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Film about faith and love premieres in Manila

Church joins hands with filmmakers to hold down costs

Director Marilou Diaz-Abaya (left) and some of the casts of the movie Director Marilou Diaz-Abaya (left) and some of the casts of the movie
  • Hernan Melencio, Quezon City
  • Philippines
  • January 11, 2011
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The Archdiocese of Caceres and Star Cinema have joined forces to release a movie on Virgin Mary entitled Ikaw Ang Pag-ibig (You Are Love) which is slated for a pre-Valentine’s Day showing next month.

Archbishop Leonardo Legaspi of Caceres said ABS-CBN’s Star Cinema agreed to market the movie, which the archdiocese produced on a small budget, mostly from donations. The film premiered yesterday to a limited audience at ABS-CBN’s Dolphy Theater.

“We spent only 17 million pesos (US$385,312)” because most of the performers offered their talents for free, he told ucanews.com.

Award-winning Filipino filmmaker Marilou Diaz-Abaya, who wrote and directed the film, waived her fee and would only take a share if the movie proved profitable, the archbishop said.

Marvin Agustin, one of the lead actors, told ucanews.com his fee from the movie was “very minimal.”

The film, which took more than two years to make, stars Agustin, Jomari Yllana, Noni Buencamino, Shamaine Centenera, Ina Feleo and Eddie Garcia. It revolves around a family trying to cope with a series of crises.

The head of the family (Buencamino) has a second family and the daughter (Feleo) is a single mother. The family gets together when the son (Agustin), a newly ordained priest, is diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. They find themselves drawn to the Our Lady of Peñafrancia in the archdiocese to pray for her intercession. The prayers are answered, not so much by way of a miraculous cure, but by conversion, love, forgiveness, reconciliation and hope.

The film has been endorsed by the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines and given an “A” rating by the Cinema Evaluation Board that entitles it to a rebate in amusement tax.

Related reports
Movie to highlight role of Penafrancia devotion
Stamps to mark 300-year devotion to Virgin

PR12810.1636
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