June 4, 2013

Qiyamah is best Filipino film of 2012

Zanjoe Marudo and I were on top of a snow-covered mountain. The wind felt like Death's hands. Zanjoe fastened the straps of his parachute. He held my shoulders, looked into my eyes and asked, "Are you ready?" I hesitated to reply. "The only way to conquer your fear is to face it. Let's jump," he grabbed me and we descended a thousand feet. We were objects falling in slow motion like the climax of Zabriski Point. I thought I would die.

And then the phone rang. I woke up. It was my editor Arnel Barbarona. 

"Hello, Arbs. What's up?"

"Hi, Teng. Congratulations. YCC named Qiyamah best film. It also won best editing."

"Okay. Thanks." I hang up the phone and went back to sleep. A minute later, I awoke again. I checked online and it was true. The Young Critics Circle Film Desk has named Qiyamah the best Filipino film of 2012. It also won best editing for me and Arbi, and best sound and aural orchestration for Arbi and my musical scorer Raphael Pulgar.

My gratitude to everyone involved in the making of my third film Qiyamah. To my DoP Coicoi Nacario and AD Yam Palma, salamat for sticking with me through thick and thin. To Arnel Barbarona for foregoing sleep and sometimes bath to make sense of the images, and for providing a very atmospheric feel to the film. To Perry Dizon for his craftsmanship and keen sense of detail. To Jim Ofonda for creating miracles out of the production's meager budget. To John J. Barredo for making life easier for us. To Raphael Pulgar for sharing your wonderful gift of music. To Rhon De los Santos for ensuring that the film achieves a flow.

My deepest thanks also goes to Mayka Lintongan and son Toshi, and to Dax Alejandro for giving so much life to the film's characters. To my lucky charm Tetchie Agbayani for the generosity. She has been there for me since the very beginning. To Amor Ang Arcinas and hubby Jimmy, as well as daughter Kisses, thank you for the support. To Susan G. Dumama, Graham Dumama and their family for opening their doors to us. To the unsinkable Minah Bualan Lintongan and Ronnie Arap Jr. for being the best PR persons ever. To Mayor Jojo Guiani, City Administrator Atty. Cynthia Guiani-Sayadi and the entire City Government of Cotabato, my sincerest gratitude. The film would not have been completed without your help. To Benjie Abarca and the members of the Cotabato City School for Living Arts, to Kai Samson Matalam, Ephraim Josh Laud Nolasco and Haidie Zaman, this is your victory too. Last but not the least, to Musoy Hollite, my partner in crime for the last twelve years.