MAKATI-based iAcademy is set to hold its first online film festival that will be graced and judged by three internationally-acclaimed Filipino filmmakers.
The Ground Glass Film Festival 2020 will be launched this September 21-25, 2020, at the online Nexus Gallery of iAcademy, a school known for its specialized programs in computing, business, and design.
The jury for this first edition includes Raymond Red, the only Filipino to date to have won the prestigious Palme d’Or from the Cannes Film Festival for his short film “Anino”; Sari Dalena, a two-time URIAN-winner for her short films and winner of Best Picture for “Ka Oryang” and the recent film exploring National Artist Nick Joaquin, “Dahling Nick”; and John Torres, who won numerous awards for his films “Todo Todo Teros” and “Years When I was a Child Outside” that displays a flair for the experimental.
In this film festival, students are invited to submit their entries inspired and made during the lockdown period. It can be a narrative, documentary, experimental, animated film or in hybrid form.
“At this challenging time, we are compelled to create a platform for our students where they can best express themselves and their sentiments on our current situation. This film festival is also an opportunity for them to see their works in a festival-type environment under the guidance and mentorship of Filipino film icons,” said Jon Cuyson, dean of iAcademy’s School of Design and Arts and chairperson of the Film and Visual Arts program.
“It was amazing to see how these students were not just able to cope with the sudden life-changing shift during the lockdown, but muster up the energy to create,” said Keith Sicat who serves as the festival director. “As a practitioner, it’s humbling to see these students’ ability to unleash their creativity despite what the world is going through.”
The name of the festival is based on the element in a camera called the “ground-glass” that aids in focus. “The name is meant to provide historical context for the young filmmakers,” Sicat explained. “The students are a part of the continuum of this medium of capturing images.”
Taking its cue from online screenings, the Ground Glass Film Festival 2020 will be a part of iAcademy’s annual SODA or School of Arts and Design Week, where the school creates exciting online activities for the Multimedia Arts, Animation, Fashion, and Film programs. According to Cuyson, the SODA Week 2020 is “part of the school’s efforts to continue educating and engaging our diverse students’ interests with online activities.”
“This is the kind of platform that we give to our students where they can showcase their creativity and talent, and be truly exposed to the ins and outs of the creative industry. Our students have been participating in local and international competitions to showcase their amazing works, and this event is another opportunity for them to highlight these achievements,” Vanessa Tanco, iAcademy’s president and CEO, further emphasized.
Aside from the Film Fest, the SODA Week will also host lectures, and screenings to expose and educate participants to current issues and trends in the world of film, fashion, animation and multimedia arts. This includes the Nexus Virtual Gallery that will feature interdisciplinary artist Dex Fernandez’s works; Nexus Gallery Online Talks, a podcast-style series of interviews with industry professionals, local and international artists, and experts; Animation Film Festival that will feature 10 award-winning student animated works; and MMA Hacks, a live workshop style event about industry shortcuts. (✓)