Thursday, January 26, 2012

On Pureza, The Story of Negros Sugar (Documentary Film - 2012)

PUREZA, The Story of Negros Sugar
A Full Documentary Film by Jay Abello
February 2012

Part 1
LIVING MI DULCE VIDA
by Ihvonie “Teytey” Sevilleno

Pureza, The Story of Negros Sugar is a full documentary film


Executive Producers J. ABELLO, JOEY GASTON
Producers FIONA BORRES, AGNES VILLAR
Director J. ABELLO
Writers JET ORBIDA, CHECCS OSMEÑA
Editor FIONA BORRES
Director of Photography J. ABELLO
Asst. Director LOVELLE BELLOCILLO
Visual FX Supervisor RICHARD FRANCIA
Sound Engineers ALBERT MICHAEL IDIOMA, ALEX TOMBOC
Music PEARLSHA ABUBAKAR
Researchers IHVONIE SEVILLENO, KAT VALENCIA

Living mi dulce vida in Negros, I thought I knew it all. Spoken like a true-blue Negrense, “Kabalo na ko na ah!”

Tawrrnngg… was I sooo wrong. Researching for a 200-year old province – our Negros Occidental – was HHHHHAAARRRRDDDD.

Preparing a Scene at General Aniceto Lacson's Ancestral House in Hacienda Claparols, Talisay City

 Finding books and research materials about Negros was not as easy as typing N-E-G-R-O-S on Google. Thousands of delicate pages, old newspaper clippings, heavy hardbound books, wooden chests and decrepit boxes of old photos were our companions for a year.  After 3 years, some pages are still haunting my dreams.

Moi, Researcher
Kat Valencia, Researcher while researching
at the Negros Occidental Historical Commission
Library beside the Provincial Library
As researchers, we had to bring our own “top-of-the-line” mobile digital archiving equipment.  This included laptops, point-and-shoot cameras, flash drives, removable drives and an old grey scanner (which seemed heavier because of its monstrosity of cables). For a year, we lugged them around so we could provide our writers with the information they needed.



My tasks in this location shoot at Hacienda Santa Rosalia in Manapla includes Photo Documentation,
Wardrobe Assistant and Production Coordinator

I have always loved libraries but I got overdosed with libraries while doing the film. We spent thousands of hours at the Rafael Salas Library of the Negros Museum, the Provincial Library of Negros Occidental and its neighbor the Negros Occidental Historical Commission Library. I also went to the Silliman University Library in Dumaguete, Negros Oriental and the Center for Western Visayas Studies of the University of the Philippines – Iloilo. And the list goes on and on, with thousands of pages, maps, political cartoons, articles and photos scanned to the highest resolution that our old thick scanner can handle.

The House of the Gastons, Hacienda Santa Rosalia, Manapla, Negros Occidental, Philippines
(one of our locations for the Cosplay Shoot)
Kat, Velle and I (and our countless assistants) visited ancestral homes and private libraries and went through numerous personal collections – all these to know more about US. I was basically a scavenger/hunter/forager for anything NEGROS and WHO to talk to in Negros. It seemed to be an endless quest for yours truly, the struggling “Sugar Expert IV (a sugarity)”.

(Sugarity:  noun: an original Pureza term related to Negros sugar and its industry.)




Ihvonie “Teytey” Sevilleno
Researcher/Production Coordinator/Director’s Soothsayer/Pureza House Dumaan and Official Cook/Marketing Person/Museum Worker






PART 2

MARRIED TO PUREZA

Direk Jay Abello on the Cosplay Shoot (Chroma)
I remember how we called ourselves - work addicts and OCs – because of the passion we gave to our work.  The repercussions were so great that we had sleepless nights and numerous trips to 24-hour McDonald’s stores.  By then, we had a regular quitting of Production Assistants who got overwhelmed with our sugarities and such.


Makeup for our "Uncle Sam" (Direk Milton Dionzon)

Direk Jay Abello with the cast and production crew at our Pureza - Giant Exterior Chroma Wall (available light)


Migraine-inducing meetings went for, sometimes, 72 hours.  These meetings had Direk Jay, Sir Jet and Miss Checcs endlessly talking and writing on our humongous white boards in PeacePond and Pureza house. How I wished then that those white boards were large digital touch-screens so I could copy-paste their notes unto MSWord! By the end of the 72nd hour, I resorted to taking photographs of the notes on those white boards.

Ms. Checcs, Fiona Borres, Kat Valencia and Lovelle Bellocillo:
We will always be Pureza Girls!

With Pureza, it was like a wedding. Something blue, something borrowed and something new. Pureza was not only blood, sweat and tears but tons of laughter, friendship and family. After three years, I am not divorcing Pureza. But we are all coming home to finally tell OUR story. Finally.

===========





Negros Pureza Foundation and Bonfire Productions, Inc.
in cooperation with
the National Commission for Culture and the Arts and 7th Films
present
 “PUREZA:  The Story of Negros Sugar”


SYNOPSIS


For the first time in Philippine cinema, a full-length documentary film on the struggling sugar industry of the island of Negros and how a piece of crystallized grain could affect a whole island of 3 million people!


At the turn of the 20th century, Negrense “hacienderos” (sugarcane land owners) were the richest and their farm workers the highest paid in the country. But in a span of a century, the Negros sugar industry plunged from its proverbial pedestal into its inglorious present state.


Why is the industry in peril?  Is it, indeed, a flailing sunset industry?


Filmmaker J Abello, a former sugarcane farm manager, offers a glimpse of the island’s turbulent history through dramatic and controversial video:  lavish parties of Negros sugar barons, candid interviews with hacienderos, never before seen footage of Negros Island…and more.


“Pureza: The Story of Negros Sugar” traces the history of the Negros sugar industry as it faces strife and discord in the advent of the 21st century. 


 PRODUCTION STAFF:
Director – J. Abello
Editor – Fiona Borres
Executive Producers –J. Abello, Joey Gaston
Producers– Fiona Borres, Agnes Villar
Writers – Jet Orbida, Checcs Osmeña
Director of Photography – J. Abello
Sound Engineers – Albert Michael Idioma, Alex Tombok
Music – Pearlsha Abubakar
Visual FX Supervisor – Richard Francia
Asst. Director – Lovelle Bellocillo
Researchers – Ihvonie Sevilleno, Kat Valencia




COSPLAY ACTORS:


Oying Osmeña
Milton Dionzon
Mandy Alimon
Eero Martinez
Dante Amaguin




DIRECTOR’S BIOGRAPHY:
JAY ABELLO


An industry disciple working on over 25 feature films in the Philippines, countless TV shows including soap operas and TV commercials in a span of 10 years, Jay Abello is a movie fan by heart.  He describes the movie set as “one of the most romantic places you can ever be in. You’re in the middle of nowhere and you have all these lights and production people trying to make something out of nothing and it’s a new world altogether.” 


He also believes that he is a film student at best and has always traveled and accepted projects based on this—“I just want to learn more about film.”


Among Jay Abello’s best works is doing cinematography for the films Brutus (Tara Illenberger), Donor (Mark Meily), Kano’(Coreen Jimenez) and Nino(Loy Arcenas).   He has also directed two feature films (Ligaw Liham and Namets!) and Pureza is his first documentary feature.


DIRECTOR’S INFORMATION:
Unit 1806 Tower 3
Avida Towers
New Manila
Quezon City
Mobile: 0917-8588813
Landline: (02) 2151205
Email: behonest@jayabello.com


PRODUCERS’ INFO:


NEGROS PUREZA FOUNDATION, INC.
North Drive Corner Margarita Streets
Villamonte Public Market
Bacolod City
Contact Persons: Andrea Gallos or Jojane Morcilla or Mel Mendoza
Mobile: +63 907 706 1332 or +63 932 306 5277 or +63 917 301 2878
Landline: (034) 433-5034 


BONFIRE PRODUCTIONS
FSS Bldg 1 Annex
89 Scout Castor St.
Diliman, Quezon City
Contacts: Fiona Borres or Zandra Garay
Mobile: +63 928 551 6724
Landline: 632-3762346
Email: fiona@bonfire.com.ph
Visit www.bonfire.com.ph


For those who are asking for the Screening of Pureza: 
SCREENINGS:


PREMIER (By Invitation):
Screening 1 – February 7, 2012 | 6:30PM, Cinema 3, SM Bacolod
Screening 2 - February 7, 2012 | 9:00PM, Cinema 3, SM Bacolod


BACOLLYWOOD | CINEMA REHIYON 2012
Screening: 6PM, February 11, 2012 at Robinson’s Place-Bacolod
Please contact Secretariat for Tickets - 0916 8782878


February 17
3 REGULAR SCREENINGS
(Open to the Public, Tickets at P 120.00)
Regular Cinema Hours at SM Bacolod, Tickets will be available at Cafe Uma


For schools, universities and large organizations, please contact NEGROS PUREZA FOUNDATION for screening.

Here's the full Trailer:

1 comment:

  1. nang tey for us working overseas. is there a website where we can watch this?????

    ReplyDelete

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