I got a text from Mark Laccay (who did the sound re/design for Engkwentro) while I was in the middle of one of my missions fundraising gigs:
“It is done! Venice International Film Festival 2009 Orizzonti Winner ENGKWENTRO!!! Mabuhay ang Pinoy Film Maker! Ipagkalat at ikasaya natin lahat!”
Wow. It was just a few weeks ago when I was at the SweetSpot Studio documenting Pepe Diokno, Mark Laccay and their audio team doing the finishing touches for Engkwentro before it was shown in Cinemalaya, I was there shell-shocked when Cinemalaya didn’t give a SINGLE official award to Engkwentro, I was there outside the CCP smiling inside knowing, it took a lot of guts for the foreigner Cinemalaya juror to grab the microphone and give Engkwentro the first “unofficial” jury citation in Cinemalaya history, I remember choosing the Cory yellow-inspired poster for the Venice version and I remember having to FTP the Engkwentro soundtracks for the Venice red carpet while GMail was done via IMAP.
It’s all worth the roller-coaster ride and congratulations to Pepe Diokno who was ONLY 21 years old and a U.P Film undergrad (and still is I think) when he finished! Pepe Diokno’s Engkwentro is the second Filipino director to be in Venice (after Mike de Leon’s “Sister Stella L” in 1984- I have to disagree with Ricky Lo on this one since Engkwentro was already considered by Venice DURING Cinemalaya, so Brillante Mendoza becomes the third Filipino director to compete, although the first to compete both in Cannes and Venice)
one last quote from Mark Laccay from his facebook:
“Engkwentro WINS 2 Major Award At the Venice Film Fest 2009!!!!! Orizzonti 2009 Award and The Lion Of the Future Award!!!! Mabuhay and Pinoy Independent Film Maker!!!!! 🙂 Mabuhay ang Pinoy Talent!!!!!!!!!”