New ‘RIGHTS’ films premiere this week, Martial Law remembered

September 18, 2008

Producers and filmmakers of last year’s controversial RIGHTS film compilation are once again braving the rough waters of possible state intervention, as they come up with a new set of public service advertisements (PSAs) and short films dubbed, RIGHTS Volume 2.0.

RIGHTS is a compilation of independently produced and human rights-themed short films. The first compilation was cut short of its scheduled premier last year at Robinson’s Indie Sine, following MTRCB’s X rating, which rendered its initial non-exhibition in public, though lifted a few days later.

Yet, this form of repression only succeeded in inspiring new filmmakers to produce more human rights films.

Still cautious of blatant state censorship, however, this year’s RIGHTS Volume 2.0 premiere and DVD launching is set at the UP College of Mass Communication Media Center, UP Diliman on September 19, Friday at 6PM to be followed by an open forum after the screening. The event is co-presented by the UP College of Mass Communication-Student Council. Admission is free.

The initiative, with the independent multimedia collective Southern Tagalog Exposure (STEx) as the executive producer, intends to expose the incessant human rights violations in the country.

It also underscores the open and continuing call for filmmakers to participate in the growing movement to defend and uphold human rights and call upon social relevance and responsibility among artists by exercising their roles as citizens and responding to the challenges of the nation in crisis.

Timely of the Martial Law anniversary on September 21, it likewise honors and commemorates the victims and martyrs of the fascist Marcos regime and heeds to continue the artistic struggle for justice and democracy.

At least 15 short films will be featured in this sequel collection of hard-line human rights-themed selections by emerging and established independent filmmakers and film collectives, namely JP Carpio, Keith Sicat, J Pacena, Artist’s Arrest, Kodao Productions, Bon Labora, Emil Mercado, Ging Flores, Ron Papag, Ted Ferreras, Zig Dulay, Recci Bacolor, Sine Patriyotiko, and ST Exposure.

Prominently, acclaimed actors Joel Torre, Archie Adamos, Art Acuna and Bonifacio Ilagan and actress-environmentalist Chin-Chin Gutierrez are among those in performance in the short film collection.

Director Bibeth Orteza, multi-awarded screenwriter Doy del Mundo, film critics and UP Faculty Roland Tolentino and Sarah Raymundo, and “Tagaytay 5” member and poet Axel Pinpin complete the event as Reactors. Likewise, the launching will also be graced by personalities such as Editha Burgos, mother of missing activist Jonas Burgos; National Artist Bien Lumbera; and renowned Director Nick de Ocampo, among others.

Here is the list of featured films and PSAs:

Artist’s ARREST – “Awit”
Artist’s ARREST – “Tula”
Bon Labora – “Warrant”
Emil Mercado – “Peace”
Ging Flores- “Luya”
J Pacena – “Left Turn”
JP Carpio – “Tao Po”
Keith Sicat – “SIlenced”
Kodao Productions – “Quenching Fire”
Ron Papag – “Rights 101”
Sinepatriyotiko – “Stop the Killings”
Southern Tagalog Exposure – “Bakwet”
Southern Tagalog Exposure – “Eduardo Serrano”
Ted Edward Ferreras – “Terorista Ka Ano?” (Ted is one of my orgmates back in college. Some of the actors in his PSA are my orgmates and good friends too.)
Zig Dulay and Recci Bacolor – “Tagu-Taguan”

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