NILALANG, a 2015 Filipino-Japanese horror movie that starred Cesar Montano, Meg Imperial, Yam Concepcion and the provocative Japanese adult film star Maria Ozawa has been selected to play in the three-day Los Angeles Philippine International Film Festival (LAPIFF) on October 7, 8 and 9, 2016.
Nilalang’s director Pedring Lopez who was present during the LAPIFF press conference in Carson City last week where the initial selection of entries to the film festival were announced, expressed elation and pride for the selection of his movie.
If things work out well, Lopez said, his producer maybe able to bring Maria Ozawa to Los Angeles to grace the affair.
Winston Emano, chair of LAPIFF screening committee, disclosed that around 2,000 films were submitted to the body —which was able to cut it down to 150 films.
“We put in tireless hours in screening every film that was available,” Emano said, explaining though that movies that did not fit the film festival’s basic criteria — “produced or made and about the Filipino diaspora” — were instantly disqualified.
Among the films that will make it to the film festival: Honor Thy Father, starring John Lloyd Cruz, Meryll Soriano and Tirso Cruz III; Iadya Mo Kami, starring Eddie Garcia, Allen Dizon, Aiko Melendez, Diana Zubiri, Ricky Davao and Elora Espano; Star na si Van Damme Stallano where newbies Paolo Pingol and Jadford Dilanco were introduced; End of Fall which written and directed by Joselito Seldera, an instructor at University of Southern California’s school of cinematic art.
In the short films category, seven creations made it to the LAPIFF’s initial list, namely: Got it Maid by Shawn Semana of University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Theater; Manang by Vince Serrano; Sukat; Wawa; Julie by Clanch Dayve Belleza; They Call Us Maids; and Sejour by Christian Lat.
The LAPIFF founders, led by Filipino-American actor Abe Pagtama, hope to establish the Philippine international film festival as a yearly event in Los Angeles.
It is not the first time that such an event was attempted in the city. There has been at least a couple of Filipino film festivals held in Los Angeles in the past but none was able to become annual affairs. The public will get to enjoy the Filipino film festival on October 7, 8 and 9 at Cinemark Carson. Screening will start from 10 a.m. to 12 midnight.
Members of the LAPIFF committee include noted indie filmmaker Janice Villarosa, Marie Jamora, Oliver Carnay, Walter Boholst, David Maquiling and Anthony Buncio.
LAPIFF will give awards for best feature picture, best short film, best documentary, best animation, best director, best actor, best actress and best audience film.
LAPIFF, a non-profit organization, is dedicated to “work for the advancement, development and showcasing Filipino filmmakers and artists around the world.
It accepted films and other media works that were made by Filipinos (or with Filipino ancestry but are now of different nationality) and/or about Filipinos.
Subtitles were used for films spoken in Filipino and other languages.