15 Trailer

The adventure of five fifteen year old boys in Singapore: estranged to every social reference, except for that of appearance and close friendships, they live their lives distant from their families and school, passing their days in a complete state of indolence in the search of experiences, at times even physically painful (tattoos, piercing, wounds). Their imaginary is completely colonized by MTV, cartoons, electronic jingles, publicity and comics. 

About The Film

Interpreted by street-kids that belong to the group they represent, this audacious and disturbing first work by the twenty-six year old Royston Tan explores an adolescent world, dramatically marked by the conflictual under-culture and complete addiction to video clip and videogame aesthetics. The existential suburban hardship, compared to the bright “western” and “English speaking” metropolis, is consumed through moving and desperate dialogues inscribed in a progression of disturbing sequences, similar to short sketches that slowly reconstruct the relational, psychological and family dynamics of the five boys. A sincere and lyrical film but at the same time irreverent, scandalous and extreme, an expression of Singapore cinema, unknown and emerging.

View website


  • FIPRESCI Award, Singapore Film Festival
  • Special Jury Prize, Deauville Film Festival
  • Best Director Award, Signis Special Mention award
  • Buenos Aires 6th International Film Festival
  • St. Paul International Film Festival 2005
  • New York Queer Experimental Media Festival 2005
  • Reel Affirmations Film Festival 2005
  • Sundance Film Festival 2004
  • Venice International Film Festival 2003
  • 16th Singapore International Film Festival
  • Vancouver International Film Festival 2003
  • Pusan International Film Festival 2003
  • Montreal World Film Festival 2003
  • London Film Festival 2003
  • Stockholm International Film Festival 2003
  • Gijon International Film Festival 2003
  • 10th Lyon Asian Film and Cultural Festival
  • Bangkok International Film Festival
  • Hong Kong International Film Festival
  • Sydney Film Festival
  • San Francisco International Film Festival
  • Asian American Film Festival
  • Los Angeles Asian Pacific FIlm Festival
  • WAVES Asian/American Film Festival (Iowa)
  • Outfest Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Film Festival

Directed by Royston Tan    Written by Royston Tan    Inspired by Theresa Chan    Executive Producers James Toh / Jacqueline Khoo / Lim Ching Leong
Produced by Eric Khoo / Tan Fong Cheng     Co-Producers Freddie Yeo / Mabelyn Ow
Starring Shaun Tan / Melvin Chen / Vynn Soh / Erick Chun / Melvin Lee    
Cinematography by Lim Ching Leong     Music by Yellow Box     Art Director Daniel Lim
Edited by Jeff Stevens / Nigel Fernandez / Darlene Lim / Azhar Ismon     Distributed by Shaw Organization
Release date 27 April 2003     Running time 96 minutes     Language Hokkien / Chinese