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Mike de Leon’s restored film ‘Itim’ headed to Cannes Film Festival

Charo Santos-Concio won Best Actress at the 1977 Asian Film Festival for her exceptional performance in the film!

Humility Javier
Humility Javier

5/4/2022 in News
Mike de Leon’s restored film ‘Itim’ headed to Cannes Film Festival

The 2022 restored version of Mike de Leon’s first feature film “Itim” starring Charo Santos-Concio and Tommy Abuel will be having its world premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival!

On Monday, May 2, “Itim” was announced to be part of Cannes Classics, a special lineup of restored classic movies, contemporary film documentaries, tributes, and masterclasses, as seen on the official website of Festival de Cannes. 

Also showing in the section are Jean Eustache’s 1973 Cannes Grand Prize winner “The Mother and the Whore,” Martin Scorsese’s “The Last Waltz,” Ethan Hawke’s “The Last Movie Stars,” Orson Welles’ “The Trial,” Vittorio de Sica’s “Sciuscià,” and a brand new 4K master of Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen’s “Singin’ in the Rain” among others.

The Cannes Film Festival, now on its 75th edition, is set to be a prestigious affair staged from May 17 to May 28 on the French Riviera.

In a report by ABS-CBN News, Mike commented on the selection of his film, “For personal reasons, this vindicates my long-held belief that you don't have to do poverty to get noticed, unlike in Lino's (Brocka) time. Especially if ‘Batch 81’ and ‘Kisapmata’ are released simultaneously with ‘Itim,’ e 'di puwede pala.”

Released in 1976, “Itim” bagged the first-ever Gawad Urian Award for Best Cinematography while Santos-Concio in her first lead role won Best Actress at the 1977 Asian Film Festival.

The supernatural film, which features a wealth of Catholic imagery, follows the story of photographer Jun Torres (Tommy Abuel) who meets Teresa (Charo Santos) in his hometown during Holy Week. As they pay a visit to Jun’s ailing father Dr. Torres (Mario Montenegro), Teresa begins to feel unease, leading her to arrange a seance.

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