By Ibarra C. Mateo
In what may be an unprecedented move, the organizers of the 2019 Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival appointed four Filipino directors as members of the jury for Cinemalaya and the Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC).
Dr. Andreas Ungerböck chairs the Cinemalaya jury for the full-length films in competition.
Born in 1960 in Thomasberg, Austria, Ungerböck has a degree in theatre, film, and journalism studies from the University of Vienna. He wrote his doctoral dissertation on the films of Rainer Werner Fassbinder.
In 1997, he directed a short documentary about Hong Kong cinema before the handover to China. The documentary was aired on German-French Arte Channel. He had curated several retrospectives of Asian Cinema including Hong Kong in Motion (1990, 1991, and 1995), Taipei Stories (1996), Korean Cinema (1998), Cinema Asia (2003), China Now (2004), and Asia 3D (2013). From 1994 to 2002, he was the catalogue editor for the Viennale Film Festival.
A freelance journalist since 1987, he was connected with publications such as 2006 Spike Lee (co-editor), 2009 Ang Lee (co-editor), 2012 Real America (co-editor), and Josef Hader, Filme und mehr (2017).
Currently, he is the co-publisher of ray, Austria’s second largest film magazine which deals with mainstream cinema and focuses on arthouse movies, TV series, DVD and blu-ray releases, film, books, and soundtracks.
Joining him is Korean director Park Kiyong.
After graduating from the Korean Academy of Film Arts (KAFA) in 1987, Park has worked on various film projects as producer and director. Films he produced include “To the Starry Island,” directed by Park Kwang-su in 1993, which was the first Korean co-production with Channel Four TV, a European company; and “Cinema on the Road,” directed by Jang Sun-woo in 1995, the Korean episode for BFI’s The Century of Cinema series.
In 2000, he also produced “Jang Sun-woo Variations,” a documentary about a controversial Korean director Jang Sun-Woo by a prominent British film critic Tony Rayns.
His films as a writer and director are: “Motel Cactus (1997)” and “Camels (2001),” which have won numerous awards including the New Currents Award at the Busan International Film Festival and the Grand Award at the Freiburg International Film Festival. His other films include: “Tears of Mokpo” (2019); “Noli Timere” (an official film of the 2018 Winter Paralympic Games); and “Old Love” (2017).
Another member of the jury is Filipino director Keith Sicat. He is the man behind notable cinematic works such as “Rigodon,” “Woman of the Ruins,” and “Himala Ngayon,” a documentary on the making of the Nora Aunor classic film directed by National Artist for Cinema Ishmael Bernal. His latest directorial work is “Alimuom,” a sci-fi film which won 3rd Best Picture at the ToFarm Film Festival and garnered two FAMAS nominations.
Working professionally as a documentary TV editor and producer in New York City early in his career, Sicat branched out to feature-length documentaries and narrative-feature films. Working in animation, he was the story consult for the first computer generated animated feature film “RPG: Metanoia” and headed the development team for the first Tagalog language Japanese anime co-production “Barangay 143” with TV Asahi.
Filipino Director Dwein Baltazar joins the Cinemalaya board. Stylist-turned-filmmaker Baltazar began her career in 2008, styling for independent films. In 2012, she made her directorial debut via “Mamay Umeng,” which was produced through a film grant from Cinema One Originals. It won the Best Picture at the 14th Jeonju International Film Festival.
She also directed two of the most celebrated films in 2018 – “Gusto Kita with All My Hypothalamus,” and “Oda Sa Wala,” both have won awards here and abroad. This year, Baltazar made waves in the digital platform with her 7-episode mini-series “Past, Present, Perfect.” Baltazar is currently writing her fourth film, to be produced by Black Sheep.
Completing the jury is Filipino Director Mes de Guzman. His film “Sa Kanto ng Ulap at Lupa (Of Skies and Earth)” won the Best Picture and Best Director in the Cinemanila 2011, while his film “Diablo” bagged the Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Asian Film (NETPAC Award) at the Cinemalaya 2012.
His latest Cinemalaya entry was “Ang Pamilyang Hindi Lumuluha,” starring actress Sharon Cuneta, in 2017.
His other films included: “Nora Aunor’s Ang Kwento ni Mabuti,” “Sitio,” and “The Road to Kalimugtong,” bagged the Altadis New Director’s Prize at the 2006 San Sebastian International Film Festival (Spain), two Best Picture awards from the Golden Screen Awards and the Festival De Cine De Los Pueblos Del Sur in Venezuela.
His short film “Batang Trapo” won the L’Etoile (Golden Star) Grand Prize for Short Film at the Festival International Du Film de Marrakech in Morocco, as well as Best Short Film at the Gawad Urian Awards, 1st Prize and Best Short Film for Children at the Gawad CCP for Film and Video, and the Ishmael Bernal Award for Young Cinema, and Cinemanila International Film Festival.
Film advocate Indu Shrikent, filmmakers Kan Lume, and Jerrold Tarog will be the NETPAC jury members.
Shrikent will be the chairperson of the NETPAC jury. Born in 1948 in New Delhi, India, she started her film journey in 1993 when she joined Cinemaya, The Asian Film Quarterly, a journal devoted to Asian cinema, where she became the deputy editor.
For over two decades Indu has written articles on films, filmmakers, and film festivals.
A founding members of the NETPAC Indian chapter, Indu Shrikent promoted Asian cinema extensively in India by organizing film appreciation courses, screenplay workshops, and holding film weeks, culminating with the launch of the Cinefan Festival on Asian Cinema in New Delhi in 1999. She was co-director of the Cinefan Film Festival since its inception in 1999 and contributed to the steady growth of the festival in both the number of films as well as audience.
In 2012, she became the festival director of Osian’s-Cinefan Film Festival of Asian and Arab Cinema.
Indu started the Hello Cinema film club in 2013 to promote “meaningful cinema.” She was invited as director program for organizing the 19th International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) in 2014.
Presently, Indu is working in Osianama Film Archive and Research Center. Her area of research is Asian Cinema.
Kan Lumé is a multi-awarded filmmaker who received his degree in film and television from Bond University in Australia, with a double major in Film.
Considered as one of the most prolific filmmakers in Singapore, he has taught film in film schools such as New York University Tisch Asia, School of Audio Engineering, Singapore Polytechnic, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, and Makassar SEA Screen Academy. He is an associate artist at Substation Home of the Arts, and has done commissioned works for the Embassy of Germany in Singapore, The National Gallery of Singapore, and the Asian Film Archive.
His debut feature film “The Art of Flirting” won Best ASEAN Feature at Malaysian Video Awards 2005. His 2nd film “Solos” bagged the Best Newcomer Award at Torino GLBT Film Festival. His 3rd film “Dreams from the Third World” received the MovieMax Award at Cinema Digital Seoul 2008. “Liberta” picked up special mention at Cinema Digital Seoul 2012 and the NETPAC Award at Tripoli Film Festival 2013.
“The Naked DJ” earned Kan his 2nd NETPAC award for Best Asian Film at Jogja-NETPAC Asian Film Festival 2014. His latest film “If This Is My Story” received the Best Actor at Jogja-NETPAC Asian Film Festival 2018.
Director Jerrold Tarog is known for his films such as “Heneral Luna” and its sequel “Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral.” His films for Cinemalaya include “Mangatyanan” (2009), the short film “Faculty” (2010), and “Sana Dati” (2013).
He is currently working on the superhero film “Darna,” produced by Star Cinema.
2019 CINEMALAYA PHOTOS