• SinagMaynila films continue to make waves here and abroad

    Director Lawrence Fajardo (center) leads the team behind his film ‘Imbisibol’ at the 28th Tokyo International Film Festival

    Director Lawrence Fajardo (center) leads the team behind his film ‘Imbisibol’ at the 28th Tokyo International Film Festival

    Born from the vision of Solar Entertainment Corp. CEO Wilson Tieng and renowned festival director Brillante Mendoza, independent film festival SinagMaynila aims to inspire, educate and enlighten Filipino movie audiences.

    On its first edition, five homegrown filmmakers, who closely collaborated with Tieng and Mendoza, produced feature films that presented social and cultural issues in the country today. After its successful run in March, the films have gone on to garner attention both in the country and abroad thanks to their compelling narrative.

    Winner of the Best Picture Award at SinagMaynila, Imbisibol by Lawrence Fajardo was invited for a screening at the Stockholm International Film Festival in Sweden on November 11.

    It also premiered at the 40thToronto International Film Festival (TIFF) at the Scotiabank Theatre in Toronto, Canada as it vied to win in the Contemporary World Cinema Programme in September. A screening was also held at the 28th Tokyo International Film Festivaland Focus on Asia Fukuoka International Film Festival in Japan.

    The film trains the spotlight on four undocumented Filipinos in Japan and their plight to escape deportation. The cast is led by JM De Guzman, Ces Quesada, Bernardo Bernardo, Allen Dizon and Ricky Davao.

    Imbisibol will have screenings in Iloilo from December 1 to 6, Davao from December 15 to 20, and Baguio on December 22 to 30.

    Another SinagMaynila film Balut Country by Paul Sta. Ana was invited for a screening at the All Lights India International Film Festival in India. It also premiered at the 28th Tokyo International Film Festival in October, which was also attended by the film’s main actor Rocco Nacino.

    Bambanti by Zig Dulay recently won best film at Festival International Du Film de Brussels. It has also been invited to compete in a series of film festivals in November at the Ourense International Film Festival in Spain, the Asian Panorama film competition of International Children’s Film Festival in India where actor Micko Laurente won The Golden Elephant Trophy for Best Actor, Festival Des 3 Continents at Nantes, France, and in the Ajyal Youth Film Festival in Doha Film Institute, Qatar.

    The film bagged the Best Film award in the recent Festival International du Film de Bruxelles. Bambanti looks at the prejudgment of the rich towards the poor as mother and son embark to uncover the truth behind a missing watch. It stars Alessandra de Rossi, MickoLaurente, Julio Diaz, ShamaineBuencamino, and Lui Manansala.

    Invited at the recent Minsk International Film Festival in Belarus was Swap by Remton Zuasola. This film is the only Asian film to be invited for screening at the Zabaltegi section of the 63rd San Sebastian International Film Festival in Spain in September.

    Swap is also poised for another international screening in Japan for the upcoming Tokyo Filmex. Dionne Monsanto, Matt Daclan and Mon Confiado star in this action-drama.

    The 2nd SinagMaynila Film Festival will run in May 2016.

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