The story of Shirkers started in 1992, when teenager Sandi Tan wrote and starred in Singapore’s first road movie, directed by her American mentor, Georges—who then absconded with the footage before it could be edited. The 16mm film was recovered 20 years later, sending Tan, now a novelist in Los Angeles, on a personal odyssey in search of Georges’ vanishing footprints—and her own.
Now Shirkers is here, there and everywhere! In New York at the Metrograph, in L.A. at Laemmle Music Hall, and in London at ICA! As of tonight, this Gotham Award-nominated film will also be available globally on Netflix.
Audiences and critics are roundly cheering for this film (a NYT Critic’s Pick), but it offers even more meaning to those of us who live and breathe movies. Who hasn’t had a beloved project slip away somehow and dreamed of its rebirth?
After making its own road trip around the world since premiering at Sundance, Shirkers went home to Singapore earlier this week. There was a reunion of the original “shirkers”—the friends, family and other recruits from the original project—and an effort to find cast and crew who hadn’t yet surfaced. To see the photos and final count of shirkers lost and found (courtesy of the Singapore Film Society) click here.