Ian Veneracion, ‘Bhoy Intsik’ win at Oporto festival in Portugal

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Ian Veneracion in a scene from 'Ilawod'; Raymond Francisco as 'Bhoy Intsik' (Photos from the films' respective Facebook pages)

Actor Ian Veneracion and Joel Lamangan’s “Bhoy Intsik” won big at the 38th Oporto International Film Festival in Portugal.

The 43-year old actor was honored with the Best Actor trophy for his portrayal of a website reporter who accidentally brings a vindictive water spirit that proceeded to wreak havoc in his home in Dan Villegas’ horror thriller, “Ilawod.” Villegas received the award on the actor’s behalf.

In a post on her Facebook page, “Ilawod” producer Joji Alonso was elated to learn of Ian’s victory and hailed him as “an underrated actor” and considers his performance in the film as “his best acting piece, to date.”

Director Dan Villegas accepts the Best Actor award of Ian Veneracion at the 38th Oporto International Film Festival in Portugal. (Photo from the Facebook page of producer Ferdinand Lapuz)

“Ilawod” is one of three Philippine entries in the film festival dedicated to “fantasy/science fiction/horror-oriented commercial feature films, auteur films and experimental projects from all over the world.” The other films were Prime Cruz’s horror romance, “Ang Manananggal sa Unit 23B” and Joel Lamangan’s petty crime drama, “Bhoy Intsik” which won the Special Jury Prize in the festival’s Orient Express section.

“To God be the Glory. Thank you [Joel Lamangan] for directing me in this wonderful film…Can’t wait to do another one with you…,” “Bhoy Intsik” lead actor and producer Raymond “R.S.” Francisco posted on Facebook.

Director Joel Lamangan and actor Raymond Francisco accept the Special Jury Prize award of ‘Bhoy Intsik’ in Portugal. (Photo from the Facebook page of Ferdinand Lapuz)

A surprise moment in the festival’s award ceremonies involved independent producer Ferdinand “Ferdy” Lapuz who also co-produced “Bhoy Intsik.”

Last year, another film produced by Lapuz, “Pamilya Ordinaryo” won Best Film and Best Actress in the festival. However, as Lapuz revealed, no one from the film was in Portugal to receive awards.

“I asked if they can be sent by courier but they said they are too heavy to be shipped which is true. I told the festival director that maybe in the next edition, there will be Filipino movies and maybe ask them to bring home the trophies…Two days ago, I sent them an e-mail requesting if I could have the trophies delivered to my hotel room. They said they have other plans which happened last night,” Lapuz narrated in a Facebook post.

Lapuz was given the 2017 trophies for “Pamilya Ordinaryo” in the awards ceremonies.

“There were no speeches and it was a straight to the point ceremony. I was the first to be awarded by no less than Mario Dorminsky, the festival director,” Lapuz further shared.