An interview with the creators of "Psychics"
From left to right: Dick Tso, Eddie Chan, Master Li Kui-ming, Roger Chow, Ellen Pun, Zevia Tong
Congratulations again on winning Best Documentary Feature with Psychics. The topic film explores the fascinating topic of psychics and mediums, their methods, and rituals in a thought-provoking way that is even shocking for the viewer at times! What sparked your interest in psychics, to begin with, and why was it important for you to make this documentary? What kind of research did you do before approaching the filming?
A: Master Li Kui-ming, the producer of this documentary, he is a very famous Feng-shui Master in Asia, he is well experienced and knowledgeable in this kind of topic as well as Chinese ancient culture. Before practicing as a Feng-shui Master, he was a filmmaker at an early age. So he gave us ideas and led us to make this film.
Master Li Kui-ming
Q: The film features mediums from all around the world- Japan, New York, Taiwan, Hong Kong... It must have been quite a challenge, but you did a great job. How would you describe working with producer Edward Li Kui-ming, and how did you take the project from conception to completion? How long did it take to bring the movie to life?
A: It took us more than 2 years to finish this film. We featured psychics in New York, Japan, Taiwan, and China, we were so lucky to get help from many local friends who helped us in research and productions, and of course, it’s a bit scary when meeting the psychics, because you’ll never know whether there were ghosts around or not. For example, the crew met troubles because of offending some dead ancestors, the filming was dramatically stopped in a China temple.
We were so lucky to work with Master Li Kui-ming, because he is an Āchārya of Esoteric Buddhism, Āchārya means teacher, so he was able to give us religious protections and guidance. Therefore, working with Mr. Li is kind of exciting but safe, and happy. From conception to completion, the production was so smooth and satisfactory, one of the reasons may be… it is a release of positive energy and believes, so we’ve got help from the world that we don’t know.
Director Ellen Pun
Q: The film includes some rare appearances by famous psychics, who don't normally accept interview requests. How did you convince them to participate?
A: San Jie, a very famous psychic in China, she told us that her master approved it, otherwise, she would not have accepted our request, and of course, Mr. Li’s reputation and networks help a lot. For psychics in Taiwan, they all believed that they were gifted to help people, so they were willing to be interviewed, but they didn’t ask for any money for the interviews, I think it’s a matter of their believes, that they are responsible to tell, or to advise people about the Neverworld that we don’t know, people after death can also come back to communicate with us through psychics, so, better behave well, someone is watching anyway!
Q: What's the most exciting thing you discovered during the shoot?
A: The most exciting thing is, during the production, we were helped as well as watched by someone we didn’t know. Some unknown energies were around, we couldn’t deny it, believe it or not!
Director Roger Chow
Q: Did you work with local crew members? What was the communication with them like?
A: Yes, we did seek help from local crew members, mainly in Taiwan and China. They were professional and helpful.
Q: You probably had hours and hours of footage to choose from, for the final edit. Was it hard to decide what to should be left out of the cut? How did you go about that?
A: It’s not that difficult to choose the right footage, maybe it’s a matter of the theme we sustained, we have had a clear and sound roadmap for the production, therefore, there wasn’t much "wasted" footage, moreover, the final edited version is like a sandwich, starts from Japan, ends with Japan, this special arrangement is to give people wishes and hopes, to make them feel contented after watching the documentary.
Iron Men in Temple
Q:What are some of the things you learned from the collaboration with multiple directors?
A: It is quite a good try, 4 different topics and different treatments can enrich the contents of the film, just like having a mini-buffet, the audiences can pick whatever they like. However, Producer Edward Li’s final decision and arrangement is very important, he is like a great tailor, he stitched 4 colorful pieces to become one final masterpiece.
Q: What message were you hoping to convey to the audience, and what was the reaction from audiences so far?
A: There is another world after our death that we know a little. By knowing more through psychics, we don’t have to be afraid of it, and we must learn cherishing what we are having now, we live with hopes. The wish-making section is helping us to gain positive energies, many audiences like that part most.
Master Li in his next film named Shave to Reborn
Q:What is next for you, and what is next for the film?
A: We are producing another documentary about religion, the Esoteric Buddhism, it is named “Shave to reborn”, 41 Hong Kong young people shaved their hair to become monks and nuns, they followed Master Li to learn Esoteric Buddhism, a lost religion in China for over a thousand years, starting from last century, it has been treasured again by Chinese. So, why did it disappear for centuries in China? Why do people want to learn it and bring it back to China from Japan? It is another interesting and amazing story to know, to know how it can change our lives.
Q:Is there anything else you wish to share with us?
A: After watching this documentary, it’ll bring you hope, it helps you to make a wish of your own at the end. As threatened by COVID, let’s learn more about death, learn more about the world after death, it is not scary at all, we can live positively, and cherish what you have had now.
Q:Where can our readers follow your work?
A: Hong Kong audiences can watch it in cinema, and for audiences all around the world, they can watch it via VOD platform, for the trailer, they can go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RX0tHD76eqI
Psychics - Trailer