A Special Screening of Maalaala Mo Kaya
We were invited to attend a special screening of an episode of Maalaala Mo Kaya, organized by the ABS-CBN Foundation at the Shangri-La Mall Cinema last Thursday. We were happy to be joined by our colleagues from the Save Palawan Movement, who came in full force to support this particular episode, which was directed by the award-winning Brillante Mendoza and had, as its centerpiece, the beautiful island of Palawan.
The registration area was buzzing with activity as our friends from the ABS-CBN Foundation welcomed guests to the screening.
Armed with our seat assignments, Anthony and I proceeded to the cinema on the upper level.
Here, we share a few laughs with Save Palawan Movement's Raqui Garcia and Suky Lammoglia.
In my book, there is always time for a quick bite before a show.
If you gave me an entire platter of fruit kebabs, I will know EXACTLY what to do with it (wink).
We caught up with my folks and were happy to see that my mom came in her No to Mining in Palawan shirt. Anthony and I would have worn ours as well, if only they didn't get a little "snug" after a few washings. Honestly, I think I just put on a little weight. Hahaha!
When no one was looking, we raised our Quiche Lorraines for a quick toast.
As the program started, we were treated to a presentation on the history of Maalaala Mo Kaya (or "Will You Remember"), now celebrating its 20th year, making it the longest running drama anthology series in Asia.
ABS-CBN President and host Charo Santos-Concio introduced the episode, which was entitled "Tungkod," the Tagalog word for walking cane or, more appropriately, a staff, similar to the one used by Moses when he led his people to the promised land. As you will see from the story, there is an interesting parallelism there.
Multi-awarded actress Angel Aquino played the role of Salvacion "Bogs" Villanueva, a mother and farmer who started a campaign to stop mining in Palawan, despite facing challenges of a broken family and an impending illness that led to her blindness.
Aling Bogs' story is truly inspiring and is a beautiful testament to the strength of the human spirit.
After the screening, we were delighted to be joined by the real Bogs Villanueva, who reminded us that the fight against the devastating effects of mining on a fragile ecosystem is far from over.
ABS-CBN Foundation Managing Director Gina Lopez gave a compelling presentation on the sad, current state of mining in the Philippines.
Despite the huge investments of mining companies in the Philippines, why then is the country's highest incidence of poverty found in mining communities?
The rape continues.
I was happy to get a photo of Aling Bogs together with her onscreen counterpart, Angel Aquino, who turned out a powerful performance as mother and activist.
I made sure to personally congratulate Direk Brillante Mendoza, whom we got to know during our Biodiversity Caravan to Palawan last June and is best known for having won the Best Director Award at the 62nd Cannes Film Festival for his movie, Kinatay.
It was a reunion for me and actor Yul Servo, whom I haven't seen since I last worked with him in the late 90's. He appeared in the episode as Bogs' supportive and patient husband.
Members of the Climate Change Commission join Gina Lopez for a souvenir photograph.
Bogs was the main celebrity that evening, as people lined up to personally express their support and admiration for her strength and courage. Joining Gina Lopez and my mom are Lily Tanco of Cerecare Philippines and Kester Yu of the Climate Change Commission.
Save Palawan Members Suky Lammoglia and Dandy Gomez congratulate Brillante Mendoza for his masterful storytelling.
The campaign to collect ten million signatures continues, with our current tally now reaching two million.
If anyone is interested in getting some blank signature forms, please feel free to send me a message.
Cheers once again to ABS-CBN Foundation for a successful screening!
No need to worry if you missed the televised airing of the episode. You can view the full episode here. And for those of you who want to learn more about the Save Palawan Movement, feel free to visit our website. We strongly urge you to join us as we fight against the devastating effects of mining on Palawan and other key biodiversity areas.
Have a great and meaningful weekend, everyone!