The Anita Linda-starrer Lola beat 13 other entries in the world competition of the 27th Miami International Film Festival. Directed by Brillante Mendoza, Lola received the Grand Jury Prize and bagged the $25,000 cash prize (approx. Php 1.125 million) awarded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. The awarding ceremony was held in Florida, U.S.A. last March 13.
The official website of the Miami IFF described Anita Linda as a "Philippine cinema icon." It summarized Lola as "the daunting story of two elderly women implicated in a robbery-homicide involving their respective grandsons: one the victim, the other the accused. Mendoza offers an earnest, compassionate study of forgiveness and redemption in the aftermath of an everyday killing in a poverty-stricken Filipino community."
The world competition of the Miami IFF celebrates the works of up-and-coming filmmakers from around the globe. Around 115 films from 45 countries were screened during the 10-day festival.
This is the second Best Film Award for Lola after it competed in the 66th Venice Film Festival last year. It also won the Best Film during the 6th Dubai International Film Festival where it won $50,000 (approximately Php 2.25 million).
Last week, Direk Brillante and producer Ferdinand Lapuz attended the Deauville Asia Film Festival in France. The festival gave homage to the Filipino director with a complete retrospective of his films namely Masahista, Tirador, Serbis, and Kinatay. Lola was chosen as the opening film of the said filmfest, courtesy of Swift Distribution. Other films such as Foster Child were screened courtesy of Ad Vitam while Kaleldo and Manoro were shown in France courtesy of Centerstage Productions.
From Deauville, they went to Fribourg, Switzerland where Lola again is in competition at the Fribourg International Film Festival.
Direk Brillante was busy attending press junkets for Lola in both France and Switzerland. Lola will open in France on May 5, distributed by Swift, and in April with Trigon as distributor in Switzerland .
Aside from Fribourg, Lola is currently in competition at the Las Palmas de Gran Canaria International Film Festival in Spain. It has also been invited to the Tribeca Film Festival in New York this May.
This weekend, Direk Brillante and the staff members of Centerstage Productions are flying to Hong Kong to attend the Asian Film Awards where Lola is nominated in the categories Best Film, Best Director and Best Editor (for Kats Serraon).
Jacky Atienza and the Film Development Council of the Philippines subsidized Direk Brillante's trip to Hong Kong as a reward for the nominations of the film.