Loren & Brillante Team Up for ‘Taklub’

May 2, 2015

Senator Loren Legarda and 2009 Cannes best director Brillante Mendoza’s latest collaboration to promote disaster risk reduction (DRR) will be screened in this year’s Le Festival International du Film de Cannes.

The more than two-hour long Taklub, a feature film starring Nora Aunor, has been selected to be in the official selection under Un Certain Regard , a section of the 68th Cannes International Film Festival, which will be held from May 13 to 24.

Legarda and Mendoza have worked together in the past in documentaries on environmental protection, climate change adaptation and DRR.

“Following the disaster caused by Super typhoon Yolanda, I thought we had to do something to further raise awareness on the need to be prepared for disasters and build resilience,” said Legarda, UN Champion for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation for Asia-Pacific

After producing several documentaries (Buhos, Ligtas, Philippine Marine Biodiversity, and Antique: Coral Restoration Program) together, Legarda and Mendoza thought that a full-length film could be an effective medium to mainstream disaster prevention and preparedness.

“Sometimes you have to ignite emotions so that people would remember a lesson in life. There are a lot of lessons to be learned in the tragedy that was caused by Super typhoon Yolanda and that is what Direk Brillante shows in Taklub,” says Legarda.

“What amazes me is his brilliance, his creativity. I am impressed with the way Direk Brillante combined drama and DRR (disaster risk reduction). In fact, the film features DRR measures such as early warning systems, mangrove reforestation, preemptive evacuation, and designating no-build zones. We are bringing not only our best director and artists in Cannes, but also these lessons on preparedness and resilience, which hopefully would be heeded,” she added.

Taklub tackles stories of Yolanda survivors and how they try to cope with the tragedy through faith, hope and letting go.

Meanwhile, Nora Aunor, who worked with Mendoza in Thy Womb (2012) that won for her the Bisato d’ Oro (Best Actress) at the Venice Film Festival and several awards for Mendoza including the Golden Lion nomination for Best Director at the same festival, says she is glad to be in the film. Mendoza said Aunor immediately said “yes” when he pitched to her the project.

Aunor plays one of the survivors of the typhoon that decimated Tacloban. The story focuses on her search for her three lost children who all were swallowed by the storm surge that enveloped the city.

In the vernacular, Aunor says, “I could feel the survivors grief as they scoured every corner of the city looking for signs or clues of their missing loved ones. I hope help for the survivors wouldn’t stop even if it has been several years since Tacloban had been devastated. The pain of those people who survived the nightmare will continue to haunt them.”

Legarda is glad that Aunor has lent her talent as an actor to this project that she hopes would make more people aware of the vulnerability of the Philippines to natural calamities, most especially typhoons.

The film was produced by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in cooperation with the Presidential Communications Operations Office-Philippine Information Agency (PCOO-PIA).

Manila Standard Today