1st Sineng Pambansa film festival opens Friday in DavaoBy Marinel R. Cruz
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Award-winning director Brillante Mendoza and United States Ambassador to the Philippines Harry Thomas Jr. are the special guests at the 2012 Sineng Pambansa National Film Festival which opens tonight in Davao City.
The five-day festival is the flagship program of the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP). It will run until July 3.
A special screening of excerpts from Mendoza’s latest film, “Thy Womb,” a joint project of the FDCP and Mendoza’s CenterStage Productions, will highlight the opening night.
“Supporting local film festivals is as important as participating in international fetes … FDCP has helped me a lot in making ‘Thy Womb,’ I am just returning the favor,” Mendoza, who won the 2009 Cannes best director award for “Kinatay,” told the Inquirer. “I believe in Briccio (Santos, FDCP chair). He’s an action man.”
“Thy Womb,” shot on location in Tawi-Tawi, features internationally acclaimed actress Nora Aunor in the lead role.
According to executive director Teodoro Granados, the festival will screen 17 films selected from the National Film Competition, which the council initiated last year.
“(The contest) received about 120 entries consisting of full-length features, documentaries and animated shorts from all over the country. These finalists were given seed money to finish their films,” Granados said in a statement.
The films will be screened at SM City Davao, Abreeza, G-Mall and NCCC Mall, he added.
Also part of the four-day event is the inauguration of FDCP’s Davao Cinematheque, which was donated by the city government headed by Mayor Sarah Duterte.
Granados said that a commemorative statue of the late National Artist for Film Lino Brocka will be unveiled at the Cinematheque’s inauguration tonight.
The statue was designed and executed by Filipino sculptor Jonas Roces.
The feature films in the festival lineup are John Raymund Macahilas’ “Ang Mga Aswang,” Sigfreid Barros Sanchez’s “Ang Mga Kidnaper ni Ronnie Lazaro,” Ronny Poblacion’s “Beadworks,” Najib Alyhar Benito-Zacaria’s “Duwaya,” Peter Solis Nery’s “Gugma Sa Panahon Sang Bakunawa,” Fyrsed Alsad Alfad III’s “In Bangka Ha Ut Sin Duwa Sapah,” Jocelyn Banasan-Kapuno’s “Kanana Kanu,” Agustin Pagusara’s “Malan,” Gutierrez Mangansakan III’s “Qiyamah,” Ed Lejano’s “Qwerty,” and Orvil Bantayan’s “Tambara.”
The documentaries include Lester Babiera’s “Bulig,” Dominador Escasa Jr.’s “Jingle Lang ang Pahina,” Pepper Melencio’s “Illustrated By” and Dempster Samarista’s “Taguri: The Kites of Sulu.”
The short animated films are “Kalon” by Blecyrezza Piluden, and “Si Pagong at Si Matsing” by Carmen del Prado, Didy Evangelista and Mai Saporsantos.
The awarding of winners is on July 1.
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