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Black Sheep’s ‘Black to School’ Inspires Budding Storytellers in UP Baguio

ABS-CBN Films’ Black Sheep brought its “Black To School” scriptwriting workshop to the University of the Philippines – Baguio’s Palihan Series for a two-day learning experience where fledgling filmmakers and storytellers got to learn from the creative team behind the millennial-oriented films produced under the young film outfit.

About 150 participants from different high schools and colleges in Baguio and nearby provinces enjoyed a film screening on the first day, featuring Dwein Baltazar’s “Oda sa Wala,” the film that saw Pokwang portray her most serious role to date—an old maid whose life changed after meeting a mysterious corpse.

After the screening, the attendees took part in Dwein’s scriptwriting exercises, and were able to dive deeper into the filmmaking approaches of Black Sheep through a roundtable discussion with the creative team.

The panel included Dwein, Black Sheep’s creative director Kriz Gazmen, creative supervisor Jensen Garcia, creative supervisors and scriptwriters Katherine Labayen, Patrick Valencia and Kris Ann De la Peña, advertising and promotions head Shinji Manlangit, and producer Nailen Garalde.

Kriz emphasized the need for a broad mind when learning the art of filmmaking, saying that there is no one beautiful way of making films. “So there’s no one way, so you have to learn whatever you can from every insight you’re hearing here. Because even us, we have different proof of talks when it comes to filmmaking,” he said.

Meanwhile, it was all about the process of creating and producing films during the second day, as the Black Sheep team spoke about the conceptualization and pitching of stories.

After the talk, the participants were divided into more than fifty pitching groups, where they got to present their fresh visions to the creative team of Black Sheep. The deemed best pitches have a chance to be further developed by the film outfit.

Aside from the beneficial discussions and exercises, the Black Sheep team also donated three of their scriptwriting books to the UP Baguio library to aid students in honing their craft and developing their passion for filmmaking. The group also signed copies of the book versions of its movies “Alone/Together,” “Isa Pa With Feelings,” and “Exes Baggage.”

One of the film outfits under ABS-CBN Film Productions, Black Sheep focuses on creating alternative content for the new breed of Filipino audiences through its more grounded and personal narratives. The scriptwriting workshop in UP Baguio was its first Black to School event offering inspiring talks and creative workshops for students who are interested to venture into filmmaking.

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