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Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Jowee Morel, controversial director

Did you know that uncensored (mostly indie) films have been temporarily suspended from being shown at the UP Film Institute by MTRCB chief Ma. Consoliza Laguardia? For a long time, the Institute was the venue of the “uncut” in the name of academic freedom.

Among those whose attention was called (and were almost slapped with a court case) was new director Jowee Morel whose film, Strictly Confidential (a 2009 documentary), got the ire of Laguardia (as did Adolf Alix Jr.’s Aurora and Monti Parungao’s Sagwan).

Showing of those films were rudely interrupted, leading to the suspension of th UPFI “uncensored” showings.

But the spirit and enthusiasm of direk Jowee is hardly dampened.

“I feel all the more challenged,” said direk Jowee whose other film, the Iza Calzado starrer Mona Singapore Escort, was cut up not by the MTRCB but by the producer that, according to direk Jowee with a shrug, “I didn’t recognize it anymore,” adding with a wry smile, “first full-commercial film ko pa naman.”

His other works are: EC2LUV (a film docu featuring unknown actors, 2005), Mga Paru-Parong Rosas (retitled Pink Butterflies when it was shown at an international Pink Festival for gay-themed films, 2006), When A Gay Man Loves (docu, 2007), Latak (Residue, feature film, 2008), Moving Dreams (docu, 2008) and hiStory (docu, 2009).

His being “strictly controversial” is accidental.

Born in Cebu to a British father and a Filipino mother on Nov. 8, 1969, direk Jowee was a London-based recording artist who started his film career writing and directing shows in London’s West End. He describes himself as “a naturalist who believes in the intrinsic goodness of man but a pragmatist in dealing with the frailties of humans.”

“The world is my school,” said direk Jowee who has travelled to every nook and cranny of his “school.”

He added that he is committed to making films that provoke, cultivate, enlighten and probably entertain.

And, in the process without his meaning to, earn the ire of the country’s “guardians of public morality.”

That’s why he is “strictly controversial.”

[via]

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