Filipino scriptwriters tackle ‘untold stories’ in films

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(Photo by Hazel Grace S. Posadas/The Varsitarian)

SOME of the country’s top scriptwriters tackled the relevance of untold stories in Filipino films during a discussion at UST Central Laboratory auditorium last Nov. 16.

“The sincerest and most enjoyable [films] are those that have unheard small stories. Grandeur scripts are not always good. Consider those simple stories that can also have the same effect as those of extensive stories [when it comes] to conveying a message,” said director and scriptwriter Dwein Baltazar.

Among Baltazar’s films were “Oda sa Wala,” which bagged the Best Film and Best Screenplay at 2018 QCinema International Film Festival.

Palanca-winning author Jerry Gracio urged budding writers to refrain from using “unnecessary plot twists.”

“The plot is not moving because of the plot twists. It is usually driven by the characters,” said Gracio.

Gracio won the 2018 Famas Best Original Screenplay for “Balangiga: Howling Wilderness.”

Palanca hall of fame awardee Rody Vera said writers should include their “takeaways” or insights from their personal experiences.

“For someone starting to write, it’s good that experiences are included. But sometimes it is not just about the experience. It’s also about the insights. The writer must also write about the lessons from those experience,” Vera said.

One of Vera’s film scripts was “Die Beautiful,” which won the Best Screenplay in 2016 Film Academy of the Philippines Awards.

Among the speakers was Auraeus Solito who directed the movie “Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros,” the first Filipino film nominated for Best Foreign Film at the Independent Spirit Awards in the United States.

The event, titled, “Silip sa Iskrip” was part of the USTingan series organized by the UST Center for Creative Writing and Literary Studies.

USTingan is a semestral gathering where writing, publishing, and pop culture are discussed.

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