Paolo Ballesteros earned another international recognition for his indie film Die Beautiful.
The Eat Bulaga host bagged the Special Jury Award for Acting at the 21st Kerala International Film Festival held in India.
Paolo was unable to accept the award but producer Ferdy Lapuz accepted it on his behalf.
This film fest, which took place from December 9-16, also featured three other Filipino films.
Eduardo Roy Jr.’s Pamilya Ordinaryo and Derick Cabrido’s Tuos were included in the World Cinema section.
Quick Change, another movie helmed by Direk Eduardo, was part of the Gender Bender program focusing on films that propagate emotional, social, cultural, and political situations of the LGBT community.
In his Instagram account, Paolo posted:
"Woooooh!!! Just in! Good news mga Dabarkads! SPECIAL JURY AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCE!!! 21st International Film Festival of Kerala, India. Maraming Salamat!!!!"
Directed by Jun Lana, Die Beautiful is one of the official entries of the 2016 Metro Manila Film Festival.
This MMFF 2016 entry will open in Philippine cinemas starting December 25, 2016.
In the official website of the Kerala IFF, Die Beautiful was described as follows:
"A transgender woman’s corpse is stolen by her friends to honor her wish to be presented as a different celebrity on each night of her wake. A poignant character study celebrating individuality.
"Trisha, a Filipino transgender woman suddenly dies while being crowned in a beauty pageant. Her last wish is to be presented as a different celebrity on each night of her wake, but her conservative father wants to bury her as a man.
Trisha’s friends are left with no choice but to steal her body and hold the wake in a secret location. And as Trisha is transformed to look like different celebrities, they also look back at the colorful and extraordinary life that she has led — from being a son, a sister, a mother, a friend, a lover, a wife and ultimately, a queen."
In his Director's Note, Jun Lana wrote:
"I have always found it ironic that in most cases, to appreciate a life, we have to look at it in the context of death. Just as Trisha challenged conventions during her life, I wanted to show how she continued to do so even in death. It’s a life filled with as much joy and laughter as it was peppered with pain and sorrow, but in the end, I hope audiences will see that despite many different circumstances, Trisha is really not different from the rest of us — an individual in search of happiness — perhaps just a bit more extraordinary and a shade more beautiful."
(To stay updated about the latest news about the MMFF, visit http://www.pep.ph/guide/mmff)