MANILA, Philippines – Actress Pilar Pilapil happily announced that her indie movie “Leona Calderon” was a hit at the recently held 12th Gwangju International Film Festival in South Korea.
“Leona Calderon” was the opening film of the Korean festival, which had the theme “Hope in Peace.”
“I was amazed by the reception of the foreign audience, including the international press, to our film. It was surprising. Everyone was congratulating me although I was nobody in Korea,” Pilapil said in an interview with The Philippine Star published on Tuesday.
“To begin with, 'Leona Calderon' was the very first Filipino film which opened an international film festival outside the Philippines. It’s already historic on our part,” she added.
Pilapil’s movie tells the life of Calderon, a composite fictional character based on a real-life overseas Filipino worker in London who has been working as a transient domestic helper for 36 years.
When she is diagnosed with uterine cancer, Calderon is faced with a dilemma of either returning to the Philippines and be with her loved ones, or stay in London.
“The Koreans were crying over the film although they would also laughed at scenes which were funny. There was a universal appeal of the film, as a matter of fact,” Pilapil said of the film directed by Filipino-Briton Jowee Morel.
“Leona Calderon” will have its premiere at the Gateway mall in Cubao, Quezon City on December 15 at 6 p.m.