Friday, June 27, 2008

Big dreamer

A versatile entertainment writer and poet, LHOT is a PR writer for “Urduja” (the breakthrough animated film in the country today). She has been a good fiend of Kuris animators and would love to work with them someday for an important project. This time, we love to post one of her well-written PR articles for Urduja prior its showing date last June 18. We hope she could inspire you to be proud and believe in the talents of Pinoy animators.

URDUJA: A dream come true in Philippine animationUrduja

When a Filipino animator who did the background graphics for the hit Disney animation Finding Nemo included a bahay kubo in Nemo's aquarium, Filipinos all over the world basked in a collective sense of pride for such global display of Pinoy artistry. The word spread fast and most Pinoys found themselves looking out for that talked about nipa hut when they watched the film, either in its original cinema run or when it came out on video. A short glimpse of the bahay kubo was all it took, and Filipinos swelled with sheer pride for their heritage.

Truth is, Filipino animators have been involved in a number of Hollywood animated films for years but their contributions are rarely acknowledged and there's hardly any hype stirred among Filipino communities about them. But the time has come for Filipino animators to step into the limelight and showcase their talent in a breakthrough animated film that is purely and proudly Filipino – Urduja, the first full-length digital and traditional animated movie in Philippine history.

The brainchild of Mr. Tony Tuviera, Urduja is every Filipino animator's dream come true that is 11 years in the making and is born from the utmost dedication of hundreds of people who believe in the project and sacrifice their time, effort and resources to ensure that the final product will be something Filipinos can really be proud of. Running a total of 85,000 drawings shown in 1,922 scenes equivalent to 8,771 feet of film, Urduja involved around 400 Filipino animation practitioners in both digital and traditional fields in animation studios located in Makati and Palawan.

Three people who have been truly instrumental in encouraging Mr. Tuviera to persist with the project despite the countless hindrances in the 11 years of trial and error were his son, director Mike Tuviera; Mimbi Eloriaga, who has been overseeing the animation of the entire film; and director Reggie Entienza, who wrote the film's original script, was involved in the project's conceptualization and partly designed the character of Urduja.

For Mike Tuviera, Reggie Entienza and Mimbi Eloriaga – as it is with Mr. Tony Tuviera and all the animators and talents involved in the movie – Urduja is a dream come true, something they initially thought was impossible to achieve as a Philippine production but still pursued to give Filipinos a taste of a large-scale and world-class animated film that is truly and proudly theirs.

“We describe our Urduja experience as unbelievably fascinating,” said Eloriaga, who has 18 years of animation experience to her credit. “This project has been blessed from the very start. I wouldn't describe it as smooth sailing, but the opportunities have always presented themselves to further the project alone. Whenever we encountered a roadblock, there was always an immediate solution that led us out of the situation.”

For director Reggie Entienza, Urduja has also been a great learning experience. Creating the character of Urduja for the animated film, taking care not to pattern the story too close to the historical life of the real Urduja of Pangasinan but still retaining the warrior princess' remarkable quality of valor and loyalty to her tribe has been a tedious process and a notable feat in itself. With the help of director Mike Tuviera, they were able to write a story that has all the elements of romance, comedy and action that will make Urduja appealing to viewers of all ages.

Urduja features the voices of some of the biggest stars in Philippine showbusiness, with Asia's Songbird Regine Velasquez singing the movie theme song and lending her voice to the title role, along with Cesar Montano, Eddie Garcia, Johnny Delgado, Jay Manalo, Michael V, Allan K, Ruby Rodriguez and Epi Quizon.

This June, what had once been a far-fetched dream becomes an impressive reality as Urduja comes to all Filipinos of all ages in theaters nationwide.


Anonymous said...

wow she can write well. i havent watch the urduja...want to but the dvd later.

Anonymous said...

go pinoy animation!

Anonymous said...

ohh she... yeah she...