Brillante Mendoza's Tirador (international title: Slingshot)has been invited to next year's Forum section of the Berlin International FilmFestival. Produced by Centerstage Productions and RollingballEntertainment, this digital film shows the lives of small-time crooks operatingin Manila during Holy Week and the elections.
According to director Dante (as Brillante is often called),he shot the scenes of Tirador in Quiapo during the Holy Week. "Weinterviewed a lot of small-time thieves, sinabi nila mismo sa amin [ang mgaginagawa nila] at dinala niya kami mismo sa tinitirahan nila," he recalls. The47-year-old director shot this film in cinéma vérité style, similar tohis earlier work, Foster Child.
Ferdinand Lapuz informed PEP (Philippine EntertainmentPortal) that the invitation to Berlinale was sent by Forum directorChristoph Terhechte. Forum programmer Ansgar Vogt attended theninth edition of Cinemanila last month and brought the screener toBerlin. Christoph said "our selection committee was unanimously excitedabout the film, and we would love to show it at our festival."
The Berlinale—which will be held on February 7-17,2008—marks Tirador's fifth festival after its world premiere in TorontoInternational Film Festival this Friday, September 7. The film will also bescreened in the upcoming 26th Vancouver International Film Festival along with FosterChild, also helmed by Direk Dante.
It will then participate in the Pusan and JeonjuInternational Film Festivals to be held in Korea next year.
Tirador (Slingshot) is an intimate glimpse into the lives of criminals who have to dealwith police raids and other hardships on the gritty streets of Manila. The castmembers include Filipino actors whose previous films were screened inmajor film festivals: Jiro Manio (Magnifico, 2004 Berlin), KristoferKing (Ang Babae Sa Breakwater, 2004 Cannes' Director's Fortnight),Nathan Lopez (Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros, 2006 Berlin andSundance) and Coco Martin (Masahista, 2005 Toronto and Locarno).
Playing special roles in the movie are Jaclyn Jose, SimonIbarra, and Julio Diaz. Tirador also stars AngelaRuiz, Mark Dionisio, Harold Montano, Benjie Filomeno, ArmanReyes and introducing Nico Taverna.
Ralston Joel Jover wrote the script with Armando Bing Laoas creative consultant. Ralston also wrote Brillante's FosterChild and Manoro.