Brillante Mendoza offered to direct Duterte's first SONA
MANILA, Philippines – Award-winning filmmaker Brillante Mendoza has been offered to direct incoming President Rodrigo Duterte's first State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 25.
In an email to Rappler, Mendoza confirmed that he met with incoming Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar, who offered him the job. (READ: Director Brillante Mendoza urges Duterte to 'change' Philippines)
"Sa special screening lang ng Ma' Rosanabangit ni Martin yun," Mendoza said through email. "I was surprised when he asked me if I can [direct] the SONA, but I was happy kasi magkakilala naman kami ni Martin nun pa, at alam nya mga advocacy ko about film and culture."
(It was during the special screening of Ma' Rosa that Martin mentioned that. I was surprised when he asked me to direct the SONA, but I was happy because Martin and I have known each other for a long time. And he knows about my advocacy for film and culture.)
Andanar was present during an invitational screening of Mendoza's film, Ma' Rosa, which was part of the official selection at Cannes Film Festival this year.
"We will talk this week or after the inauguration about that. May mga ibang project din siya and hindi niya sinasabi sa akin (He has other projects, but he did not mention that to me) but he already asked for my help."
"Ok naman ako for as hindi ma-compromise ang creative freedom ko, I'm more than willing to help him (I'm okay with it and as long as my creative freedom won't be compromised, I'm more than willing to help him)," he said.
In an interview on Bandila on Tuesday, June 28, the incoming PCOO Secretary also confirmed that he approached Mendoza about the matter.
"Sana ay tanggapin niya ang aking imbitasyon na kung siya pwede mag-direct ng SONA ng susunod na pangulo," Andanar said.
(I hope he will accept my invitation to direct the SONA of the incoming president,)
Mendoza during the interview said, "Okay, why not?"
In a message to GMA News, Andanar clarified that this is just "a suggestion lang (only) that maybe he can direct it."
Mendoza also confirmed on Bandila that he was also approached by Duterte's camp to ask for suggestions on how to improve the country's independent filmmaking scene, as many of its products have reaped awards and recognitions in various international film festivals.
"Sana maging positive and magtuloy-tuloy din katulad ng this [outgoing Aquino] administration kung paano nila sinuportahan ang mga indie filmmakers," he said.
(I hope it will be positive and it will continue how this administration supported indie filmmakers.)
Duterte is set to formally take office in Malacañang Palace on June 30, Thursday. – Rappler.com