Film fans meet in Bangkok

BANGKOK, 10 January  2020: A VIP line up of speakers and film critics will beef up the profile of the upcoming  2nd Asia Destination Film Forum 2020, hosted in Bangkok 30 January.

Thailand’s Minister of Culture, Itthipol Khunpluem and National Federation of Motion Pictures and Contents Association secretary-general,  Sorajak Kasemsuwan will co-chair the event.

The inaugural event was launched at the Mekong Tourism Forum in Nakhon Phanom, Thailand, May 2018, by the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) to showcase films that promoted the six destination countries of the Mekong Region ( Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam).

However, the second edition extends to include films from around Asia cashing in on the growing phenomenon of tourists visiting destinations featured in movies and user-generated social media video clips.

Leading lights in the movie and media business, Nick Ray from Hanuman Films,  Joe Cummings, editor Bangkok 101 and Fah Daengdej host of The Passion on Nation TV 22, head the VIP list of speakers and panellists. They will explore how consumers are inspired by visual storytelling from movies to user-generated videos to visit destinations, how tourism boards can leverage films and how businesses can benefit from visual storytelling, and how it can drive sustainability.

Case studies, such as the one presented by Tom Waller, producer of “The Cave” (Thailand), which re-tells the captivating rescue of the Wild Boards soccer team and their coach in 2018, top the forum’s agenda along with case-studies by the Singapore Tourism Board, Busan City Tourism Organization, as well as the Tourism Authority of Thailand.

The forum will also look at how current films promote destinations. Winner of Best Feature Film at the 2019 San Diego International Film Festival “The Steed” (Mongolia), as well as Hanuman Films’ award-winning “The Last Reel” (Cambodia) will screen during the event.

In addition, films submitted to the Thailand Film Festival, in collaboration with the Thailand Film Office of the Department of Tourism, and the Mekong Mini Movie Festival, in partnership with the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office, will be shown during the forum.

Besides looking at the impact of feature-length movies, the event also includes sessions on the importance of traveller and blogger-generated visual content and how travel companies can benefit from destinations being used as film locations.

In the evening, the 2020 Asia Destination Film Awards, as well as the Mekong Mini Movie Festival Awards, will be presented, followed by an authentic Mongolia BBQ Film Festival night with a Mongolian celebrity BBQ chef and traditional cultural performances hosted by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism Mongolia.

Nominations to the Asia Destination Film Awards in the categories Tourism Boards, Travel Industry, User-Generated, Professional Film Makers, and Sustainable Travel, are still open until 17 January 2020 via http://www.destinationfilmforum.com/.

Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office executive director and founder of the Destination Film Forum and Awards, Jens Thraenhart said: “The power of inspiring people via film goes beyond promoting destinations; it can also drive change and responsible travel behaviour, striving to emphasize tourism that is sustainable, responsible, environmentally conscious, and bringing benefits to local communities.

“ In partnership with WWF and Khiri Travel, the Mekong Mini Movie Festival is creating awareness of sustainable tourism and conservation, focusing on the festival’s mascot, the endangered Mekong Dolphin,” he added.

The Asia Destination Film Forum and Awards 2020 will take place on 30 January at Quaint Bangkok in partnership with the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO), Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), and Chameleon Strategies.

A Destination Film Forum networking happy hour with film previews will take place at Spectrum Lounge & Bar 29 January at 1730 in partnership with the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office, the Pacific Asia Travel Association and Travel Massive and supported by the Hyatt Regency Bangkok Sukhumvit.

More information about the event and registration is available on http://www.destinationfilmforum.com/.

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