Originally a thesis film submission, De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde Digital Filmmaking alumna Margo Manalo’s “Yakap” was selected to be part of Chéries-Chéris, an international film festival in France that focuses on cinema dealing with sexual identity.
“Yakap” is an LGBT story about “coming out of the closet,” to make the public announcement of one’s belief or preference that was previously kept hidden, especially sexual preference. The film aims to define the boundaries between tolerance and acceptance on different sexual identities.
“I wanted to write a different reality that LGBT people face since we usually see coming out stories that deal with two extremes: either your family is completely accepting, or they turn you away,” Manalo said.
“But the reality I knew was somewhere in the middle and I wrote it as a commentary on the kind of society we had where sometimes we just brush things under the rug and even though we’re called the most gay friendly country, discrimination still exists,” she added.
Manalo also shared her interest in entering more festivals to share her works to a wider audience. She then submitted her film as an application for the short film category back in July of this year. After hearing the news that her film got selected for the festival, Manalo expressed gratitude and fulfillment in her accomplishments.
“It feels really good to work hard for something and have it go far. It’s a humbling experience that’s teaching me to just work hard in everything I do. I’m inspired to keep creating,” Manalo said.
The annual international film festival will run from November 14 to 21 at cinemas Mk2 Quai de Loire and Mk2 Beaubourg.’
Movie poster from Margo Manalo