I like Bacolod for a lot of reasons. The food. The hospitality. The awesome view from the plane when it touches down (it reminded me of my trip to Iowa in 2008 for my writing residency). And of course, the parties.
I was in Bacolod in mid February for the fourth edition of the Cinema Rehiyon Film Festival, a gathering of regions-based (regional if you may like) filmmakers and their supporters to showcase the past year's harvest of films from anywhere outside of Manila. For four days, we watched films and at night we discussed the films as we partied.
Among the highlights of the Festival was the official party which was held at the Art District in Lopues Mandalangan. One filmmaker quipped that it's the reason why filmmakers would always want to attend Cinema Rehiyon. "The Festival throws the best party," he said. "I think it gets equal preparation as the festival programming," I joked. The party is getting quite a reputation. And enjoyed it I did.
The party is just getting started.
Filmmaker Mes de Guzman and film programmer Philip Cheah.
Davao's pride Arnel Mardoquio, Ed Lejano of Manila, and Cebu's Bambi Beltran and Victor Villanueva.
Busong's Auraeus Solito poses with a friend.
Film director Peque Gallaga in a light moment with actress Cherie Gil.
Southern Exposure. Ivan Zaldarriaga, Arnel Barbarona, Adjani Arumpac, myself and Christian Linaban.
Thanks to Lawrence Fajardo and Arnel Barbarona for the photos.