Carlo Francisco Manatad’s short film, “Jodilerks dela Cruz, Employee of the Month,” will compete in the 56th International Critics’ Week (Semaine dela Critique) of the 70th Cannes Film Festival, to be held in the south of France from May 18 to 26.
Established in 1962 by the French Union of Film Critics, the International Critics’ Week is the oldest parallel part of Cannes. It goals to “discover new talents.” The likes of Bernardo Bertolucci, Ken Loach, Wong Kar-Wai and Alejandro González Iñárritu “were first introduced to the public at La Semaine.”
Manatad’s short film follows a fuel station attendant, performed by award-winning actress Angeli Bayani, on her final day of labor in a dilapidated station slated for foreclosures. Also in the solid are Ross Pesigan and Ogie Tiglao.
Manatad lately received one of the best comedy honor on the Oscar-qualifying pageant, the 26th Aspen Shortsfest, together with his short film, “Fatima Maria Torres and the Invasion of Space Shuttle Pinas 25.”
“I am so grateful to my cast and crew, who were willing to help out in this shoot that was thrown together in less than two weeks,” Manatad associated. “My intention was to direct a short with a narrative structure similar to the feature film I’m developing, as well as to work on a project with the same team as the feature film.”
He described the shoot as “a great experience” and being chosen as a part of Critics’ Week as “priceless.”
“It’s an incredible honor to be the only film representing the Philippines in Cannes this year. It still feels surreal,” he quipped. Manatad is among the honorees of the Inquirer Indie Bravo! final December.—BAYANI SAN DIEGO JR.
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