In This Present Lifetime

So much has happened since I wrote my last post. For one thing, I moved back to Manila. And one other thing, I became vegan.

So much of my life has changed because of these two events and this space here will chronicle my life as it happens as of this moment.

Join me as I venture this life now as Jaq, Vegan Writer. Some of you may not like it but I know most of you will embrace it. I want this to be a safe haven for people who want to take charge of their health, their lives and not wait for anyone to tell them what to do.

This will now and forever be a site that will take care of people, of animals and the environment. If you don’t agree, you don’t need to stay. If you do stay, I will always make sure it’s worth it.

Are you ready?

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The Katipunan Revolution Today

The Katipunan Revolution Today

I had a chance to finally watch the movie Bonifacio: Ang Unang Pangulo, directed by Enzo Williams. The movie illustrates how Andres Bonifacio fought for the freedom of the Filipinos from its corrupt conquerors. In the process, he also established the first government of the Philippines and became its first president.

Bonifacio: Ang Unang Pangulo

If you haven’t seen it yet, go and watch it when you have the chance. It is one film Filipinos should be proud of and should see because it illustrates what we need to remember as Filipinos. Everything about it was great, including its very powerful message. The film shows we should never be complacent and to always fight for our beliefs, which is a good question to ask. What do you believe in?

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And it’s a WRAP!

This article was written in different times, during pre-production, the production itself and few weeks after the last shot.

And it all boils down to this.

In two days, principal photography starts for my newest short film, Happy Five Years, and will continue for the rest of the weekend.  Happy Five Years is the result of a few life-changing moments that took place early this year. Everything was a blur and I didn’t know how to make sense of it all. I wasn’t sure how to figure out how to deal with all these issues and problems. There was only one way I knew how: to write. But more than that, I realized the only way to deal with all these issues is to direct a new short film.

I’ve been debating on a new story for more than a year but nothing seemed to be right. I always found something wrong with the story or I didn’t have money or work just got in the way. But this time, I believe everything that happened to me, happened because it was the perfect story and the perfect time for me to write and direct.

Read the rest of the article on our Facebook page.

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If you haven’t yet, please be sure to Like our page at Facebook.com/HappyFiveYearsFilm, follow us on twitter (happyfiveyears) and our pins on Pinterest (happyfiveyears)!

Happy Five Years in production

Pre-Production: End of Week 3

Man, oh, man, I am now starting to stress. There’s just so much to do! Hire crew, figure out and stay on budget, find a location, create script breakdown, rehearsals. And that’s just for pre-prod. Actual production and post-production are still separate!

But it’s okay. I’ve calmed down. I talked to my people and they’ve given me awesome pep talks and I know I’m meant to do this.

Tomorrow, I’m going to take another crack at the script and hopefully, that’ll be the shooting script. I’d really like the next edits to be at the rehearsals already.

But right now, I’m choosing to stress about one problem: the title. I’ve already changed it four times and I was quite happy with the newest one. But when I checked IMDb, there were already at least ten films with the same title. So I might change it again to a title that was unique or at least has only at most two other films with the same title. I can’t wait until the editing process to figure out the title though. I still have so much to do before that process even starts and I need a good working title for those things and plans.

I may have to go back to my vision board again.

Pre-Production

As of this writing, I am now currently in the pre-production phase of my latest short film. I’m rewriting my script, which started as a 9.5-minute film and will most likely end up as a 20-minute short. Let’s hope not.

I’m holding a cold reading session that also doubles as an audition this weekend. And it’s a pain in the ass. Seriously. Common sense? Not that common. I’m currently looking for a casting assistant to help me out because man, I cannot do it alone. I’m hoping to get a camera for the auditions but it looks like I’ll have to settle for a webcam and a laptop to record the auditions.

I’m using the entire month of June for rewrites and meetings with my producer. Yes. I have a producer. I am no longer producing, writing and directing my projects. I will be writing, directing and co-producing it. Yeah. I can’t not produce it.

Next month, I’m going to have to recruit the rest of my crew, rehearse my actors (good thing I only have 2), get a location and finalize everything. I plan to shoot the film in early August so I can’t dilly-dally.

It’s exciting though, pre-prod. But man, oh, man, it’s still scary.  But it’s the good kind of scary. I’m looking forward to the final product, which I’ll be shopping around to festivals and use as my ticket to create a feature film based on the same premise.

Wish me luck!

Your Good Friend (2012)

As much as I love to write, I love filmmaking even more. There’s nothing like seeing your movie up on the big screen, in front of an audience (i.e., people you know and don’t know), and have the audience receive your movie the way you intended them to receive it.

And more than that, I love it when I see my friends (who are also filmmakers) reach for their dreams and come out on top.

Back in San Francisco, I was fortunate to work with one of the best screenwriting and directing teachers I’ve ever had. I loved how he pushed me to surpass my boundaries and consider perspectives that have never even crossed my mind.

Your Good Friend

Directed by Matthew Jacobs

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New Year’s Resolution

Can you believe the first month of 2012 is already over and it’s already February? Seriously, how is time flying by so fast?

It’s been a crazy first month for me though. So much has happened, both good and bad. And I don’t mind because I said goodbye to January 2012 with no regrets. And there’s one reason for that. I made a New Year’s resolution.

Yes. I made a New Year’s resolution. I never do that, make resolutions, because I think it’s pointless. But last December, everything that’s happening and everything that’s about to happen may get overwhelming. And I want to be ready to face everything that comes my way. But I needed a plan. Enter: New Year’s resolution. You want to know what it is? Here it comes.

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