Posts Tagged ‘Nelson Demetillo’


The First Film on Apolinario Mabini that Provides Deaf People Access to Information PREMIERED!

August 29, 2015


With Raymond Manding, President of the Youth Section, Philippine Federation of the Deaf [Right Photo]; John Baliza interpreted in FSL while I introduced the film. [Photo courtesy of Raymond from fb]. The screening was held at DLS-CSB ARG Theater, Taft Campus, Manila.

It was like a Deaf Awareness Week event when Deaf Filipinos in groups flocked to watch The Sublime Paralytic, our documentary on Apolinario Mabini, one of our great heroes. The turnout was for me unexpected. The reasons that I could think of are many: it is a film with interpretation in their own language — the Filipino Sign Language, and/or captioned for them in parts without; a film therefore that considered Deaf’s linguistic needs…a film that includes them; a film that shows and features their capacity and talent…

John Interprets

John Baliza, one of the FSL best interpreters in the country interpreted for me. [Photo courtesy of Cris Lorenzana]

The film is something that I made with Deaf Filipinos in mind and with full consideration to answer their need for historical information vital to their being as Filipinos. To all those who helped me in making this film possible, and to those who braved the heavy traffic on that day to join us, I thank you all very sincerely!!!


Closing Remarks by Leo Sulse

Premiere forum

Photo by Leah Osido courtesy of SDEAS


Group shot2_SS

The Silent Steps and Other Members of the Production Staff


Photo by Leah Osido of SDEAS

Group shot

[R-L]: Sophia Manlapaz, Makeup Artist Nelson Demetillo, FSL Interpreter Febe Sevilla, Mabini Reader Abner Manlapaz, Center for Education Access and Development Techie dela Torre with her daughter, MM and Raymond Manding of PFD after the film showing

The Sublime Paralytic which focused on Mabini’s disability, being an icon of Persons with Disability in the Philippines, and his burning desire to serve the country despite his condition, is to be followed by the Filipino narrated version entitled PULE: UTAK NG REBOLUSYON [PULE: Brains of the Revolution]. It tells more of Mabini’s foresight and insights re the coming of the Americans in the Philippines at the turn of the century, and what their possible intentions were before they even landed on our shores.

PULE is interpreted in Filipino Sign Language by John Baliza of DLS-CSB School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies. He is one of the best hearing interpreters in the Philippines.

For more photos shot by Leah Osido [Deaf] of SDEAS, visit their Deaf-e-news website


Shooting Rizal’s To The Flowers of Heidelberg Was a Reunion

August 27, 2011

It was more of a reunion! Yesterday’s shooting which started after lunch was rather tiring but we all went home happily because the day we spent together was more like reuniting with ‘old’ friends. The bonding strengthened. It was the third poem we shot for Project Rizal.

From right - Yuka, Rome, MM, Jenny

Even Yuka, old time friend, and Asiong film editing accomplice came over to join us. It was his first time to be at CSB and to be in a Deaf territory. Aldrin Gabriel, our Rizal for Ultimo Adios replaced Toby as production assistant. He was very helpful. Nelson Demetillo, our makeup artist was as usual at his best in making everybody laugh. He is a live wire, really fun to have around. The group will miss him when the project is over.

Rome practicing

Our shooting with Romalito Mallari who lost his being “Rome” the way I used to know him and perceived him to be, to become Rizal was very patient despite the many takes that I had asked him to do. I saw another side, probably the real side of Rome. I first saw him in 2006 when I studied Filipino Sign Language at CSB. He was one of the Silent Steps members who performed in the company of CJ Patriarca and Myra Medrana when I made my docu on Deaf Filipinos [Silent Odyssey/2008]. He was distant. But from our pre-production period last month until our shoot yesterday which lasted until 7.30 pm., Rome was different. He was funny; did many comic acts, at home with everybody. The work was tiring but fun. It was work and fun together. The aura of camaraderie was there; the spirit of advocating for a cause was strong. Working because you have to earn is common. I advocate for a cause, and working on my project gives me joy and fulfillment. The monetary compensation is not sufficient or too small for what they are / we are actually doing, they all know that. But still everybody’s there — more I guess because of working for fun and the higher aim of advocating for a cause, and doing something that has never been done before. Our project is the first ever interpretation of Rizal’s poems in sign language, and we can claim that our initiative IS the first in the translation history of Rizal’s poems.

It was the shooting of the FSL and Spanish versions of TO THE FLOWERS OF HEIDELBERG. And I would like to thank Romalito and Ms. Beatriz Alvarez-Tardio for joining us. By merely taking part in our film, they have joined our advocacy for information accessibility to thevDeaf and the Blind, and all those who are interested in Rizal and his works. When I told my team that Beatriz was coming, they asked me how she looked like. I said I had no idea. We just communicated via email. She was the first to respond to my call for readers


in Spanish of Rizal’s poems, forwarded to her by the cultural attache of Instituto Cervantes, Mr. Fons. It was only from Rex Flores, our PD that I came to know that she was one of the participants at the Rizal International Conference in UP last June. It was my first time to meet her last night. When I asked her what made her decide to participate in our project, she told me that she loves reading poetry, and she liked the interesting idea of having to translate Rizal’s poems in sign language.

Romalito Mallari

I wanted a lot of close ups — of Romalito’s facial expressions and the signing hands. Even then, I still feel I should have added more!!! I see it as an editor’s film because I want to play up with shots. It will be different from Ultimo that way. That’s my hope. That was preconceived. However, since I haven’t really found the pictures appropriate for it, I can’t tell how it will look like. But, I am sure — if there are no problem with the takes, no virus on the files, and the like — the interpretation will be as good and memorable as the first two other poems in FSL that were already shot.

I would like to thank PEN Learning Center — Ms. Techie, Giselle, Mackie and PEN staff for their full support; and of course, all the members of our team. For your information, our next shoot will be SONG OF MARIA CLARA with Jorelle and the Silent Steps for the tandem shots with the Spanish readers. Sked should be this September!!