Yes We Cannes
PhilStar Supreme interview with Erik Matti, Lav Diaz, and Adolfo Alix, Jr.
Aside from the prestige of getting into Cannes, what’s the biggest payoff of going to the festival?
LAV DIAZ: Libreng byahe. I don’t really attend parties kasi ang dami nyan eh. I watch films all day mga five to six films a day. Parang communion eh, it’s a tribal thing. Beyond yung mga fiesta na mga nangyayari, there’s cinema. Yung cinema naman ang nagcoconnect sa lahat eh.
ERIK MATTI: When it was announced that we were part of Cannes, the first thing that came to mind was it’s a chance to sell the movie. The prestige of that is malaki pero we all know that a lot of the Cannes entries are mainly art house. For us kasi as a company (Reality Entertainment, we co-produced (with Leo Po as executive producer) On The Job with Star Cinema, for us it’s the idea that we can bring a movie out there that will not necessarily just go around the festival route but could actually meet some buyers and have the buyers interested in getting something from the Philippines. But personally right before I die in my deathbed, I can claim I’ve been to Cannes. Masarap din yung feeling.
ADOLFO ALIX, JR.: Ako yung makapanood ng pelikula, yun yung bonus dun eh, yung makita mo kung gano karami yung way ng pagkwento ng isang pelikula. Yun lang yung opportunity na mapanood mo yun sa big screen. Yung kitang-kita mo. Makikinig ka ng diskusyon. For a week lahat kayo high sa pelikula.
When you go to film festivals, are you conscious that you’re there as a Filipino filmmaker representing the country through your film?
LAV: Hindi ka naman maco-conscious doon kasi it’s just there na you’re a Filipino and your cinema is from the Philippines. Minsan kapag may mga Q&As napupunta doon.
ERIK: I always want the Philippines to be treated equally with the other countries meaning I don’t want my movies taken into the festival just because it’s exotic. Just because para siyang in a banquet, may foie gras but it would be nice to put balut on the table. Ayaw kong tratuhing balut yung pelikula ko (laughs). It’s not about being cocky pero gusto ko lang talaga na competitive tayo. My attempt [has always been] that if you put it side by side with a Brazilian movie, a Korean movie hindi naman tayo dehado. They know that we don’t have that budget but when they look at it, they’d say, ‘This can pass as a movie that everyone else can view.”
Words by DON JAUCIAN
Adolf Alix and Lav Diaz shot by SHAIRA LUNA
Erik Matti shot by JOSEPH PASCUAL