Judgment Day for Tikbalang and KaCASA

Before the clock strikes 12 tonight, I would know two things:

1. Whether Neil Gaiman and whoever the other judges are would name our movie, Anak ng Tikbalang, the Best Short Film in the Fully Booked Neil Gaiman Graphic/Fiction Awards.

2. Whether resident members of the Communication Arts Students Association (CASA) have elected the candidates of my party, Partido KaCASA, to any or all seven posts in the CASA Executive Board for next year.

The movie was written and directed by my good friend Dek. When she asked me to manage its production sometime in mid-2008, I immediately agreed. The concept was fun and to be part of it was just something I couldn't pass up.

We made the movie specifically as an entry to the upcoming Fully Booked Neil Gaiman Awards, which opened the Best Short Film Category up only that year. More than a year passed from shooting and submitting Tikbalang to being notified that we made the short-list of nominees. Being short-listed meant that our movie had a one-in-ten chance of being best film by Neil himself. It also made Tikbalang eligible for the People's Choice Awards, which I've been actively campaigning for in the last few days on various media platforms - mostly thru text and Internet.

I went back to the den of tigers, UST, early last week to meet with our candidates. As it turned out, we've encountered a major bump in the road when our President and PRO were idiotically disqualified by the AB COMELEC. A petition to the university-wide COMELEC yielded favorable results when our candidates were finally allowed to run.

Anyway, my real purpose on coming back and meeting with our candidates was to train them in their speeches and give them advice, having been in their situation twice. I actually ran twice during my junior year - in June when I ran for VP-Internal and in March when I aimed for the Presidency. I won on both occasions.

The campaign was held late last week and the elections were done the past two days. Canvasing would be tonight and the results to be announced later.

So I'm excited and nervous but nonetheless calm about both results. After all, we've done our best. The rest is up to fate now and I can only hope that it would be so kind.

Thank you to everyone who supported our movie and our candidates.
Almost every KaCASA candidate from '04 to '07.
Photo from Lester.


Relaunching Fandom Live

Late last year, Dek, Tobie and Paolo came to me with a proposition to revamp Fandom Live for this year.

One of the most important changes was to favor quality over convenience. That meant taking the extra long route from shooting an episode to doing post-production.

Another change was to streamline the segments. That entailed lessening the number of hosts and maintaining regular and consistent segments. As opposed to having different styles, color schemes and whatnot for almost every episode.
One of those regular segments turned out to be We:View, which was ultimately assigned to me to produce, direct and edit.

One last important change was to finally settle on a home where the episodes would be hosted. After ustream and youtube, we've finally come home to Fandom Cafe.

At first, the idea seemed fantastic. It would mean I get to play with equipment, software and do what I've always loved to do: production.
Until the real world sets in, of course, and our audio won't sync with our video, footage get magically lost and ultimately our episodes (mine, in particular) get delayed. That doesn't even include taking the time to take the trip to Fandom Cafe and actually edit the videos because I don't have the proper equipment at home. Or the fact that we have to constantly sync our skeds so we don't burden each other.

So there are these problems that we're incessantly looking to avoid with each new episode that we do, even those that aren't assigned to me (Dek handles the non-we:view episodes).
Of course, all these setbacks get blown in the wind the moment we see the final product. Case in point: our We:View episodes for Avatar and 2012.

2012 was shot first as the supposed season opening because we couldn't shoot Avatar without Rocky who had more to say about the James Cameron flick. However, I felt that Avatar was a better opener because of all the gimmicks involved. So despite already having introduced 2012 as the first episode of the new season, I worked on and finished Avatar first. Despite the delays and spending almost a day on it, the result was just amazing. Not Avatar-amazing but it was definitely worth the effort and it deserved to usher in the new era for Fandom Live.

Behind the scenes, I'm thankful our current creative team hasn't gotten to the point of arguing and bickering with each other over details. At least, not on set, which, most often than not, is the Fandon Cafe mezzanine.

We actually argue our creative differences through emails but never to the point of taking things personally. By the time we start rolling, all of us are clear and united about what we want to achieve. Maybe because we have respect for each other's role in the production. During We:View shoots, Tobie acts as our headwriter and Dek is my second cam and cinematographer, and I let them do whatever. They certainly didn't question me when I decided not to release 2012 as the premiere episode nor when I asked for a certain shot to be done for Sherlock Holmes.

So that has been the experience so far with the first quarter of the new Fandom Live. We got more plans for upcoming episodes, so stay tuned.


From weBLOG to BackLOG

When I started blogging, it was because I wanted to share my stories, opinions and ideas. I had this delusion people cared about what I had to write about. I still do.

It's just that I don't know if people got busier or blogs just got cumbersome. Everybody seems to have migrated to the microblogging platforms of Plurk, Twitter, Facebook (to a certain extent) and Multiply (ironically enough). Even myself.

So I pretty much unraveled everything that I consider important and worth sharing these past few weeks in 140 or so characters (including spaces). Even me.

Having an EDGE-capable phone and a ping.fm account help me keep everyone abreast of what's going on in my life - not only in real time but on all my networks. That was certainly useful when I was stranded in Ermita during Ondoy.

Yet I feel that my new life stories still deserve the 250-word treatment. Why? Because while plurks, tweets, stat messages, notes, wallposts, shoutouts and quicknotes let people know I'm still alive, they make for less than ideal writing practice.

So now I have a list of blog topics that stretch back as far as January. Some of the things I'd like to cover are:

1. The Fandom Live relaunch
2. A certain wedding you may have heard of
3. A certain boyband concert
4. A certain musical recently staged locally
5. That whole career thing.

I'm blogging about blogging or lack thereof.