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SMS student places 3rd in AGBO’s No Sleep ‘til Film Fest 2021

Article by: Alexandra Isabelle G. Delavin and Goven M. Barrera

Graphics by: Albert Dylan D. David

School of Media Studies (SMS) freshman Adam Dominic Dumaguin bagged third place in the No Sleep ‘til Film Fest 2021, AGBO’s first-ever filmmaking competition, with his film My House last April 18.

AGBO is an independent entertainment company led by award-winning Marvel directors Anthony and Joe Russo who revealed their reality-based 48-hour film festival for startup content creators via Instagram last April 8. Dumaguin competed with over 700 international entries that took on the festival’s prompt: “take something from our reality and bend it, remove it, twist it, or question it.”

Upon encountering a promotion for the short film competition on Joe Russo’s Instagram account, the young filmmaker recalled a pitch from his Senior High School film club and based his entry there. My House is a two-minute film that follows an unreliable narration of a young boy as he misinterprets his poor living situation. Dumaguin explained that his idea for the competition was inspired by the Camella Homes commercial with the famous Bulilit bulilit, ang liit liit jingle where a young girl confused her family’s new and spacious house over their previous crowded home. However, instead of creating the same concept as the commercial’s, Dumaguin chose to focus on the opposite.

"Instead of a girl confused with the reality of her big house, I made a boy confused with the reality of his cardboard house,” he elaborated. He added that his other inspiration was the current news as many overseas Filipino workers were displaced amidst the quarantine.

According to Dumaguin, the film’s concept was already established prior to the competition but the structure had yet to follow. Through YouTube, the digital film student researched Thai short films and applied their screenwriting and narration techniques including timing, characters, and structure to My House.

Having produced the film alone and with only his family members as the cast, he expressed his difficulties as well as the satisfaction of seeing the result. “Although it was tiring, it was gratifying after showing my family the film we made. Seeing them smile was enough for me,” the Mapúan filmmaker imparted.

Currently, the young film producer has no plans to join any other film contests. He aims to further develop his skills first and familiarize himself with his gears. From his unexpected victory, the SMS student shared the responsibility that filmmakers have in telling stories.

“Be good and tell stories that matter. Be the voice you want to hear,” Dumaguin emphasized.

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