UE CFAD Mentor, Mentee Showcase Work in Int’l Film Fest

The photos show UE CFAD graduates and filmmakers Richard S. Legaspi and John Lanbert Rafols, in Egypt for the 2019 Ismailia International Film Festival; Mr. Rafols being interviewed by an Egyptian TV channel in line with his short documentary Yero; Mr. Rafols and Prof. Legaspi flanking Ismailia Film Festival curator Sherif Awad; and Mr. Rafols showing how far he's come, with a pose near one of Egypt’s world-famous pyramids.

The photos show UE CFAD graduates and filmmakers Richard S. Legaspi and John Lanbert Rafols, in Egypt for the 2019 Ismailia International Film Festival; Mr. Rafols being interviewed by an Egyptian TV channel in line with his short documentary Yero; Mr. Rafols and Prof. Legaspi flanking Ismailia Film Festival curator Sherif Awad; and Mr. Rafols showing how far he’s come, with a pose near one of Egypt’s world-famous pyramids.

UE College of Fine Arts, Architecture and Design (CFAD) Advertising Arts graduates John Lanbert D. Rafols, Jay M. Condeno and John Nico S. Nunag, makers of the award-winning short film Yero, were recently invited to screen their movie at the competition program of 21st Ismailia International Film Festival for documentary and short films held last April 10 to 16, 2019, in Ismailia, Egypt.

Mr. Rafols, who directed Yero before graduating from UE in December 2018, was accompanied by his video production adviser, Prof. Richard Soriano Legaspi, himself an award-winning filmmaker and a 2000 UE College of Fine Arts graduate. They flew to Egypt to represent the Philippines in one of the biggest film festivals in the Arab world. Ismailia, known as “the City of Beauty and Enchantment,” is a city in northeastern Egypt situated on the west bank of the Suez Canal. While there, the two UE CFAD alumni experienced the first-class hospitality of Ismailia Ministry of Culture, Egyptian Film Center and Ismailia Governorate in the six-day cultural event.

The two-decade Ismailia International Film Festival remains committed to showcasing important and significant documentaries and short films to celebrate cinema, creativity and the undeniable influence of film around the world.

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Yero, which won Best Short Documentary at the 21 Islands International Short Film Festival in New York, USA, on February 12, 2019, tells the life of two factory workers in a corrugated-iron recycling factory that is hidden from the public world. It reveals the harsh conditions inside the factory, as workers scavengers through metal scraps without safety tools or hazard protection for themselves.

After the screening of Yero at the cultural palace, Mr. Rafols was interviewed by the local Nile Cinema Channel about his filmmaking inspiration and process. He is ecstatic up to now about their amazing experience and how his humble film was made accessible to a foreign audience.

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In his interview during the festival’s open forum, Mr. Rafols said, “This is my first time to attend an international film festival. It was astounding to see our film on a big screen. You feel this sense of happiness and pride as you see the crowd watching a Filipino film, knowing that consequently it will expose the unpleasantness of the corrugated iron industry. It was a rewarding experience to represent my country on behalf of my production team. I’m proud to be a ‘UEnian’ artist.”

Aside from an industry forum and an international seminar related to production and distribution, the film festival also organized a history and cultural tour for the filmmakers, including a remarkable tour of the Suez Canal, the ancient pyramids and the first mosque ever built in Africa, the Mosque Amr Ibn al-As in Cairo.

As a mentor, Prof. Legaspi is elated that his students are doing great in local and international film festivals and art residencies abroad. UE CFAD’s Visual Communication (formerly Advertising Arts) Department is continuously making waves in the field of design and moving images.

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This marks the latest occasion for a UE CFAD student or alumnus to represent the country. To name a few: Ms. Camille R. Teves was part of the 3rd ASEAN-ROK Film Leaders Incubator 2014 in Myanmar and Japan; Rodmarie Angeline Tabilog was at the 17th Kota Kinabalu International Film Festival in Malaysia in 2017 and had a SEAMi Art Residency in Taiwan in 2018; and Elvin Jay E. Macanlalay’s film How the Beasts Got Hyped is set to compete in Kinolikbez X Documentary Film Festival in Saint-Petersburg, Russia, on July 3 to 7, 2019.

Yero is one of the most successful UE student-produced short films to date, having also been officially selected for the 30th Cultural Center of the Philippines Gawad Alternatibo festival in 2018 and the 6th Nabunturan Independent Film Exhibition in Compostela Valley. Mr. Rafols is grateful to the Ismailia for his first film festival travel, and Prof. Legaspi is equally appreciative of the travel grant provided by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA).

Congratulations and keep it up, Warrior Filmmakers!

(Report and photos courtesy of Prof. Legaspi)

#UECFAD
#WarriorFilmmakers
#TomorrowBeginsintheEast

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