“Emir,” an original full-length movie musical that pays tribute to the Filipino overseas worker by award-winning director Chito S. Roño won the Youssef Chahine Prize (Best Artistic Contribution) at the 34th Cairo International Film Festival in Egypt.
The film’s “music and cinematography were cited by the Film festivals jurors. The festival, which carried the theme “Egypt in the eyes of world cinema,” was held from November 30 to December 9.
“Emir” a production of the Film Development Council of the Philippines together with the Cultural Center of the Philippines, Viva Films, and supported by Manila Broadcasting Company is a one of a kind film presentation.
The film is a story of a young Filipina, who becomes a nanny in a royal household in a fictional emirate in the Middle East. As a loving yaya, Amelia forms a powerful bond with her ward, influencing and molding a prince who will someday become King.
Employing the musical genre, Emir sets itself apart from the usual Filipino movies being produced at the present. It boasts an immensely talented cast, including new ones such as newcomer Frencheska Farr, winner of the Who Will be the Next Big Star, who plays the lead role of Amelia. Emir features an ensemble of theater, film and television luminaries such as Dulce, Julia Clarete, Bayang Barrios, Sid Lucero, Gigi Escalante, Liesl Batucan, Kalila Aguilos, Beverly Salviejo, Melanie Dujungco, Bodjie Pascua and Jhong Hilario.
The film also features the magnificent landscapes and scenery of Morocco, where it was mostly shot, and that of Ifugao and Ilocos Norte provinces in the Philippines.
Based on a script by Palanca awardee Jerry Gracio, Emir is a unique and ambitious project featuring original music and lyrics by Gary Granada, Vin and Ebe Dancel and Diwa de Leon with Maestro Chino Toledo conducting the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra, Neil Daza as cinematographer, Douglas Nierras directing choreography and Digo Ricio as production designer.
“It’s very encouraging to hear that a Filipino mainstream movie has won in an international film fest,” said producer Digna H. Santiago.
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