In a personally surprising decision made by the Film Academy of the Philippines (FAP) Oscar Committee, APT Entertainment’s “Ded Na Si Lolo” (Grandfather is Dead) was picked to represent the Philippines in the Foreign Language Film derby of the Oscars slated for the 1st quarter of next year. It outvoted other local films shortlisted for consideration such as the curiously-titled-for-comparison “Lola” (Grandmother) by Cannes Best Director Brillante Mendoza, Maryo delos Reyes’ “Kamoteng Kahoy” (Sweet Potato), Mark Meily’s “Baler“, Francis Pasion’s “Jay”, Mel Chionglo’s “Bente” (Twenty), Chris Martinez’ “100” and Ronaldo Bertubin’s “Last Viewing.”
The Soxie Topacio-written and directed flick is a comedy about a hilariously dysfunctional family dealing with the death of their father (grandfather to the son of one of the siblings) and all the odd Filipino practices and superstitions that go with the 6-day wake and burial. It stars Gina Alajar, Elizabeth Oropesa, Roderick Paulate, Manilyn Reynes, Rainier Castillo, Dick Israel, Perla Bautista and BJ Forbes as the grandson who doubled as the narrator and whose character uttered the title. It was part of the Sine Direk series which was commercially exhibited on a limited one-week run a few months back.
Here is the official trailer of “Ded Na Si Lolo“:
video courtesy of YouTube/mhaye97
Director Soxie Topacio was both tense and amused when his film was selected by the FAP. He admitted that he initially rushed completion of the script (so he can comply with the requirements of DGPI – Directors’ Guild of the Philippines – for the Sine Direk series) before principal photography started. He also added that the shoot was such a breeze since everyone had fun while doing the same.
Here’s wishing that “Ded Na Si Lolo” achieves what its predecessors failed to do, i.e., make it to the Top 5 (or at least the pre-final shortlist) of the Oscar’s Best Foreign Language Award.