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  • Writer's pictureMenchie Kinao

Abra film makes it to 2023 International Film Festival Manhattan


Abra, Philippines – A short film directed and starred by Abrenians moves a step closer to winning international awards after making it to the 2023 Film Festival Manhattan (IFFM).


Now in its 13th year, IFFM showcases a quality selection of world-class short films that will be screened at several theater venues in Manhattan New York City, USA by next month.


Abra’s own “Protected Hill,” written and directed by Dexter Macaraeg, the founder of Sine Abreño, will be showcased during the international film screenings of IFFM. This is just among the other films of Macaraeg that made it to the global stage.

In 2016, his short film “Balitok” (Gold) was awarded the Best Screenplay Bronze Award at the New York City Indie Film Awards (NYCIFA). His documentary film “Am-Amma” (Heirloom) won the Independent Achievement Award at the 8th International Film Festival Manhattan (IFFMNYC), and the Jury Award Movie of the Year (Advocacy/Documentary) at the 5th Urduja Film Festival Heritage Film Awards.


His latest short film “Protected Hill” is about a stubborn daughter named Marjorie portrayed by Genie Rose Mayugo Baylon who arrived in Abra in search of a protected hill. Marjorie met Christian played by Gabriel Balitnang who agreed to help her. As the day progresses they begin to learn more about each other and the life-changing significance behind Marjorie's journey unfolds.


The short film, according to the director, is inspired by his love for the environment where he grew up. This, he added, also shows how he values his family.


The trailer may be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AK8howwA-2o. It's world premiere will be held on Oct. 14, 2023.


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