Actress Jeanette Aw is proving her mettle by juggling two additional roles for her short film Senses; besides acting in it, she’s being credited as both a writer and director.
This is not the first time Aw has challenged herself as a creative person; she shot, wrote and directed her first short film, The Last Entry in 2017, which was inspired by her godmother’s struggles with Alzheimer’s disease. The film was selected to be screened at the Tokyo Short Shorts Film Festival (SSFF) & Asia 2018.
Aw, who spent 15 years growing her career with Mediacorp and talent company Hype Records, announced in October 2017 that she was going solo to give her more control over her career.
Aw filmed Senses in Takasaki, Japan in December 2018, with the help of a local and Japanese crew. The budding filmmaker befriended the Japanese team, whom she met on the set of Eric Khoo’s Ramen Teh.
Following her performance in Ramen Teh, which was partially shot in Takasaki, Aw was appointed as the city’s ambassador in September 2018. In her letter of appointment, it is said that Aw "shall endeavour to promote the city’s tourism, products and information to Singapore and the world."
According to 8days, Aw was blown away by her interactions with the people in Takasaki.
“They were simple, kind, generous and extremely hospitable. So many are family-owned businesses, be it in the farms, the F&B shops, even the shrines (now the 27th generation running it). It is also a place with so much history.”
In her short film, Senses, Aw plays a blind female character named Xuan, who begins a solo journey by exploring the world with her heart. As her painful past confronts her, she also “sees” the most beautiful of sights and connects with kind souls.
Based on her Facebook post, Aw shared that this experience had “taught me so much and made me grow as a creative. I believe stepping out of my comfort zone has allowed me to do one thing, spread my wings and learn to fly.”
Aw wrote, acted and directed the short film in partnership with Takasaki City and Takasaki Tourism Association.
Watch the trailers below.