Shing Kui also known as Matthew Kui was born in Beijing, China. He is a director, producer, writer and actor. Matthew’s parents met and both graduated from Peking University in Beijing China. Since childhood, Matthew always held tremendous passion and interest towards storytelling/moviemaking. He was raised in Mainland China and came to the United States for college and graduated from Arizona State University in Arizona with a degree in film and media studies. Matthew has participated in numerous projects throughout school. he started to direct and produce his own projects such as “Addiction”, “Stiffed” and “The Last Target”. His debut short film as a writer and director “Addiction” has received official selections from multiple film festivals. His following film “Stiffed” directed by him have won the best thriller award at the Venice Shore Film Festival.
Your project takes a part in our festival. What is your project about?
My project "The Last Target" tells the story of an extreme skilled assassin finally decided to leave the game after completing one more job. However, his last target turns out to be his former partner who is just as skilled and talented of an assassin as he is.
What were your requirements for actors to take a part of your film?
The most important requirement I ask for my actors is that if they truly understand the character they are playing. Did they fully become the character? Are they able to transfer the character in my script into a lively character in the movie. I would talk to the actors before the shoot and make sure all is set before production.
How did you communicate with the cameraman?
The cameraman is known as the director's second eye. I would visualize on my own how the scenes would play out and afterwards I would tell the cameraman the type of shot I want, what kind of emotion I want to convey and the cameraman would find the right camera lenses and together we turn the vision into reality.
What locations did you choose for your project? And why?
I meticulously selected the location that would fit the tone of my story. The story is set in urban city, I made sure to make the set feel like it is taking place in an apartment building residing in a giant metropolitan that constantly have things going on.
Why should distributors buy your film?
I already have a general idea of what I would do if I were to extend "The Last Target" in to a feature film. It has a lot of potential to be developed into a feature film. The two protagonists both have back stories to be told and the story has a lot of room for more supporting characters and villains.
What expression elements did you use in your project? How would you characterize your work?
I want to make sure my firm is able to convey the genuine emotion I want to deliver to the audience. A good film should be able to resonate a person's emotion and that is what I go for every time.
At what festivals have you had success? Has the film already premiered? If so, where?
Best Crime Film
Best Visual Effects
SoCal Film Awards
Athens International Monthly Art Film Festival
Best Production Design
Creative Vision Film Festival
Best Short Film
What motivated you to become a filmmaker?
I always enjoyed watching various movies since I was a kid. Watching these films inspired me wanting to make something too. One time in grade school a classmate of mine showcased a short film he made in front of the whole class. I wanted to try it out too so I opened iMovie on my MacBook and played around with the built in camera shooting around the house, I fell in love with it. I thought that it is an amazing medium for me to convey my message and emotions to more people.
Which movies are your favorites? And why?
Movies that I like are able to make me feel something whenever I think of this film, it would resonate a certain emotion inside of me, or if there is something in the movie, can be a scene, a theme, or even just a line from one of the characters. Here are some of my favorite movies.
The Killer- John Woo, Pulp Fiction- Quentin Tarantino, The Departed- Martin Scorsese
What topics do you like to deal with in your work?
Things that we can relate in real life that may not be talked about a lot and present it in films. From addiction to wanting to be the very best, I like to talk about all kinds of topics in my films and use the characters in my film to deliver the messages. I also do not force a right answer onto my audience. I like to have them figure out their own answers and interpretations as they watch my film.
What genre do you like to shoot and why?
I really like to shoot thriller and action because they just get me in the zone every time. Shooting other genre is also exciting but there is just something special about thriller and action that gets me extra exhilarated when I am on set. Maybe it is also because they are two of my favorite genres to watch.
What project would you like to shoot one day, what would it be about?
I would like to shoot a genre hybrid between thriller and action which is also my favorite genres, taken place in urban area. The story would revolve around a few main characters going through a series of challenges, solve the mystery and defeat the ultimate villain.
How has COVID affected your film life?
COVID was rough especially when it comes to shooting film projects. Because of the quarantine I was not able to go out much to shoot any projects and get involved as I hoped. However, it also gave me the opportunity to reflect on myself as a filmmaker.
What do you do if you're not thinking about a movie? What are your hobbies?
I like to go out and hangout with my friends. Sometimes I would get inspirations for my films from hanging out with my friends as well. I also really enjoy playing badminton and tennis. While I am playing these sports I feel like they are amazing for stress relief and I can completely forget about work and zone in to the sport that I love.
What projects do you plan to shoot in the future?
I have a script that I adapted from the witches loaves by O' Henry which is in the works that I am aiming to shoot soon. It is a change of genre compared to my previous project which I am excited for. I am also exploring opportunities to shoot feature films, series or anything else possible.