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‘Iti Mapukpukaw’ Makes History as the First Full-Length Animated Film to Win Best Film in Cinemalaya

August 18, 2023

August 18, 2023
See the complete list of winners in the recently concluded Cinemalaya 2023.

Held over the weekend at the Philippine International Convention Center, the awarding event of Cinemalaya 2023 was marked by the outstanding achievements of Iti Mapukpukaw, This is All Over, and Rookie. These films commanded the ceremony, each securing three victories within the full-length film category.

Recognizing the standout entries in its latest edition, Cinemalaya hailed Iti Mapupukhaw (The Missing) by Carl Joseph Papa as the Best Film in the full-length feature category and the NETPAC (Network for the Promotion of Asia Pacific) Award, with Dolly de Leon bagging the Best Supporting Actress.

Despite its “rotoscoping” animation style, Cinemalaya’s first animated film in nearly two decades deviates from the usual kid-oriented animated fare. The Filipino-Ilocano film features the story of a young animator named Eric, whose life went in unexpected directions after the appearance of a familiar alien and the passing of his uncle. These turns of events prompt him to recall his past and unravel his memories, thereby delving into the interconnections of sorrow and emotional distress.

In Carl Joseph Papa’s acceptance speech, the young software engineer and film director emphasized: “Gusto kong ibigay ito sa lahat ng mga ‘Eric’ na inalisan ng bibig at hindi nakapagsalita, para sa inyo ‘to. Nandito kami, nakikinig.” Referring to Carlo Aquino’s mouthless character in the film, he added, “I hope that the viewers become more aware that it’s not just a singular story—the story of Eric happens everywhere. I hope that the conversations initiated after watching the film will bring forth understanding and empathy.”

Cinemalaya 2023: Complete List of Winners

On the other hand, the queer film Rookie took home the Audience Choice Award and Best Editing, with actress Pat Tingjuy bagging the Best Actress Award. When This is All Over also won three awards, including Best Cinematography, Best Production Design, and Best Original Music Score.

Here’s the complete list of the winners for Cinemalaya 2023.

Full-Length Category

  • Best Film: Iti Mapukpukaw
  • Best Director: Ryan Espinosa Machado (Huling Palabas)
  • Best Actor: Mikoy Morales (Tether)
  • Best Actress: Pat Tingjuy (Rookie)
  • Best Supporting Actor: Bon Andrew Lentejas (Huling Palabas)
  • Best Supporting Actress: Dolly de Leon (Iti Mapukpukaw)
  • Best Screenplay: Gitling
  • Best Cinematography: When This Is All Over
  • Best Editing: Rookie
  • Best Production Design: When This Is All Over
  • Best Original Music Score: When This Is All Over
  • Best Sound Design: Tether
  • Audience Choice Award: Rookie
  • Special Award for Best Ensemble: Ang Duyan Ng Magiting
  • Special Jury Award: Ang Duyan Ng Magiting
  • Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC) Award: Iti Mapukpukaw

Short Film Category:

  • Best Film: Sibuyas Ni Perfecto
  • Best Director: Mike Cabarles (Makoko Sa Baybay)
  • Best Screenplay: Hinakdal
  • Audience Choice Award: Hinakdal
  • Special Jury Award: Hm Hm MhM
  • Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC) Award: Hinakdal
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