] asianfilmarchive.org

What will the Archive collect?

Our emphasis is on works by Asian filmmakers, and/or works about Asian communities. We are especially interested in critically acclaimed works by independent filmmakers whose films are not already archived and catalogued.

Accepted works include:

  • film gauges and video format (35mm, 16mm, 8mm, super 8, digiBeta, BetaSP, miniDV, VHS, HD, DVD and others)
  • born-digital materials and digital films (DPX, DCP, Apple ProRes, H.264, MP4, etc)
  • length (short, medium or feature)
  • genre (eg narrative, documentary, experimental or animation)
  • film-related materials, such as stills, posters, storyboards, scripts, thesis and articles.
Does the Archive collect Asian works made by non-Asian filmmakers?

Yes. While our emphasis is on works by Asian filmmakers, we are also interested in works by non-Asian filmmakers who have made films in Asia, and/or about the Asian communities.

I am a filmmaker from Southeast Asia but I am not based in Asia. Would you be interested in my works?

Yes. The Archive is interested in the works of filmmakers based in Asia as well as films on Asian communities made by filmmakers based around the world.

Do you only keep old works?

No. Filmmakers are encouraged to submit copies of their works as soon as they are made. By depositing early, works can be better archived than on hindsight, where materials could already be misplaced or lost.

Why should I archive my films with the Asian Film Archive?

With a predominantly tropical and humid environment in many parts of Asia, condition of film formats (including digital formats) can deteriorate rapidly if not kept properly. To ensure your films are preserved for posterity, all film masters are preserved in secure and 24-hour temperature and climate-controlled vaults to prolong their lifespan. Other materials such as scripts, stills, posters can be prolonged if kept in acid free packaging to prevent deterioration. All films and related materials are maintained and conserved in accordance with accepted standards of archival procedures.

Will my rights to the film be relinquished when I deposit my works?

No. The deposit of the films and film related materials does not constitute an assignment or transfer of the copyright or any other intellectual property rights. Unless explicitly expressed, any rights subsisting in the films and film related materials shall at all times remain vested in the relevant copyright owners.

All staff and volunteers of the AFA handling materials and information are carefully selected and are required to sign non-disclosure agreements to protect the confidentiality of information and materials submitted to AFA.

Can I take my films out when I deposit my works at Asian Film Archive?

Yes. However, to avoid damage to the original films, we strongly recommend not moving master copies out of the Archive unnecessarily. We recommend the use of screening copies instead of the originals/masters, whenever possible.

My film is currently touring the film festival circuit, should I be archiving it at this time?

Archival of films is a continual process. The Archive encourages filmmakers to deposit films whenever possible to minimise further damage and/or the potential of them being misplaced. For film festivals and retrospectives, the AFA can liaise with the relevant organisations to assist in such screenings. We can help facilitate film traffic by shipping them to film festivals, and to ensure the copies are returned after the events. All expenses, taxes, duties related to the shipping, customs clearance, keeping, repair, and returning of the loaned films are to be borne by the borrower.

My film is new and has not premiered at any film festival. Can I opt out from making it available for public access?

We understand the need to withhold public access to films that are awaiting premieres and can do so for a definite period until the appropriate time for release to the public.

What does the Archive do with materials collected? What will happen to my film once it is included in the Asian Film Archive collection?

With agreement from the filmmaker, the Asian Film Archive will

  1. Provide public reference copies of the films within a library premise
  2. Promote the films through organised community programmes
  3. Include films for viewing via AFA’s online platforms
Will I be paid for my films that are preserved?

No. The Archive provides preservation service to filmmakers as part of its mission to save, explore and share the Asian cinematic heritage. The Archive is a not-for-profit organisation.

Will I be charged for the preservation of my films?

No. The Archive will bear all costs relating to documentation, logistics, safekeeping, maintenance and promotion of the films.

Will my film be used for commercial exhibition/distribution by the Asian Film Archive?

All activities will be non-commercial in nature as the Archive is a non-profit organisation. Any proceeds will go to the preservation and cultural mission of the Archive, and not to the commercial reward of any individual, group or organisation. Your consent will be sought should a film be selected for a commercial exhibition or if there is a request by external parties for screening. You reserve the right to charge a screening/usage fee for these external requests.

Can you send my film to someone who wants to see it?

The AFA does not circulate films from its collection by request of external parties without the permission of the rights owner. We encourage users to visit the AFA’s reference collection housed at the library@esplanade or at its administrative office at the National Library Building.