A 21-year-old Indonesian will soon meet US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at the White House after his film on democracy won a competition held by the State Department.
‘I found out this morning that my short film has been named one of the six winners in this competition. I’m so grateful,’ Adhyat??mika, the writer and director of the video, said on Monday.
The film, ‘Democracy Is Yet to Learn,’ portrays a classroom of lawmakers, lawyers, farmers, policemen and students trying to answer a teacher’s question about the meaning of democracy.
It garnered enough online votes to defeat more than 70 local contenders to clinch a berth in the finals.
Only 18 contestants from six world regions made it to the finals in the Democracy Video Challenge, which saw more than 700 submissions from 86 countries.
Mika, as he likes to be called, said he made the movie because he was inspired by the political brouhaha surrounding the controversial Rp 6.7 trillion ($730 million) bailout of Bank Century.
Mika’s film defeated the other two finalists from Asia-Pacific region, Malaysia and Singapore.
The graduate from La Salle College of the Arts in Singapore said all six winners from six different regions had been invited to the White House in October.
‘We will present our movies in front of high-ranking officials, including the secretary of state, Mrs. Hillary Clinton,’ he said.
Mika said he would use the opportunity to give White House officials a quick description of the political situation in Indonesia, a developing country.
‘I want to show them that democracy is not a thing, it’s a process, and it’s not always pretty, especially because Indonesia is still learning,’ he said.
The annual State Department competition asked contestants to make a video based on the question ‘Democracy is …’? The contestants’ videos were uploaded on to YouTube and the winners were chosen based on the votes they earned.
Mika said his two-minute video was the first Indonesian film to make it into the online movie competition, which involved some prominent Hollywood figures, including an MTV director.
Mika said ‘Democracy Is Yet to Learn,’ which has a bit of satire about Indonesian politicians and lawmakers, had garnered more than 6,300 votes from all over the world.
‘The number of the voters is overwhelming for me. I never imagined that there were so many young people who still want to support Indonesian filmmakers as well as the democratic process in Indonesia,’ he said.