Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Brothers Launch Guam's First International Film Festival

In 2008 and 2009, brothers Don and Kel Muña were on the festival circuit promoting their film Shiro's Head. They played some international dates as well as LA's Asian Pacific Film Festival and the Las Vegas International Festival, garnering nice mentions in publications like Variety and Filmmaker magazine.

This weekend, the pair will oversee the inaugural of edition of the Guam International Film Festival as the event's co-founders. After putting together TV spots for the island's 2010 Gubernatorial candidates and running a videography business in San Francisco, this is the boldest move yet for these tireless boosters of Guam's growing indie film scene.

The program is a modest one; the lone world premiere for example is a $5,000 indie comedy, Anti Hero, made by a West Virginia bartender who grew up in nearby Saipan. But that's not really the point.

To the brothers' credit, they have lined up an impressive list of sponsors and made room in the shorts, documentary, and narrative programs for a whole bunch of fellow Guam filmmakers. Tellingly perhaps, the opening night attraction, I Heart Gu, is about a high school student who must decide whether to leave the island in order to pursue his dream of becoming a famous film director.

After attending Full Sail University in Florida in 2002, the Muñas went on to write a self-help e-book titled Why Go to Film School? I guess that means their educational experiences in the Sunshine State were not of the highest order.

[2011 Guam International Film Festival]

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