This is supposed to be the first entry for the year. It could’ve been more dramatic and significant as well if it was made at the exact first day of the year. But who da heck cares?! At least I made it to the 11th day of the year. Okay na yun. May one na rin naman eh. Dalawa pa nga eh! :p
Anyways, we’ve just finished our VE project, a short film, entitled BAYANi. It’s quite a common term for a title, but it has a subliminal message in it. Just notice the capitalization of the letters. ^_^
Anyways, BAYANi has been the sole reason why the first post of the year is being made on the 11th. This short film of ours, brought about by my cramming, procrastination and laziness, took almost all of my free time last week, as well as my WHOLE weekend, imagine that. We’ve been side-filming the said project whenever we all have free time, which is almost always every dismissal, that’s why I come home late most of the time, not allowing me to use my PC. I haven’t use my PC since January 3, 2005, and I haven’t used it still up to now. I miss my PC.
BAYANi centers mostly under a specific theme of “Unsung Heroes”. The General theme of the film festival (Cine ni Juan 2, the festival where BAYANi hopefully should enter) is Patriotism, and a theme that’s been a tail of Patriotism is Heroism, so we chose that aspect. It’s almost a 4-man production team, comprised of Jerome Quinto (Story, Screenplay, 1st Assistant Director, Cameraman and Production manager), Paolo Edward Imperial (Camera, Technical Director, 2nd Assistant Director and Musical Director), Michael Anabo (Producer kuno), and yours truly (Director, Cameraman and Editor). The others (all 20 other members) participated as actors and extras. As apparent as the apparent moon on the apparent sky, my task is the heaviest of all. I had to make sure everything goes well with regards to the shooting of the film, plus I have to EDIT the film.
Being a cameraman is quite an easy job, since all I had to take care of is the angle, the lighting and the sound of what I’m capturing. What’s hard is directing and editing, since these two is one of the three aspects that make a great film (add to that the story/screenplay). I had to be careful of what shots I take, and bear in mind the things I should remember when it’s editing time.
We got all kinds of help from everywhere. Ate Tin willingly participated as a main actress (Thanks a lot to her!!!), Ilaya Barangka Elementary School gladly provided us with a public school setting (Thanks to Madam Principal!!!), San Roque Parish unresentfully lent us their crypt (columbary) and the FORT (Fourth Floor!) to shoot some of the relevant scenes (Salamat, Parokya ni Jerome! ^_^), St. Lukes Medical Center for providing us with a hospital room even without their knowledge (thanks and no thanks to Ron’s Mom’s Hospitalization!!!), DBTC School Clinic for providing us with hospital beds and the whole atmosphere that comes with it (Thanks to Doc and Ate Nurse!!!), Ninoy Aquino International Airport for providing us with a Departure Scene at the ARRIVAL Area (again, without their knowledge), Dio Manrique for helping me with Premiere (this man helped me a TON!!!), Javerri Velasco for being my “kadamay” during the last moments of the editing (na nalaman ko na hindi pa pala kami huli. joke lang.), Philip Bernard “By” Decena for providing me with the technology and a place to stay for the nights of sleepless Editing, and to “Toto”, Peli’s Tito-Brother, for the big help he offered during the times when we were having Video Format Problems (this guy’s the one to call when you have videocam problems! Bayaran nyo nga lang sya… kami libre, project ni Peli yun eh! :p). To the other people I forgot to be grateful for, you’re in my prayers. And sorry, too! :p
Ladies and Gentlemen, the story of “BAYANi”:
Patrick is a thirteen-year-old student who is like any other ordinary student out there. With his dad being an OFW in Iraq, he is left to the care of his uncle Boy. Patrick is a diligent student and a bright one at that.
The film focuses on three personas of many Unsung Heroes today: the teacher, the doctor and the OFW.
The teacher is Ms. Josephine Delos Santos, a dedicated one at her job, whose mother is diagnosed of cancer and has been in the hospital for a very long time now. (played by Ms. Christina Nangit, a real-time public school teacher)
The doctor is Dr. John Cruz, a very humble doctor who doesn’t look at the necessity for money as the basis for his job, but the welfare of the people he’s medicating. (played by Dan Arevalo, one of our groupmates).
The OFW is Juan Dela Cruz, a very resembling persona of the ordinary Pinoy, hence the name. He’s a hardworking OFW even though he only had to feed the mouths of himself and his son. He loves his son so much that he works hard for him. (played by Ron Evangelista, another one of our groupmates).
Patrick is played by Philip Decena. He dies at the end (hehe spoiler!). But he didn’t die an ordinary death. Having realized the heroism that’s unsung (anu daw?!) of the preceeding ordinary people, he gave his life to save another. Hence the title BAYANi, with a subtitle “Ordinaryong TAO para sa KAPWA at BAYAN”.
I had so much fun making this film. Especially with the bloopers.
By far, we are the film with the lowest budget. Around less than 500 pesos with only P30 contribution from each of the 24 members. We were supposed to be a no-budget film, but due to expenditures in transportation, food, etc., we had to produce some funds for reimbursements etc.
Duplicates of the Submitted copy to the Festival is available for free. The UNCUT version, however, contains an IMPROVED version of the film (we lacked time) plus some bloopers at the end, costs around 50-100 pesos. :p