Chito S. Roño's Signal Rock Is the Philippines' Official Entry to the 2019 Oscars

It won the Critics' Choice Award at the 2018 Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino.

(SPOT.ph) After winning the Critics' Choice and Special Jury Awards at the Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino that was held from August 15 to 21, Chito S. Roño's Signal Rock is on the road to getting recognized once again. It has been chosen by the Film Academy of the Philippines as the Philippines' entry for the Foreign Language Film category of the 91st Academy Awards (a.k.a. the Oscars). The Philippines' entry for the Oscars in 2018 was Mikhail Red's Birdshot.

The film stars Christian Bables as Intoy, who lives with and takes care of his parents in Samar. The family survives on the money sent to them by Intoy's sister Victoria (voiced by Judy Ann Santos), who has left the island to work as an OFW in Finland. But things go sour as Victoria decides to leave her husband and gets into a custody battle with him over their child. Intoy tries to help his sister all the way from Samar, but he only gets to talk to her through phone calls. And given that Intoy lives in a remote island-town, he has to go out to the rocks by the shore to get to talk to her because it's the only place with signal. (Hence the film's title, Signal Rock.) 

In a press conference for Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino, the creators revealed that the story was inspired by their personal experience. They were shooting a different movie in a place where only the rocks by the shore had signal. The screenplay was written by Rody Vera, who also wrote Die Beautiful and Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral. Roño, of course, is famous for his works such as Patayin sa Sindak si Barbara, Bata, Bata...Paano Ka Ginawa?, and Dekada '70 to name a few. The cast of Signal Rock also includes Elora Españo, Mara Lopez, Francis Magundayao, Sue Prado, Mon Confiado, Dido Dela Paz, and more.

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The 91st Academy Awards will be held on February 24, 2019.

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