Brillante Mendoza says his new project, Prey, is not an entry in the Venice Film Fest: "There’s no truth to that. There’s no formal announcement yet."

According to director Brillante Mendoza, what was published in a broadsheet column was mere speculation. "It’s three months before the festival at wala pang nakakakita sa film; there’s no finished product yet, so wala pang dapat pinag-uusapan about... [pagiging entry ng Prey] sa Venice [Film Fest]," he told PEP in a recent interview.



Muling binigyang-linaw ng award-winning filmmaker, Brillante Mendoza, ang napabalitang diumano’y pagkapasok bilang entry ng kanyang latest indie film, tentatively titled Prey, sa Venice International Film Festival, sa Italy.

"There’s no truth to that. There’s no formal announcement yet," sabi ni Direk Brillante sa PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal), kamakailan.

Nakausap ng PEP ang internationally-acclaimed director, ugnay sa nais nitong ipanawagan at hingan ng suporta na bagong advocacy nila ni Ms. Gina Lopez, ng ABS-CBN, na may kinalaman sa mining activities sa Palawan.

Pero hindi maiiwasang mabanggit din ang tungkol sa bagong indie project ni Mendoza na kasalukuyan pa ring nasa post-production.

MERE SPECULATION. Brillante Mendoza told PEP that what was published in a broadsheet column was mere speculation.

"It’s three months before the festival at wala pang nakakakita sa film; there’s no finished product yet, so wala pang dapat pinag-uusapan about... [pagiging entry ng Prey] sa Venice," sabi pa rin ni Brillante.

Ang naturang Italy-based festival, na isa sa A-List Film Festivals sa buong mundo, which is on its 68th year, ay nakatakdang ganapin sa mga petsang August 31 hanggang September 10, 2011.

"I still have to discuss with my producer (Didier Costet) on what is the next move, when the film is finished.

"Kasi parang ang hirap magsabi lang na, ’O, ipadala natin sa ano...’ puro mga speculations.

"As far as I’m concerned, not until I see the film, that’s the only time that I can decide na, ’O, ito, hahabol siguro ito... sa ganito," sabi pa ni Brillante.

Huling napasali ang pelikula ni Brillante Mendoza, sa Venice Film Festival (Main Competition section) noong 2009. Ito ay ang highly-acclaimed film na Lola, starring veteran actresses Anita Linda and Rustica Carpio.

Early on, may speculations din na nilayon ni Brillante Mendoza at ng kanyang producer na isali ang Prey sa natapos na Cannes International Film Festival, noong Mayo 15-24, 2011.

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Maituturing na ring beterano sa pagsali sa prestihiyosong Cannes International Filmfest si Brillante Mendoza, having fielded three of his films which were successfully chosen, in 2007 (Foster Child), for the Director’s Fortnight; and in 2008 (Serbis) and 2009 (Kinatay) as Main Competition entries. At alam ng lahat na si Brillante Mendoza ang nanalong Cannes Filmfest Best Director, noong 2009, para sa Kinatay.

This time, with Prey, sabi ni Brillante, "Hindi ako nag-attempt because, I know, nu’ng tinanong ko dito, hindi nila kayang tapusin [ang post-production].

"Because ang [new] film ko is more than three hours ang running time. It’s a three-and-a-half-hour film," ang sabi ni Direk Brillante.

"Unlike yung mga previous films ko, 90 minutes, 100 minutes (roughly one-and-a-half-hour film); ito (Prey), 180 minutes (running time), so parang dalawang pelikula ’yan. We tried our best to finish the film, pero hindi talaga namin siya natapos.

"Normally, in all my previous films, I’d send a rough copy [for Cannes] because I can finish them on time.

"When I sent Serbis to them (Cannes Filmfest screening committee), it was a rough cut, wala pa siyang music at sound mix, pero dito kasi gagawin ’yon. Before I sent it to Cannes, tinanong ko na muna dito (post-house) kung kaya bang tapusin in a month’s time, ang sabi ’oo’, so may assurance ako from the post-house. Pag sa Europe kasi, hindi ko alam kung matatapos o hindi.

"Same with Kinatay. We sent a rough copy because we had more time to finish the film’s post-production.

"This time, with Prey, it’s different. Nu’ng nagpunta ako sa Paris," banggit din ni Direk Brillante, "because we were hoping they could help us, hindi rin siya natapos.

"So, sabi ko, wag na tayong mag-attempt, at ayoko ding mangarag at ma-harass dahil doon; na makapasok [sa Cannes] at magsa-suffer din yung quality ng film.

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"Let’s do it with our own pacing," sabi rin ni Brillante.

At press time, nasa post-production pa rin nga ang Prey, na kasalukuyang ine-edit ni Kats Serraon at nilalapatan ng musika ni Teresa Barrozo, kapwa premyadong katuwang ni Brillante Mendoza sa mga nauna niyang obrang Serbis at Kinatay.

HAPPY FOR AURAEUS SOLITO’s BUSONG. Sa pagkakapasok, bilang entry ng Busong (Fate) ni Auraeus Solito sa Cannes Filmfest 2011 Directors’ Fortnight section, "Well, I was happy for him," sabi ni Direk Brillante.

Busong starrs Alessandra de Rossi, among a non-mainstream cast. Entry din ang indie film sa gaganaping Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Filmfest, sa CCP, on July 15-24, 2011.

Brillante said he congratulated Auraeus: "At least, meron pang ibang Filipino filmmakers who also make it to Cannes.

"Kasi, di ba, may mga countries in Asia and other parts of the world, na iisa o dalawang filmmakers lang ang nakikilala, internationally? E, tayo [sa Pilipinas], marami-rami na rin."

To date, kabilang sina Brillante Mendoza at Auraeus Solito sa mga naunang filmmakers na naitanghal din ang mga nagawang pelikula, sa Cannes Filmfest (Directors’ Fornight section); tulad nina Lino Brocka (Insiang, Bona), Mike de Leon (Kisapmata), at Mario O’Hara (Babae Sa Breakwater).

Sa Main Competition ng Cannes, sina Brocka (Jaguar, Bayan Ko: Kapit Sa Patalim) at Brillante Mendoza (Serbis, Kinatay) ang kabilang sa mga direktor na pinalad mapasali.

Pero marami pa rin ang mga Pilipinong indie film directors, na ang mga obra ay napabilang sa selection (pang-competition man, o pang-exhibition) sa iba pang prestihiyosong film festivals sa buong mundo, tulad ng Venice (Italy), Berlin (Germany) at Cairo (Egypt).

They include works by Lav Diaz (Melancholia, in Venice), Pepe Diokno (Enkwentro, in Venice), Adolf Alix, Jr. (Manila, in Cannes), Raya Martin (La Independencia, in Cannes), among others; at ng mga so-called mainstream directors, like Maryo J. delos Reyes (Magnifico, in Berlin), Carlitos Siguion-Reyna (Ang Lalake Sa Buhay Ni Selya, in Berlin), Joel Lamangan (The Flor Contemplacion Story, in Cairo), Jose Javier Reyes (Live Show, in Berlin), among others.

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INTERNATIONAL STANDARD. Tungkol pa rin sa latest film niya, Brillante Mendoza shared some details.

Decidedly, ang title nito ay Prey which the director liked, although they had to use the title Bitag while filming.

"Hindi ito real time, with it’s three-hour length," ani Brillante.

"Pero independent production pa rin dahil hindi kami mainstream. And, in terms of the way we did it, kahit independent yung production, the way we run the production was based on an international level; lahat yun, sa pagkain, sa bayad, accommodation, transportation," sambit pa ng award-winning director.


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