The participants to the 3D Stereoscopic Cinematography and Filmmaking Workshop converged at the Film Academy office after lunchtime of Friday, March 18. After a long wait, the convoy left at almost 3 pm.
The bulk of the workshop participants at the FAP office before leaving for Matabungkay
The traffic was terrible such that the group arrived in Matabungkay by 7:30 pm. “Ginutom kami,” exclaimed veteran cameraman Arnold Alvaro, “buti na lang pinabaunan mo kami ng mamon.” (Author’s Note: I was supposed to give them 20 pieces but I inadvertently gave them all of the 35 pieces of mamon that left nothing for my family.)
Romulo Araojo, another cameraman, was very jovial on Saturday morning when I arrived. “Ang sarap talaga dito sa Matabungkay.” Clad in still wet swimming attire, Mulong was not referring to the beach but to the drinking session on the night before.
Romulo “Mulong” Araojo
Aside from the writing kit, the registration included a name tag. Lani Tolentino was complaining that her name was not neatly written. Tom Torres remarked, “Bagay naman sa iyo ang pangalang Lomi.”
There was not much incident except for the little delay in the start of the workshop due to the setup of the equipment. Oli Laperal of RSVP Film Studios came in full battle regalia with his 3D camera rig, lighting units and even a generator set.
Veteran cinematographers were all in awe, not by the high-tech equipment but because of the unmanageable weight. “Masyadong mabibigat ang gamit,” averred an old timer while pointing to the 3 people who were pushing the huge camera tripod.
The author beside the 3D camera rig
Some participants were somewhat disappointed in the long wait for the morning snack. When I asked Sioson’s wife, she said that there’s no snack because there was no more budget for that.
After breakfast, lunch na lang ang hihintayin tapos dinner na. Walang in-between,” complained a healthy-looking participant. To make up for that, a bag of candies was passed around. There was also coffee, the herbal type provided by the minor sponsor.
Breakfast was served while Isagani Sioson (standing) was confirming the day’s schedule of activities
Lunch by the beach was pakbet with fried fish. “Nagustuhan ni Oli ang pagkain,” Sioson proudly said. “Multi-millionaire yan ha pero kain siya. Kumuha pa nga ulit ng pakbet.” The fish, however, was hard to the bite.
The first day of workshop was capped by a shoot of a few sequences. With the preoccupation in the 3D camera, dinner was served at 9:30 pm and the day ended at around 11:00 pm. The shoot was delayed when the Briese Light overheated so it needed a cooling period.
On Sunday morning, everyone agreed to continue with the horror theme amid the daytime effect. And without a make-up artist in sight, a voice from the back suggested to have Mulong in the cast.
Anry Angela Bojangin with her horror look
Anry Bojangin, a student participant, readily agreed to be in the cast again for the test shoot. She would be a horror character, the opposite of White Lady. Together with Mulong, they would be a perfect pair to scare the audience.
But before the Sunday shoot, Oli Laperal gave some tips in handling the 3D camera. Laperal also asked Direk Jett Espiritu for a few words. After 30 minutes, Laperal had this writer texted to intervene in ending Direk Jett’s few words.
Film Director Jett Espiritu, holding a soda can, conversing with veteran cinematographer Arnold Alvaro
Direk Jett revealed that whenever he needs an idea, he goes to the toilet. He also gazes at the surroundings. “Noong naghahanap ako ng magandang comedy, sumakay ako ng Love Bus,” Direk Jett related. “Nakita kong nakasulat sa pader… basag ang pula. Ayun, ginawa kong title ng pelikula.”
Direk Jett also shared the story of his and his wife’s generosity. “Kaya sa dami ng nagawa kong pelikula ay wala akong naipon kundi ang bahay at lupa na tinitirhan namin. Yung asawa ko kasi pag nakahawak ng pera ay naghahanap ng taong tutulungan.”
Oli Laperal (in yellow) supervising the Sunday shoot
After the shoot, a simple game was conducted by the RSVP guys. Those who could discern the 3D images without using a 3D viewer stand to win RSVP souvenir shirts. There were 12 that were given away.
The simple graduation ceremony was held before 5 pm. Certificates, signed by FSC president Isagani Sioson and RSVP Film Studio head Oli Laperal, were distributed to all the participants.
The workshop, which was held on March 19 and 20, was supported by Janet Resort which provided the accommodation. Rolly Bernardo, the resort manager, was a former Production Designer.
Janet Resort manager Rolly Bernardo talking with some guests
Overall, the workshop was a great success with the major participation of the RSVP Film Studio. Oli Laperal was very adept in making things interesting amid the technical jargon. Proof of the pudding will be seen in the editing sessions to be held in the Makati office of the RSVP Film Studio.
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