(Cebu, Philippines--February 24, 2010) The International Academy of Film and Television (IAFT) is proud to congratulate its students and graduates on winning a total of nine out of twenty-two awards at the recent Sinulog Short Film and Documentary Competition.
These winning entries include ‘Faces of Sinulog’, ‘Taxi Driver’ and ‘Pagtuo (Faith)’ by Steve Eraña and Mickey Macachor, Mikio Makino Jr. and Janice Villarosa respectively. The competition was held in conjunction with the Sinulog@30 2010 Festival in Cebu City, and the award ceremony took place at the SM Cinema 1 on 30th January, 2010.
“This year’s competition saw a number of refreshing entries in their interpretation of ‘Sinulog’ that brought home the messages of hope and faith,” commented Ron Heri Tan, chairman of the film festival board of judges. “Once again, the bars in filmmaking in Cebu have been raised, thanks to these budding filmmakers.”
Bagging the most number of awards by a single submission was Steve Eraña and Mickey Macachor’s video documentary entitled ‘Faces of Sinulog’, a seven minutes long historic view of Sinulog from two different perspectives, narrated by Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña and Fr. Carmel Diola from the Archdiocese of Cebu.
In the Video Documentary category, all eight entries were nominated for the Best Video Documentary award, in which ‘Faces of Sinulog’ emerged tops. The documentary was further awarded best story, best in production design, best narration, best in sound engineering and musical scoring, while Eraña and Macachor were both presented with best director, amounting to six out of ten awards in the Documentary category.
“Our training in filmmaking taught us to avoid common pitfalls, as well as cut down the time needed for unnecessary editing through our shooting techniques, said Eraña.
Macachor, a recent graduate with a ‘Technical Achievement Award’ from IAFT under his belt added: “Formal training grounded us in the foundation for filmmaking, and that enabled us to explore and develop our own individual style.”
Commenting on their award for sound engineering, Macahor elaborated: “We have been taught on the critical importance of dialogue. With that constantly at the back of our minds, we made certain that our dialogue was crisp and intelligible, right from source through to output.”
Post-production took place on-campus, which not only provided the duo with the necessary state-of-art facilities, but also creative inputs and criticisms of mentors and peers that contributed to their success.
The annual competition saw a total of eleven entries in the Short Film category, out of which eight were nominated for the Best Short Film award. ‘Taxi Driver’ achieved the runner-up position for Best Film, and was also awarded Best Actor. Producer Mikio Makino Jr. is a recent graduate of IAFT, and was also a recipient of the ‘Technical Achievement Award’ upon graduation.
In the acting categories, Chuck Luat bested two other nominees for Best Actor in ‘Taxi Driver’, while Janice Villarosa’s stellar performance as the distraught mother of a boy with leukemia in ‘Pagtuo (Faith)’ earned her Best Actress award, beating three other nominees.
“I feel that one of the most important aspects of acting is learning how to approach a character or a script in various possible ways,” said Luat, who made his short film debut as a taxi driver who makes a turnaround after heading astray. “At IAFT, we are exposed to a multi-cultural environment with varying points of view and reactions to any given event. Coupled with good guidance from our mentors, my confidence has grown alongside my acting skills.”
“The theme of our film is something that’s very close to my heart, and I began to embody my character immediately after we developed her,” said Villarosa, who also directed the short film she played in. “Apart from being armed with the know-how, the discipline and focus that has been instilled in film school really paid off, as we juggled our time between shoots, post-production and our school workload,” the American-Filipino student added.
“We are grateful for the knowledge, support and nurturing that the mentors have showered us with,” Villarosa added. “We are honored for this recognition, and I now hope for the opportunity to showcase this short film to a wider audience beyond the shores of Cebu and the Philippines.”
The team behind ‘Pagtuo (Faith)’ has plans to continue editing the short film for participation in other film festivals.
“We are delighted with our students and graduates’ achievements at the competition” said Keith Sensing, Executive Director of IAFT. “This will indeed be a milestone for them, and we wish them the best as they continue on to compete at other international festivals.”
Villarosa is currently undergoing her Diploma Program in Filmmaking at IAFT, while Eraña, Macachor and Makino recently graduated in the same. Luat is currently an undergraduate at the school’s diploma program for acting.
About The Sinulog Festival
The Sinulog festival is one of the grandest and most colorful festivals in the Philippines with a very rich history. The main festival is held each year on the third Sunday of January in Cebu City to honor the Santo Niño, or the child Jesus, who used to be the patron saint of the whole province of Cebu (since in the Catholic faith Jesus is not a saint, but God). It is essentially a dance ritual which remembers the Filipino people’s pagan past and their acceptance of Christianity.
The festival features some the country’s most colorful displays of pomp and pageantry: participants garbed in bright-colored costumes dance to the rhythm of drums, trumpets, and native gongs. The streets are usually lined with vendors and pedestrians all wanting to witness the street-dancing. Smaller versions of the festival are also held in various parts of the province, also to celebrate and honor the Santo Niño. There is also a Sinulog sa Kabataan, which is performed by the youths of Cebu a week before the Grand Parade. For more information, please visit http://www.sinulog.ph
About The International Academy of Film and Television (IAFT)
Founded in 2003, the International Academy of Film and Television (IAFT) is a film school providing a new generation of aspiring filmmakers with a globally competitive education under the mentorship of leading industry professionals. The school offers each student hands-on experience using comprehensive equipment and facilities at a fraction of the cost of comparable institutions. IAFT offers short-term and long-term programs in Filmmaking, Sound Design and Acting that combine theory and application, and are designed for both new filmmakers as well as industry professionals looking to advance their skill set. The school also offers internships and opportunities to work on commercially-viable projects. Located in the heart of Asia on Mactan Island, Cebu, Philippines, IAFT’s tropical campus has facilities for filming and post-production as well as housing. IAFT’s mission is to nurture the creativity and individual talents of every student while cultivating today’s global filmmakers, and to build upon the entertainment traditions of Hollywood and other film capitals of the world.
The International Academy of Film and Television is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bigfoot Entertainment. For more information, please visit http://www.filmschool.ph