Five Malaysian short films have been shortlisted among eight finalists in the Zee Tamil's first-ever short film competition - ZEE REEL.

The National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS), which functions as a supporting partner for the competition, said in a statement today that the shortlisted short films, and their directors, are:

1) Kaki Bangku (Malaysia) - Nanthakumaran Rajavijayan
2) Darklight (Singapore) - Vikneshwaran
3) February 14 (Singapore) - Kevin William
4) Paasam (Malaysia) - Vengatesh Ramachandran
5) Trending Pistah (Malaysia) - Lavinia Ann
6) Cubic Room (Malaysia - Kumaaran Vijayan (Wizzy)
7) Deepawali (Malaysia) - Aaron Nagaiah & Dinakaran Chandrasegaran
8) Suvay (Singapore) - Sunder Nagayah

Speaking to Astro Ulagam, Finas board member Denes Kumar, applauded the Malaysian films' pick, as it gives new hope to the local movie industry, by grooming young aspiring filmmakers.

ZEE REEL kicked off on Oct 28, and the judges on the panel include Malaysia's own director cum cinematographer Vimala Perumal, critically acclaimed Kollywood director AL Vijay, Tamil Dasan, the programming head of Zee Tamil & Deputy Business head of Zee Thirai, as well as Rajagopal K and Yahssir M, who are a Singapore-based director and writer cum director, respectively.

The eight shortlisted candidates will get to attend an exlusive workshop conducted by international filmmakers and panel of jury, and their entries will be showcased on the ZEE Tamil APAC channel, giving them a chance to showcase their work on a global television platform.

The top three winners of the competition will also be given an opportunity to work with international directors on their next project, subject to terms and conditions.

The competition ended on Dec 20, 2020, and winners will be announced on Jan 23, 2021, before the short films are aired on ZEE Tamil APAC in Feb 2021.

Watch snippets of the shortlisted Malaysian films here.