Ignacio de Loyola had P50 million budget; filmed in same location as Game of Thrones

Ignacio de Loyola, a film about St. Ignatius, has been graded A by the Cinema Evaluation Board.

The movie Ignacio de Loyola was shot in Navarra, Spain--one of the locations of the hit HBO show, Game of Thrones.

The Filipino-produced historical biopic depicts the life of St. Ignatius, the founder of the Society of Jesus or the Jesuits.

Paolo Dy, the movie's director, narrated, "While we were filming one of the battle scenes there, one of the castles in Navarra, I think they [Game of Thrones crew members] were having their casting there because they were gonna shoot two days after us.

"Some of the creative team passed by, looked at the locations."

What specific scene in Game of Thrones was shot in Navarra?

"I think it was a scene for the Dothraki scene in Dorne in the season six," said Direk Paolo during the film's press conference held recently at the KKK Restaurant, SM North Edsa.

“It was a nice little moment for us when the local people of Navarra came out and we saw on one side they were talking about Game of Thrones and the other side they were talking about Ignacio de Loyola."

P50 MILLION BUDGET. The film Ignacio de Loyola actually had a P50 million peso budget.

Did you know that it took five years for the producers to complete this project? It took the production design group headed by Leo Velasco Jr. around six months to make all the sets and props. More than 400 period costumes were created by costume designer Juvan Bermil and his team.

Ignacio de Loyola will finally be screened in Philippine cinemas nationwide starting July 27, 2016. It has been graded A by the Cinema Evaluation Board.

Andreas Munoz, who plays the main character Inigo, led the Spanish cast of the period film.

The movie tells the story of a brash, hot-headed soldier who lived in a time of political upheaval in Spain.

Set in the 1500s, it offers a modern and very human take on the story of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits.

The young Inigo went from living a life of brutal violence and debauchery, to becoming one of the greatest saints in the history of the Church. This film chronicles Inigo's torturous struggle to turn from darkness to light--a struggle that nearly destroyed him, but also gave him the key to a spiritual weapon that continues to save lives to this very day.

In his lifelong quest to become the heroic Knight of his fantasies, Ignacio stares death in the face again and again, having his leg shattered by a cannonball in battle; driven to near suicide by his inner demons; finding himself imprisoned, accused of being an illuminati; and finally finding his life in the hands of the Inquisition. Through it all, he would come to see the hand of God working in his life, shaping the self-obsessed sinner into the loyal and passionate soldier-saint.

The film also shows how Inigo wove the trials, errors, and lessons of his eventful life into the fabric of his masterpiece, the Spiritual Exercises. Combining clarity of thought with Ignacio’s own love of fantasy and imagination, the Exercises form a rigorous method of making one’s life decisions, and have guided and influenced countless seekers throughout history.

Ignacio de Loyola made history by being the very first Filipino film to ever be screened at the Salle della Filmoteca Vaticana where Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI watched movies.

The film chronicles the awe-inspiring conversion of Inigo Lopez de Loyola, a Basque nobleman and royal knight, who later became a priest and theologian, and founded the Society of Jesus and became its Father General.

Canonized in 1622, St. Ignatius is the patron saint of soldiers and Jesuits. The last film on his life was a Spanish production screened in 1949.

Ignacio de Loyola is produced by the Jesuit Communication Foundation (JesCom), the media arm of the Philippine Jesuit Province and it is co-presented by the Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific and One Meralco Foundation.

Direk Paolo feels blessed to be able to use a very special type of lens to help them achieve the specific look and feel of the film.

This movie is the first Filipino production to use the Cooke Anamorphic/i lenses. The one used by the filmmakers was one of only three complete sets that were in existence at the time of filming.

Direk Paolo pointed out that the Spanish crew members were amazed by the skill exhibited by the Director of Photography, Lee Briones Meily, especially since they shot in low-light conditions.

After shooting the film, the Spanish crew even described Lee Meily as "master" and "genius."

A big portion of the P50 million peso budget went to the production design and the costumes used.

“Prior to the shoot, during pre-prod, we already knew that is was going to be expensive in create...to build there in Spain. So there was an idea to build everything here and even the costumes.

"Actually, we were able to make 400 plus costumes and 5 tons worth of sets and props. So you can imagine the volume and the work went through with putting everything together,” said Ms. Pauline who was part of the art deparment.

She added, “My main task was mainly shipping the materials. Initially we thought we could actually leave some of the stuff there. We had props for the war scene and ideally we thought we could destroy these things. So on the way back it wouldn’t be a problem.”

However, they encountered some issues while dealing with the Spain Customs Authorities.

Pauline said that they had to explain that they did not have a big budget like other Hollywood productions.

They were eventually allowed to bring all the needed props but they incurred costs in shipping them all back to the Philippines.

(To read movie review of Ignacio de Loyola, read: MOVIE REVIEW: Ignacio de Loyola depicts struggle of St. Ignatius)






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