Art survives pandemic: 11 films in Abrenian Heritage fest

Scene from ‘Salidumay’

A total of 11 films, carrying the theme “culture in crisis, art fighting to survive COVID-19 impact,” are featured in the third edition of the ongoing Abrenian Heritage Film Festival 2021.

The festival had a virtual opening program last Sept. 6 and will run until Sept. 12.

According to its festival director, filmmaker Dexter Macaraeg, the movies will be made available to the public online for free via the festival’s own YouTube channel, Abrenian Heritage Film Festival.

Macaraeg emphasized that each film was “made during the COVID-19 pandemic; and [showed] how arts, creativity, and resilience were used in fighting the global health crisis.”

Originally intended for filmmakers based in Abra and the Cordilleras, the festival first opened its submissions to artists from Regions 1 and 2, as well as from Metro Manila, in 2020.

The 11 film finalists are the following: Ernani Antonio’s “Distansya,” Danni Ugali’s “Me Time,” Kenneth Louie Laurie Peralta’s “Artists Need Help Too,” Kristine Angel Cerva’s “Huling Yugto,” James Merquise’s “Pursuit,” Jeisther Timothy Galano’s “Dalluyon” (Waves);

Gabb Gantala’s “Naimbag nga Panagkasangaymo, Nang” (Happy Birthday, Mom), Geraldo Jumawan’s “Nagbuwa Nga Gugma” (Unfaithful Love), Edmar Delos Santos’ “Sam-it Ken Pait” (Bittersweet), Robert Llamoso’s “Room 1107 The Story of Rosalinda,” and Melver Ritz Gomez’s “Panaglaga” (Basket Weaving).

The festival’s opening film was Macaraeg’s “Salidumay.”

The screening of last year’s winning entry, Ann Michelle Mailed Espelimbergo’s “Ninlapu Ken Magsawi” from Abra Province, will culminate the event.

This year’s jury members are award-winning Filipino filmmakers and educators Emmanuel dela Cruz, Kevin Pison Piamonte, Kristoffer “Tops” Brugada, Martika Ramirez Escobar, and Arjanmar H. Rebeta.

For more information on the festival, visit its Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube accounts, or send an email to [email protected] and [email protected]

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