February 25, 2007

I rarely watch TV except when I would like to be updated on the latest news or a crafty documentary caught my fancy. You see, once I start deskwork (this includes lots of writing but mostly readings), I hate to part from my desktop. But if there’s a program that I would like to watch, I make sure that I set my alarm.

Last Saturday, just before our informal poetry discussion, prize-winning writer Christine Bellen sent an SMS telling me that her ‘Ang Mga Kuwento ni Lola Basyang’ published by Anvil is being serialized in GMA-7 every Sunday right after ‘S-Files’. Now I am sure I did not tune in so just I could take a peek on Hope, the third-party in the recent Kris Aquino love triangle issue.

Today’s episode was ‘Ang Binibining Tumalo sa Mahal na Hari’, about how a young girl’s wit and self-confidence earned her the right to royalty, becoming the bride of a prince. This was after the King, disgusted with the idea that his son was intending to marry a woman of lowly birth, sought for the poor girl and gave her impossible tasks. Should she fail, it was the end of her. But of course, she was able to outwit him each time.

I find the story moving and inspiring. In fact if ever I will have a daughter, I might as well name her after the protagonist, Sharay.

Sharay Chancoco, cool sound eh? Sharp and yet sweet, like a Samurai.

I pray TV programs like ‘Ang Mga Kuwento ni Lola Basyang’ will increase. Children’s Literature, penned by esteemed Filipino writers like Christine Bellen ought to have a place in mainstream Philippine media. Years ago, poet Jerry Gracio was the scriptwriter of ABS-CBN’s ‘Pahina’. I remember, I would wake up early during Saturdays just to catch it before proceeding to our LIRA workshops. It sort of inspired me to brave the clean cut critiques of my fellows and mentors there. And so I survived.

I heard some people are toying or working on the idea of making Ibalong into a full-length animated film. I think this will work because we have so many talented animators and competent writers here in Bicol. If given proper support and funding, I think this project will succeed.

One thing more, on March 1, 9 a.m., multi-awarded film ‘Kubrador’ will be shown in Bichara Theater. I saw my writer-friend and co-film orgy Meyor Sanchez during the Mundag Literary Awards. He was arranging with the Media Studies Department of Ateneo de Naga for the project. Now I think there should be more of this in the future, with more films and not just one.




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