NEW YORK—Six Philippine films that showcased the immense talents of Filipino filmmakers and artists headlined the 17th New York Asian Film Festival (NYAFF) at the Lincoln Center and the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, New York, from June 29 to July 15.
New York film enthusiasts and the Filipino-American community were on hand during the five nights that featured the Filipino films, where both enjoyed the movies and also met with filmmakers, as well as artists who shared their unique vision with the public.
The Philippine consulate general in New York, headed by Deputy Consul General Kerwin Orville C. Tate, attended the screening the films.
This year, the Philippines had the biggest lineup in the festival since 2013. The screened films included Richard Somes’s We Will Not Die Tonight; the Mikhail Red-megged Neomanila; On the Job and BuyBust, both directed by Erik Matti; Respeto of Treb Montreras II; as well as Sid and Aya (Not a Love Story) from Irene Emma Villamor.
The hip-hop film Respeto (2017) bagged the festival’s Tiger Unleashed Award for Best Feature Film.
During the “talk-back” session attended by the whole cast of “Respeto,” producer Coreen Jimenez revealed that the film was shot and finished in only three months, but the storyline was conceived by rapper-director Montreras seven years ago. The film was also the first-ever of hip-hop artist Abra.
BuyBust was the closing-night feature of the festival, where the film made its world premier.
Matti said the story was developed during the filming of On the Job, and added that BuyBust was two years in the making.
NYAFF Deputy Director Stephen Cremin led the talk-back of the featured Filipino films on July 14 and 15.