By Seymour Barros Sanchez
THE Department of Science and Technology-Science Education Institute will award the winners of the third Indie-Siyensya science filmmaking competition tomorrow at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City.
The winners were chosen by Indie-Siyensya’s distinguished board of judges from the final entries submitted in the Youth and Open categories, with the themes “What My Community Needs Now” and “What My Country Needs Now,” respectively.
Three films from each category will receive trophies and cash prizes: PhP100,000 for the Best Film, PhP50,000 for the second prize and PhP25,000 for the third prize. The competition’s main organizer will also give a special Viewer’s Choice Award, with a cash prize of PhP10,000 pesos, to the film with the most number of votes from the Indie-Siyensya audience.
Judging this year’s Indie-Siyensya are advocacy filmmaker, educator and Beyond Deadlines entertainment writer Seymour Sanchez from the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde Digital Filmmaking program and Far Eastern University Department of Communication; Prof. Patrick Campos, director of the University of the Philippines Film Institute; Prof. Garry Jay Montemayor, chair of the Department of Science Communication, College of Development Communication, UP Los Baños; Dr. Mudjekeewis “Mudjie” Santos, father and founder of the Genetic Fingerprinting Laboratory under the Department of Agriculture-National Fisheries Research and Development Institute; and astrophysicist and data scientist Dr. Reinabelle “Reina” Reyes, who became known as “the Filipina who proved Einstein right” with her work on his Theory of Relativity.
The judges screened more than 300 film concept proposals for short documentaries that capture science as it works to answer the needs of communities and the country. The criteria for judging are Scientific Content and Adherence to the Theme (50% for the Youth category and 40% for the Open category), Execution of Idea (30% for both categories), and Film Techniques (20% for Youth and 30% for Open).
“We were surprised by the number of individuals and groups interested in joining this year’s Indie-Siyensya. We’re hopeful that projects like this will encourage more students to choose science courses,” DOST-SEI Director Dr. Josette Biyo shared.
Indie-Siyensya partnered with the Film Development Council of the Philippines to hold a free science communication and film workshop last July 6 at the Cinematheque Centre Manila. The workshop, which aims to help equip participants with the skills needed to create visually appealing and credible science films, was facilitated by Montemayor, 2017 Breakthrough Junior Challenge Challenge winner Hillary Diane Andales and director of photography Joshua Reyles.
Aside from organizing Indie-Siyensya, DOST-SEI primarily spearheads the country’s premier science scholarship programs and conducts teacher training and science promotion programs for the youth.