Indie film ‘Transit’ is Philippines’ official entry to the Oscars

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Transit_OscarsSurprise! Surprise! Surprise!

The Film Academy of the Philippines announced on Wednesday that Cinemalaya New Breed category’s Best Picture winner, “Transit”, was chosen as the Philippine entry to the Best Foreign Language Film category of the American Academy Awards for next year.

Hannah Espia’s “Transit” tells the story of Moises (Ping Medina), a Filipino single-dad working as a caregiver in Herzliya, Israel, who comes home to his apartment in Tel Aviv to celebrate his son Joshua’s 4th birthday. It was on that day that Moises, together with their Filipino neighbors Janet (Irma Adlawan) and her daughter Yael (Jasmine Curtis-Smith) find out that the Israeli government is going to deport children of foreign workers.

Shot mostly in Israel, the OFW drama swept most of the awards in the 2013 Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival.

It won a total of 11 awards, including seven Balanghai trophies for Best Film, Best Director, Best Actress (Irma Adlawan), Best Supporting Actress (Jasmine Curtis-Smith), Best Original Score, Best Editing and Best Cinematography.
It also won the Special Jury Award for Ensemble Acting, the NETPAC award and Audience Choice Awards as voted for by Cinemalaya audiences.

What’s surprising is that Transit was not among the nine shortlisted films earlier announced by the FAP for Oscar consideration. This list of contenders are “Thy Womb”, “On The Job”, “Supremo”, “El Presidente”, “Ekstra”, “Tiktik: The Aswang Chronicles”, “Tuhog” and “Boses”.

“Thy Womb” was tipped as the favorite to clinch the FAP vote considering the slew of international awards its lead star, Nora Aunor, and director, Brillante Mendoza, have won since it premiered at the Venice International Film Festival last year.

But now it has been confirmed! “Transit” will be Philippines’s entry to the Best Foreign Language Film category of the American Academy Awards for next year.

Executive producer Paul Soriano earlier announced that “Transit” will have its international premiere at the Busan International Film Festival in Busan, South Korea from October 3 to 12 where it will compete with 12 other Asian films under the festival’s New Currents section.

Below is Transit’s Full Trailer:

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