Imee Mar­cos ex­per­i­ments be­yond movie mak­ing

The Manila Times - - SHOW TIME - ED UY

DUR­ING her first foray in film as di­rec­tor gen­eral of the de­funct Ex­per­i­men­tal Cinema of the Philip­pines (ECP), Imee Mar­cos pro­duced sev­eral of the Philip­pines’ finest movies in­clud­ing Oro, Plata, Mata; Mis­teryo sa Tuwa; Soltero and the in­ter­na­tion­ally ac­claimed Hi­mala. She also co-pro­duced the movie Bru­tal with Mar­ilou Diaz-abaya; Scorpio Nights with Peque Gal­laga; and The Boat­man with Tikoy Aguiluz.

Now, af­ter more than two decades, Mar­cos re­turns to moviemak­ing with an­other mas­ter­piece in Pinta*kasi— a hy­brid in­die movie that is both di­verse in vi­su­als and raw in sto­ry­telling.

Pinta*kasi, is what Mar­cos proudly de­scribes as a “hip-hop fairy­tale movie.” It fea­tures hip hop mu­sic and mod­ern dance (by the Philip­pine All Stars no less) and com­bines live ac­tion with 2D an­i­ma­tion to make it even more ap­peal­ing to the youth.

The story is about change—about a boy named DJ who fights for peace and the love of his life Josie, amid the brew­ing con­flict from both in­ter­nal and ex­ter­nal forces that threaten their garbage is­land home. It is also a movie full of metaphors for so­ci­ety: From the char­ac­ters whose names are based on Philip­pine he­roes; to the fight scenes liken­ing them to two fight­ing cocks in a derby; and his pas­sion for paint­ing hence the ti­tle Pinta* Kasi. The an­i­ma­tion se­quences on the other hand, Mar­cos said, were used to rep­re­sent the al­ter­nate re­al­ity per­ceived by the char­ac­ters

The film, which took al­most five years in the mak­ing, stars JM de Guz­man, John Wayne, Erich Gon­za­les, Giselle Sanchez and Boots An­son-roa. It will be shown com­mer­cially be­gin­ning Fe­bru­ary 8 in SM Mega­mall, SM Mall of Asia, SM Fairview, SM Marik­ina, SM North EDSA, SM Cebu and SM Iloilo; and Fe­bru­ary 29 in SM Baguio, SM Davao and SM Batan­gas.

The movie has al­ready won top awards at the 2011 Metro Manila Film Fes­ti­val, and now also holds the dis­tinc­tion of be­ing the first Filipino copy­righted ma­te­rial to go mul­ti­plat­form.


“I al­ways wanted to do some­thing that has never been done be­fore—that has al­ways been the way I see things, even dur­ing the ECP,” Mar­cos told re­porters dur­ing a pocket in­ter­view held at 8 Spices res­tau­rant in Que­zon City.

The Ilo­cos Norte gov­er­nor then re­vealed her plans to build a fran­chise around Pinta* Kasi that in­cludes a graphic novel, mu­sic videos, a CD of is all- orig­i­nal sound­track, mer­chan­dise such as t- shirts and ac­tion fig­ures, and even video games. Son Borgy Man­otoc, who was also at the gath­er­ing, said he will be in charge of de­vel­op­ing and mar­ket­ing the project. Borgy shared that the game will ini­tially be avail­able on Face­book and even­tu­ally the Ap­ple App store.

“Gusto nam­ing mag­ex­per­i­ment dahil maram­ing hu­mi­hingi ng T- shirt, and other stuff. A lot of peo­ple are also ask­ing for the mu­sic [ sound­track] dahil na­pak­a­ganda ng orig­i­nal Pi­noy mu­sic na gi­na­mit sa film,” Mar­cos added.

She said it was the rea­son why she chose to pro­duce a movie that is partly an­i­ma­tion.

“The prob­lem with live ac­tion films is that you can­not eas­ily trans­late them into toys, and even harder to adapt into a game,” she rea­soned out. “Plus with an­i­ma­tion, even though the cre­ator has al­ready died— like Charles Schulz’ ‘ Peanuts’ for ex­am­ple— ay buhay pa din yung fran­chise. Spi­der­man is so old and in the Philip­pines we have been out­sourc­ing an­i­ma­tion for so long to Dis­ney but we still haven’t been able to cre­ate our own.”

Apart from Pinta* Kasi, the mo­mand-son tan­dem and their team are also busy work­ing on the final touches of their fol­low-up project called The La­mang Ex­per­i­ment.

The Lam- ang Ex­per­i­ment is a sci- fi graphic novel based on the Filipino epic “Biag ni Lam-ang.” The graphic novel has three vol­umes, slated for dig­i­tal re­lease, the first of which is al­ready avail­able in the mar­ket. It also has a mo­tion graphic video that can be seen on Youtube, and like Pinta*kasi, Lam-ang will also have its own mer­chan­dise and on­line game in the works.

“I don’t think it’s my role to do a film that any­one else can do. Not that no­body can do the films I make; but rather I want to cre­ate some­thing that no­body has a gump­tion or where­withal to do,” she re­lates. “That is why I chose to do a movie that in­cor­po­rates an­i­ma­tion and why I plan to do more complicate­d things like mer­chan­dise and games. Masakit nga sa ulo, but I’m a multi-tasker na­man, and I feel it is my role is to pull things to­gether and do new stuff.”

In­die god­mother and a Sand Dunes Fes­ti­val

When asked why she prefers to do in­die films in­stead of com­mer­cial movies, the lady gov­er­nor ex­plained, “I have noth­ing against a well-made good com­mer­cial film, nor do I have any­thing against an in­die film that makes a lot of money. But my dream is to bring the artis­tic and com­mer­cial el­e­ments to­gether.”

Mar­cos said they are quite happy to be given the chance to have a com­mer­cial re­lease na­tion­wide. She also re­vealed that they have been in­vited to the Honolulu Film Fes­ti­val and the Bei­jing Film Fes­ti­val— which is one of the big­gest mar­kets for movies— mainly on the strength of word of mouth buzz and the film’s hip hop el­e­ments.

Un­for­tu­nately, she be­lieves not all in­die films get the proper ex­po­sure they de­serve. That is one of the rea­sons why Mar­cos de­cided to hold a small film fes­ti­val with the Film De­vel­op­ment Coun­cil of the Philip­pines in her prov­ince last year. She hopes to have an­other one soon but it must be a film fes­ti­val for film ex­change, dis­trib­u­tors and film pro­mot­ers as well.

“One of the prob­lems of in­die film mak­ers is hindi sila maka­pa­sok sa me­dia, sa TV, sa print; and sec­ond is hindi sila maka­pa­sok sa sine­han for dis­tri­bu­tion, so we have to dis­cuss dig­i­tal the­aters. We also have to dis­cuss al­ter­nate venues for in­die films. That is what we’re still look­ing at the avail­able op­tions.”

“If they have a Sun­dance Fes­ti­val in the US, why not have a Sand Dunes Film Fes­ti­val in Ilo­cos Norte?” she re­torted.

Be­sides plan­ning for a film fes­ti­val, Mar­cos is also busy pro­mot­ing the prov­ince as the “Film cap­i­tal of the Philip­pines,” and of­fer­ing gen­er­ous in­cen­tives to film­mak­ers.

“Once they ar­rive in Ilo­cos, we will as­sume part of their ex­penses in accommodat­ion, trans­porta­tion, lo­ca­tions and cater­ing. Hangga’t kaya namin, we’ll coun­ter­part. Not na­man 50/50 kasi so­brang bi­gat na lalo na ka­pag for­eign films. But we will do as much as we can to help them,” ex­plained the gra­cious gov­er­nor.

The prov­ince of Ilo­cos had be­come part of sev­eral Hol­ly­wood films like Born on the Fourth of July, Mad Max, and sev­eral of Roger Cor­man’s grind­house dou­ble fea­ture films. On the lo­cal front films like Temp­ta­tion Is­land and the Panday movie se­ries have be­come one of the prov­ince’s big­gest sources of in­come.

“Ang ma­g­a­nda sa film, mal­iban sa art as­pect, is it pro­vides liveli­hood to the peo­ple. Maram­ing na- hire kaya gus­tong­gusto namin noon na mag- lo­ca­tion dito ang mga Amer­i­can films. Dahil yung lo­ca­tion, van rental, he­li­copter rental, accommodat­ion, ho­tels, and they also hire a lot of Filipino tal­ents. Hope­fully, with Bourne Legacy and Sur­vivor be­ing shot in the county, it will open up more up­com­ing projects and op­por­tu­ni­ties,” she ended.

Mother and son. Imee Mar­cos and Borgy Man­otoc show off their Lam- Ang Ex­per­i­ment DE­SPITE hav­ing a 6- year- old daugh­ter, TV host and ac­tress Va­lerie Con­cep­cion said she had no prob­lems go­ing sexy or be­ing la­beled as one “hot momma.” In fact, the 24-...

Pho­tos taken from cre­ative­me­di­­

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