Where will screen legend Eddie Garcia display his latest best actor trophy—this time for “Bwakaw,” from the Asia-Pacific Film Festival?
Ever the gentleman, Garcia told the Philippine Daily Inquirer: “This one goes to the den in my house, where I also keep my trophies from shooting competitions. I’ve donated my earlier awards to Mowelfund Museum. When I have free time, I’ll visit Mowelfund Museum again to hand over the Asia-Pacific trophy, along with the Inquirer award I got recently.”
Garcia was one of the honorees in the 3rd Inquirer Indie Bravo! Tribute held on Dec. 10. (Anita Linda, another Indie Bravo! honoree and Asia-Pacific best actress awardee for last year’s “Lola,” has turned over her acting trophies to Mowelfund Museum, too.)
Garcia considers these two latest citations as welcome additions to his ever-growing treasure trove, which, according to an imdb.com tally, consists of 34 trophies to date.
Earlier this year, he won best actor in the Cinemalaya fest, also for Jun Robles Lana’s “Bwakaw.”
Garcia is the only local actor elevated to the Famas Hall of Fame for best supporting actor, actor and director.
As comedian Brod Pete quipped on his Facebook account: “Manoy is the man.” (A Bicolano, Garcia’s nickname in the biz is “Manoy.”)
Equivalent sentiments were echoed in the comments section of a previous story on Garcia posted on Inquirer.net: That he is among the best actors, ever, in Philippine cinema.
It was no surprise, then, that when he won in the As-Pac fest (held at the Venetian Macao Resort Hotel in Macau on Saturday), he was given a standing ovation by the mostly foreign audience.
“They stood up as they clapped,” Garcia confirmed in a phone interview with the Inquirer a day after the event.
“I think the only Filipino in the audience was my wife,” he said.
He noted that the awards show was “fast-paced and organized… unlike local awards shows that take so long because of the commercials inserted for TV airing.”
Among the presenters in the best actor category was veteran Hong Kong character actor Eric Tsang—one of the organizers, Garcia said.
After his acceptance speech, he was led to a room where he was met by Chinese media representatives. “There were a lot of photographers and reporters,” he said, “but it was very orderly.”
A welcome dinner was held on Friday for the delegates. “One of the guests was (action superstar) Jackie Chan, who was surrounded by bodyguards,” Garcia said.
On their way back to the Conrad Macao (across the street), where they were billeted, the actor and his wife, Lilibeth, ran into Filipino hotel employees at the Venetian lobby. “They congratulated me,” Garcia said. “They looked happy for me.”
The country’s entry to the Oscar best foreign language film category, “Bwakaw” has received glowing reviews from Western critics.
Film Comment named “Bwakaw” as “one of the Top 10 unreleased films of 2012.” Film Comment’s list is an annual survey conducted by the Film Society of the Lincoln Center, with the most influential film critics, journalists and editors in the United States as respondents.