MANILA, Philippines -- A Filipino independent film won at the recently concluded Deauville Asian Film Festival in France.
"Bahay Bata" (Baby Factory), directed by Eduardo Roy Jr., won the Jury Prize at the competition, which focuses on films from the Asian region. The festival ran from March 7 to 11.
Jury president Elia Suleiman presented the award to Roy and Almond Derla, the film's executive producer, according to an article on The Philippine Star published on Tuesday.
"Bahay Bata," which is Roy's first feature film, is the first Filipino film to compete for the said award. It is set to compete at the Las Palmas de Gran Canaria International Film Festival in Spain from March 16 to 24.
The film, written by Roy and Jerome Zamora, stars Diana Zubiri, Sue Prado, Mailes Kanapi, Peewee O'Hara and Jeoffrey Javier.
Zubiri has already won the best performer award from the Young Critics Circle for her performance in the film about a nurse working in a crowded maternity hospital.
US showbiz trade magazine Variety also praised Zubiri and Roy in its review.
"The dismaying spectacle of a wildly overcrowded Manila maternity ward during Christmas time is pitched midway between docu and drama in Eduardo Roy Jr.’s confident first feature, 'Baby Factory,'" Variety's review read.
"Roy, a veteran of Filipino TV soaps, has found his voice in feature directing by imbuing sudser conventions with a strong underlying realism," it added.