By Andrew Jonathan S. Bagaoisan
(First published on ABS-CBNnews.com as “5 ABS-CBN entries at New York Festivals”)
(UPDATED) Five television entries from ABS-CBN are vying for medals among the “World’s Best” as finalists in the 2014 New York Festivals (NYF) International Television and Film Awards.
Leading the pack are programs by the network’s Integrated News division.
The investigative documentary “Agosto Beinte Uno: Ang Pagpatay Kay Ninoy Aquino” by ABS-CBN Docu Central earned two nominations in separate categories.
The Jaime Fabregas-narrated special, which revisited the still-unsolved Aquino assassination case and the people involved in time for the 30th anniversary of the shooting, is a contender for the Biography/Profiles category.
Last year, the full-length profile of Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile entitled “Johnny” won the ABS-CBN documentary team a Silver World Medal in the same category.
“Agosto Beinte Uno” was also recognized for its opening billboard and graphic design, which was produced by The Acid House for ABS-CBN.
Two other ABS-CBN current affairs shows got a nod from the 2014 New York Festivals as well.
Anchor Ted Failon’s follow-up probe on the environmental effects of mine tailings from PHILEX quarries in Benguet for the issue-driven newsmagazine “Failon Ngayon” is competing in the Current Affairs category.
Failon’s previous investigation of toxic mining spills was also a finalist in the previous NYF.
An episode on elephants made informational program “Matanglawin” a nominee in the Educational/Instructional category. While visiting Mali of the Manila Zoo, host Kim Atienza tackled the debate over the elephant’s more-than-30-year stay in the country.
Meanwhile, ABS-CBN’s Integrated Creative Communications Management (CCM) is eyeing an award in the green promotion for its plug of the One Run, One Philippines event.
The ad, dubbed “Sprout,” features computer-generated greenery emerging throughout the country as a result of the environment-oriented race.
In 2013, CCM scored a Gold World Medal with “A Call to Arms: Lakas Pinas,” an ethnic-inspired promo of ABS-CBN Sports’s coverage of the 2011 Southeast Asian Games.
Aside from ABS-CBN, competitor GMA Network has 11 entries in the NYF that include breaking news coverage of the Misuari-MNLF siege of Zamboanga City, public affairs programs, a children’s show, a music video, and station promotion.
GMA bagged a Silver World Medal in 2013 for its documentary show “Reel Time.”
The Philippines’ 16 entries join hundreds of others from 36 countries competing in this year’s awards.
Also in the list of finalists this year are dramas like “True Blood,” “Game of Thrones,” and “The Newsroom” by HBO; CNN productions “Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown,” “Amanpour” and “Anderson Cooper 360”; and “The Bible” series by the History channel.
“Pagpag,” a movie by Filipino filmmaker John Paul Su of Eight Horses Production is among the nominees from the United States in the Student Film category.
The short film stars Bibeth Orteza as a 70-year-old who makes a living selling garbage food from a dumpsite. Poverty drives her to “audition” her granddaughter to prospective adoptive parents from abroad.
“Pagpag” has already made the rounds of various film festivals and earned a nomination in the 2013 Gawad Urian.
The NYF finalists will be judged by a jury of 176 media professionals from all over the world.
Three of the jurors are from the Philippines: newscast producer Engelbert Apostol, current affairs producer Ana Buita, and writer/creative director John Roque, all of ABS-CBN.
The New York Festivals advisory board includes a Filipina as well: Marissa Flores, head of GMA News and Public Affairs.
The “World’s Best” television and film productions will be awarded on April 8 at the annual National Association of Broadcasters gala in Las Vegas, Nevada.