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Raymond Red returns with ‘Himpapawid’

By Rica Arevalo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 18:46:00 02/13/2009

Filed Under: Entertainment (general), Cinema

MANILA, Philippines?News about Raymond Red?s upcoming film, ?Himpapawid? (Skies) first came out on the website of Variety. Finally, after lying low in filmmaking for some years, Red is back. He set aside some ambitious ideas and tapped longtime producer, Roger Garcia, to collaborate on a project he describes as a ?call of the times,? which will use the latest Red One digital camera system (utilized by Steven Soderbergh for his latest film, ?Che?).

Alternative approach

Raymond shares: ?I was able to pull together different people who believe in me as a filmmaker. It gives me a different kind of ?high? to know that I have full creative control over my movies as I continue to demonstrate an alternative approach to filmmaking through coproductions.?

?Himpapawid? stars Raul Arellano as a desperate man trying to hijack a plane. It?s inspired by a news story that recounts an incident in 2000 when a man jumped out of an airborne plane using an improvised parachute to escape.

?The ultimate goal of many filmmakers is to show their movies to a wider audience or in bigger venues. The purpose is to communicate well. I believe in world cinema. All my ideas are rooted in Filipino realities. The material is relevant, and I want to share it with everyone,? adds the Cannes winner.

Why didn?t he cast a major star? He answers: ?I?ve always wanted to do a film with Raul. He?s talented and sensitive, and he?s insane! He now makes a living as a visual artist in the US.? Arellano was last seen in Lav Diaz?s ?Melancholia.?

Red thinks that the viewing habits of the new generation are changing. He explains: ?Moving images are everywhere: giant LCDs, iPods, advertising screens, supermarket videos, the Internet, video games and mobile media. We?re being bombarded with images!?

But, for him, there?s a down side to digital technology. He notes: ?Some independent filmmakers have become major players in Hollywood, but the problem now is that there?s too much content?there?s too much trash or clutter! It can very well happen to us if we?re not careful. So, here?s unsolicited advice to our filmmakers: Know your purpose!?

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