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America Is Stuck With the Death Penalty for (At Least) a Generation

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With Justice Anthony Kennedy's retirement, the national fight to abolish capital punishment will have to go local.
When the Supreme Court revived capital punishment in 1976, just four years after de facto abolishing it, the justices effectively took ownership of the American death penalty and all its outcomes. They have spent the decades since then setting its legal and constitutional parameters, supervising its general implementation, sanctioning its use in specific cases, and brushing aside concerns about its many flaws.
That unusual role in the American legal system is about to change. With Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement from the court this summer, the Supreme Court will lose a heterodox jurist whose willingness to cross ideological divides made him the deciding factor in many legal battles. In cases involving the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment, his judgment often meant the difference between life and death for hundreds of death-row pr…

Singapore Appoints ‘Apprentice’ for Foreign-Language Oscar Run

Apprentice poster
Boo Junfeng’s “Apprentice” has been selected as Singapore’s contender for the foreign-language Academy Awards competition.

The film, about a young man who is asked to perhaps take over as the country’s state executioner, had its world premiere at the Cannes film festival May this year, appearing in the Un Certain Regard section. 

It had its commercial release in Singapore through Clover Films on June 30.

The selection was made by the Singapore Film Commission (SFC), which is part of the Media Development Authority of Singapore. 

“Apprentice explores complex and sensitive themes while preserving an honest insight to the characters’ internal conflict and emotions. We believe the film will resonate with international audiences following its successful world premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival,” said SFC director Joachim Ng.

The film is set for an extensive festival run with other stops including Toronto, Busan, and London. International sales, handled by France’s Luxbox, have included deals with Film Movement for North America, Arrow for the U.K., and Version Originale Condor for France.

Production was structured as a five way co-production between Singapore, Germany, France, Hong Kong and Qatar. It was produced by Akanga Film Asia, Peanut Pictures and Zhao Wei Films.

Source: Variety, Patrick Frater, September 15, 2016

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