Off to Kuching Sarawak, Malaysia for the AIFFA 2015

I guess it is okay to talk about it now, but I’m going to be attending the ASEAN International Film Festival Awards 2015 in Kuching Sarawak, Malaysia as part of the Filipino delegation for being the screenwriter of Sonata with our producer and lead star Cherie Gil.

Our little film that we poured all our energy, artistry, craft, and tender loving care back in 2013 seems to still find a way to its audience.

Cherie Gil as Regina Cadena in Sonata -- a tour de force performance that truly shows her breadth and width as an actress will be screened at the ASEAN International Film Festival in Kuching Sarawak, Malaysia (April 9-11)

Cherie Gil as Regina Cadena in Sonata — a tour de force performance that truly shows her breadth and width as an actress will be screened at the ASEAN International Film Festival in Kuching Sarawak, Malaysia (April 9-11)

I knew as far back as early March that I would be attending the event but I didn’t want to talk about it until the ticket arrived as I didn’t want to have to take it back if I wasn’t able to go.

But the ticket did arrive and it looks like I’m going and it’s a 3-day festival with opportunities for filmmakers from all over the world to mingle and talk business and to hear seminars and forums on filmmaking on an international level.

And then, there’s the gala event on the last day of the festival were there will be a 12-hour long movie marathon called “Movies in the Rainforest” at the Borneo Convention Centre and if I’m not mistaken, Sonata will be one of the films shown in that movie marathon.

I’m not sure if our film is part of the competition but the awards night will follow after. The AIFFA is a biennial event so, if I’m not mistaken, this covers two years and that might mean Sonata is in the running. If not, I am okay with that. I’m just glad that it’s going to be screened again, this time outside of the country, and the last AIFFA boasts of an attendance of approximately 4.8 million people.

12 hours is a long time so I don’t expect everyone to be watching every film in “Movies in the Rainforest” but if even a fraction of that get to see Sonata, then I’ll be a very happy bunny. Ten years ago, I would have been lying if I told you I didn’t want Sonata to win an award. When I was 26, the awards meant something to me. It meant recognition for good work. It meant an acknowledgement of the sort of craftsmanship and validation that the film we made was good. Now that I’m 36, the award doesn’t mean anything to me. It’s chosen by a panel of judges and their aesthetic may be different from mine. It’s a subjective decision. Now, I just want to do good work — work that I know is good — and get to share that with as many people as possible.

I think I wrote a beautiful film. I know everyone involved in the film gave their all. I’m very proud of Sonata and I’m extremely happy and grateful that it has this chance to be shown to an international audience.

So, on April 9-12, I’ll be in Sarawak, Malaysia for the AIFFA 2015.

Here are more articles about AIFFA 2015:

Here’s your chance to catch a 12-hour movie marathon in a rainforest (Malaysia Digest)

Jackie Chan to attend Asean Film Festival (FMT News)

Kuching to host AIFFA 2015 on April 9-11 (Borneo Post online)

 

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