Bakal Boys (international title: Children Metal Divers) recently bagged the Chiaputti Award in the 27th Torino Film Festival in Italy. It comes with a cash prize of Euro 5,000 (approximately Php351,000).
The Chiaputti Award is given to the film that best portrays the "World of Work." Comics artist and Italian living legend, Chiaputti has been giving this award for the last 12 years. According to a PEP source, Chiaputti is very happy that this year, the winner dealt with the global problem of child labor.
Bakal Boys competed against 15 other films in the Torino Film Fest. It stars Gina Pareño, Simon Ibarra and real-life bakal boys Meljon Guinto, Edgar Olano Jr. and Vincent Olano. According to the official website of the Torino Film Fest, they aim to "discover innovative talents that express the best contemporary trends of international independent cinema."
Director Ralston Jover and executive producer Bessie Badilla were in Torino and accepted the trophy, which reportedly weighs four kilos.
Direk Ralston and Bessie also attended the 50th Thessaloniki International Film Festival in Greece where the film was given a Special Mention for its screenplay and subject. Filipino director Lav Diaz was part of the international jury of the Thessaloniki IFF.
Last October, Bakal Boys also won a Special Mention in the Vancouver International Film Festival. Direk Ralston and Bessie went to Stockholm and then proceeded to London for the Asia Film House and then to Estonia for the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival.
Bakal Boys was written by Ralston Jover and Henry Burgos. It was produced by Bessie Badilla and Albert Almendralejo. It is represented locally and internationally by Ignatius Film Canada's Ferdinand Lapuz and Antonio de Guzman Jr.