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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Jan 20, 2016

Jun Lana, One Filmmaker Who's Successful In Doing Both Commercial And Artistic Movies, Shares His Know How In Cine Panulat

JUN LANA is one successful writer-director who can do both commercial projects and prestige movies that win awards even abroad like "Bwakaw" and "Barber's Tales". Last year, he did for Mother Lily Monteverde the hit rom-com “The Prenup” with Jennylyn Mercado and the horror movie “Haunted Mansion” with Janella Salvador that’s a topgrosser in the recent Metro-Manila Filmfest. Aside from those, he did the explosive drama, “Anino sa Likod ng Buwan”, that won him best director awards in international film festivals in Russia and India.

Did he get a bonus from Regal for the huge success of “Haunted Mansion”? “Noong kumita ang ‘Prenup’, binigyan niya ako ng bonus na one box of siopao,” he says. “E, dahil mas malaki ang kinita ng ‘Haunted Mansion’, siguro two boxes of siopao na ang ibibigay sa akin ngayon. But she’s really so pleased sa pagiging hit ng ‘Haunted Mansion’ kaya pinagagawa na ako ng bagong projects with Janella. May storyline na nga siya. Gagawin na lang yung full script.”

Is it true he and LJ Reyes, who gave a truly bravura portrayal in “Anino sa Likod ng Buwan”, are no longer in good terms? “I don’t know what happened. We invited her to attend the screenings of the movie, pero hindi na siya sumasagot, e.”

Even if he’s now busy doing movies and TV shows, Jun continues to be a mentor to younger writers. “I’m thrilled to announce that CinePanulat, my screenwriting workshop, is back. Last year’s workshop yielded an impressive body of work from the participants, including Brylle Tabora's “Sekyu” which won 2nd place in the Dulang Pampelikula category of the Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature. Ivan Andrew Payawal's “I America” is now in production as one of the 10 finalists in the 2016 Cinemalaya Film Festival. And Jen Chuaunsu's “Sleepless” was a finalist at the QCinema International Film Festival. IdeaFirst, our company, produced “Sleepless”. Prime Cruz, also a workshop fellow, directed the film and it went on to win 2 awards at the festival: Best Actor for Dominic Roco and NETPAC Best Asian Film.

Perci also invited other participants of the workshop to join our production company and they now regularly write and/or direct for our TV shows. The screenwriting lab is completely free of charge, and open to all aspiring writers 18-40 years old. A full resumé with photo must be submitted to jrlworkshops@gmail.com on or before February 10, 2016. Please include information about any work experience related to writing for TV, Film and/or Theater, including past writing workshops attended. Selected applicants will be invited to the preliminary screening on February 21. Only 20 applicants will be chosen for the workshop. If you’re interested in writing movies, you can apply now.”