3 Negrense Directors Debut Short Films In Cinemalaya 2020


Three budding Negrense filmmakers are debuting their masterpieces for exhibition in the Indie Nation Shorts section of the ongoing Cinemalaya 2020.

Featuring sceneries of northern Negros Occidental, these films include “Paon” (Bait), helmed by Seb Valdez; “Buding, Ang Babayi Nga Naglutaw,” by Mark Raymund Garcia; and “Ang Tumuluo”, by Aldrich Rosano.

Valdez and Garcia are both from Sagay City while Rosano hails from neighboring Cadiz City.

All screenings in this year’s edition of the Philippines’ biggest independent film festival are held online through Vimeo on Demand until August 16.

“We, from the cast and crew of ‘Buding’, are thankful to Cinemalaya for the opportunity to showcase our film in the national level,” said Garcia, a former news reporter, who also works as a consultant of the Sagay City Information and Tourism Office.

Garcia told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) on Thursday that they were glad that the film would be able to reach a wider audience through online streaming.

“We hope it would inspire more regional filmmakers to tell their story, no matter how local it is. With this opportunity, we have also expanded our network by meeting directors from other parts of the country,” the award-winning director added.

“Buding, Ang Babayi Nga Naglutaw” (Buding, The Woman Who Floated) is about three people who came to the police station to report a rather unusual incident: a woman was seen floating inside her seaside home.

The film was the winner of the 2019 Sine Negrense: Negros Island Film Festival and Cine Kasimanwa: Western Visayas Film Festival.

Receiving a combined 17 awards from two film festivals, “Buding” was also part of the 2020 Cinema Rehiyon, the largest gathering of regional filmmakers in the Philippines.

Valdez said being part of Cinemalaya 2020 means being able to tell one of the folktales of Sagay around the world through film.

“It has been an honor and a privilege for us. Some of us worked together for the first time but everybody gave their best for the project. I am beyond thankful to our team, my mother, my friends, and to Sagay City. Without them, this wouldn’t be possible,” he added.

“Paon”, the winning entry in Sagay City’s Margaha Film Festival held last February, is about the series of disappearances that occurred in Himogaan River supposedly because of a mermaid living beneath it.

The people feared this except for Andoy, a lonely fisherman living by the riverbank.

The film bagged six awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Cinematography, and Best Sound.

“Ang Tumuluo” (The Devotee) tells the story of Thea, an increasingly disillusioned member of the Church and her struggle with her lover and co-devotee Seva, set against the backdrop of the waning years of Marcos’ Martial Law.

Rosano’s film was one of the grantees of Cine Kasimanwa and the Department of Tourism 6 (Western Visayas) under the Western Visayas Film Grants Program last year.

The three Negrense films were selected for the Indie Nation Shorts section, along with 23 other films from around the country.

Two other films from Western Visayas – “Saliwat” by Jay Palmares and “Utwas” by Richard Salvadico and Arlie Sweet Sumagaysay – are part of the 10 films competing in the festival.
(Nanette Guadalquiver via NDB, photo by PNA)

(Source: Philippine News Agency)

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