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Wide range of indie films in QC fest

By: - Reporter
/ 12:04 AM July 15, 2015
FILMMAKERS and fest organizers, led by festival board chair and Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte (fifth from left), at the launch

FILMMAKERS and fest organizers, led by festival board chair and Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte (fifth from left), at the launch

“Diversity” and “freshness of approach” were the key criteria for entires in this year’s QCinema International Film Festival, to be held from Oct. 22 to 31, festival director Ed Lejano announced recently.

The event, which carries the theme “Indie-genius: Next Wave of Philippine Cinema,” will likewise feature films that were shot outside Quezon City, unlike last year when this was a major component of the festival, Lejano pointed out during the press conference. “We did away with it so we would be able to showcase a wider range of films, whether it’s shot in Mindanao or in Mauban, Quezon.”

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Lejano explained: “We want a diverse crop of films, from the narratives to the documentaries. Even when it comes to genres, we don’t limit entries to one type. Rom-com or horror films can get in. We don’t discriminate. Of course, the films have to be fresh.”

Filmmaker Milo Sogueco, who is also a festival board member, added that “the local government proved to be a big help in securing shoot permits in the barangays. We were able to help filmmakers get access since we were supported by the councilors of the different districts.”

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“This year, we can help with the logistics, too,” concurred Lejano. “Whether the film will be shot on Maginhawa Street or Tomas Morato, the Cubao Expo or the Quezon City Circle.”

What made the QCinema fest different from the others, stressed Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte, was that it’s supported by the local government of Quezon City. “If the filmmakers need anything, our office writes to the concerned agencies. We also see to it that we send our team to accompany them to the venues.”

Belmonte, who is also the festival board chair, added that “we thought of organizing this event because we envision Quezon City as a potential tourist destination during festival season. All the celebrated festivals in the world are based in a city, like Berlin (Germany), Cannes (France), Busan (South Korea) and Venice (Italy).”

Full ownership

Out of 168 entries, eight feature films made it as finalists in the Circle Competition.

Each were given a production grant of P1 million. The filmmakers have full ownership of their films, Lejano reported.

This year’s lineup includes “Water Lemon” by Lemuel Lorca; “Kapatiran” by Pepe Diokno; “Iisa” by Chuck Gutierrez; “Patintero: Ang Alamat ni Meng Patalo” by Mihk Vergara; “Gayuma” by Cesar Hernando; “Until You Fall Asleep” by Prime Cruz; “Matangtubig” by Jet Leyco; and “Ang Huling Habagat” by Mario Cornejo.

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The documentary films that will be featured under the DoQC International Documentary competition are “Of Cats, Dogs, Farm Animals and Sashimi” by Perry Dizon; “The Crescent Rising” by Sheron Dayoc; “Audio Perpetua” by Universe Baldoza; “Traslacion: Ang Paglakad sa Altar ng Alanganin” by Will Fredo; and “Bingat” by Choy Pangilinan, Qubry Quesada, Joolia Demigillo and Abet Umil.

The docu films will receive P200,000 each and will compete with five other Asian features for the Pylon Award of the DoQC International Documentary Competition.

The QCinema is a project of the QC Film Development Commission, the first and only film commission in the country.

The indie fest will be held at the Trinoma and Gateway malls, as well at the University of the Philippines Film Center, said Lejano.

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TAGS: Cinemas, Ed Lejano, Entertainment, Indie Films, QCinema International Film Festival
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