Vilma Santos wins best actress award in Bangladesh

MANILA, Philippines  Veteran actress Vilma Santos was awarded Best Actress in the 13th Dhaka International Film Festival (DIFF) held January 10 to 18, in Bangladesh, reported The Dhaka Tribune.

Santos won for her role in Jeffrey Jeturian's Ekstra, a dramedy about the life of movie extras. The film, which competed in local film festival Cinemalaya 2013, was Santos' first dive into the independent film scene. She also picked up the Best Actress award at this festival. 

In the film, the Star for All Seasons played Loida Malabanan, a struggling bit player working at an out-of-town shoot for a teleserye. 

What would it be like for an accomplished superstar to play a leading role in a movie that's about an extra? In an earlier interview in July, Santos said the film's story appealed to her because she never experienced being a bit player.

"I wanted to do this film as my tribute to them,” she said.

Ekstra was among 22 films that competed in the Australasian Film Section, which featured entries from Bangladesh, Australa, India, Iran, Turkey, and South Korea, among others. The festival as a whole screened around 150 films from 50 countries.

Another entry from the Philippines, Michael Christian Cardoz's Our San Antonio, was included in the Shorts and Independent Section. 

The 2013 DIFF highlighted the theme "Better Film, Better Audience and Better Society," in its goal of promoting a "healthy cine-culture" in Bangladesh and of celebrating "the global mainstream in film and its social relevance."

Watch the trailer for 'Ekstra' here: