Independent film and 2012 Cinemalaya entry Santa Niña emerged victorious at the recently concluded ASEAN International Film Festival and Awards held at the Borneo Convention Centre in Kuching, Malaysia.
The indie movie directed by novice filmmaker Emmanuel Quindo Palo bagged the awards for Best Drama Picture, Best Actress for Alessandra de Rossi and Best Supporting Actress for Anita Linda.
The Philippine delegation that attended the glitzy awards night over the weekend was in high spirits leaving the venue with four trophies or the same number of awards won by the host country. Actor Jericho Rosales, who was nominated for Best Actor for the indie film Alagwa, was one of the presenters of the night. Though he came home empty-handed, the Kapamilya star was ecstatic for his co-star Bugoy Carino who won Best Supporting Actor.
Santa Niña was an unpopular entry to the 2012 Cinelamaya New Breed section amid its mainstream billing. Starring ABC-CBN prized talent Coco Martin and with Angel Aquino, Irma Adlawan and Nanding Josef as members of the support cast, the indie film only managed to secure the Best Supporting Actress plum for Anita Linda.
This is not the first time though that the film brought honor to the local cinema. Just recently, it was conferred with the Golden Crow Pheasant Award for Best Feature Film in the 17th edition of International Film Festival of Kerala in India. It is the highest honor given to a film in this annual film event.
The first edition of the ASEAN International Film Festival featured more than 100 films from Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, Philippines, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Laos, and even as far as USA, India, Russia, and Australia. It seeks to promote and encourage high standards in the film-making industry in this part of the world. It also aims to open the road towards cooperation and collaboration among participating countries in film production.