Si Dan Villegas ay isa sa mga masusuwerteng baguhang filmmakers na binibigyan ng break ng Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival 2010. Pasok as official entry sa Full Length Category ang film debut niyang pinamagatang Mayohan.
Ngayong February 5 and 6 pa lang ang casting auditions ng Cinemalaya 2010 sa CCP, kung kaya’t as of press time, wala pang cast ang Mayohan, at sa auditions pa lamang kukuha si Direk Dan at ang kanyang production staff.
DAN’S BACKGROUND. Graduate ng kursong Interdisciplinary Studies (Communications and Creative Writing Track) mula sa Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) si Direk Dan. Sa pagkilala sa kanyang propesyon, pinarangalan siya ng Xtreme Fellowship Award, gayundin ang Loyola School Awards for the Arts, particular na ang Screen Arts Category noong 2004.
Noong 2006 he was named Best Cinematographer para sa short film na Genesis para sa ADMU Video Open. Lumahok rin siya sa music videos at gumawa ng maraming corporate AVP’s.
Siya rin ang Lighting Director ng Hush Hush, isang defunct show ng TV5 at ang Director of Photography ng Project Runway Philippines Season 2, isang sikat na reality modeling competition sa bansa.
Maliban sa kanyang mga nagawang short films, music videos at corporate videos, marami na rin siyang nagawang makabuluhang full-length feature films tulad ng Numbalikdiwa (Maricel Soriano), Padyak (Jay Aquitania, Baron Geisler, etc), Sabungero (Joel Torre), and Still Life (Glaiza de Castro).
Sa Still Life nakamit ni Dan ang kanyang maraming nominasyon for Best Cinematography category sa Star Awards for Movies ng Philippine Movie Press Club, Inc., FAMAS Awards, Golden Screen Awards ng Entertainment Press Society, Young Critics Circle Awards, at ang prestihiyosong Gawad Urian.
Ang trabaho niya sa Huling Pasada (Agot Isidro, Neil Ryan Sese) ay na-nominate rin sa 2009 Gawad Urian, at kunsaan niya rin nakuha ang Best Cinematography award sa 2008 Cinemalaya Film Festival.
THE INSPIRATION BEHIND MAYOHAN. Ayon sa panayam ng PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) kay Direk Dan, na-in love agad siya sa kuwento ng Infanta festivities na ito, una pa lamang niyang narinig.
"Ang concept for Mayohan ay nagsimula pa noong June 2009, nang sinabi ng kaibigan ko, si Vice Mayor RR Velasco na may isang event that happens every May in Infanta, Quezon.
"Na-touch ako sa kagandahan ng event, and I remember telling him, ’Pare, magandang pelikula ’yan.’"
At isang buwan nga daw mula ng pag-uusap na ’yon, kuwento pa rin ni Direk Dan, "Nag-usap kami ng kaibigan ko at colleague na si Paul Sta. Ana (director niya sa Huling Pasada).
"We were both working for a reality show at the time, and we talked about a couple of concepts for the upcoming Cinemalaya submission.
"Tinanong niya ako kung what type of film ang gusto kong gawin, and I said, a nice love story. Ayun, pumayag siyang maging scriptwriter ng film.
"Then, I remembered the Mayohan and pitched it to Paul. After a couple of brainstorms we went to Infanta, Quezon to research.
"Noong dumating na kami doon, we only knew two things: One, we want to make a love story, and two, we want to show the rich beauty of our prospective setting. Sa mga interviews namin, we found the script that is our Mayohan today.
"Story of people in between tradition and change, love and decadence; set in the backdrop of the picturesque landscape of Infanta, Quezon and the event of the Tapusan," mahabang kuwento ni Direk sa history ng pagkaka-conceptualize ng pelikula.
SYNOPSIS. Mahoyan is set in Infanta, Quezon, where locals turn each of the 31 days of May into a charming honor not only to celebrate good harvest in their agricultural area, but also to pay tribute to the virginal virtues of Mary, mother of Christ. Amidst the festivities, Nińo, a 15-year-old young outsider becomes involved in the preparation that the Mayohan’s final event, the Pasayaw, entails.
As this orphaned teenager comes of age and deals with the loss of his parents, his attention shifts to Lilibeth, a 19-year-old provincial lass, the Pasayaw’s elected president, who, herself gets lost in the hustle and bustle that transpire before May ends. As the event underscores gender lines, generation differences, and class issues, the two become entangled in an unlikely partnership, each in their own search for growth and acceptance.
Ang staff and crew ng Mayohan ay ang sumusunod: Proponent Director/ Cinematographer: Dan Villegas, Proponent Writer: Paul Sta. Ana, Producers: Aloy Adlawan and Tetz Salvador, Line Producer: Ryan Nikolai Dino, Associate Director: Allan Forte, Production Designer: Bianca Gonzales-Dadivas, Field Sound Recordist: Mark Locsin, Editor/ Colorist: Jesson Yap, Sound Engineer: Joey Santos, Musical Scorer: Emerzon Texon
Ipapalabas ang Mayohan sa Cinemalaya 2010 sa Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) theatres sa Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City sa July 2010.