Dominican province produces first film on St. Dominic’s life

Posted By: Chris On:

MANILA, Dec. 13, 2010—The Dominican Province of the Philippines gave life to St. Dominic de Guzman through the production of the first ever feature film on the extraordinary life of this saint, titled “Dominic: Light of the Church”.

The premiere showing was held at University of Sto. Tomas’ Medicine Auditorium at 5:00 p.m. on Dec. 11.

Fr. Quirico T. Pedregosa, Jr., O.P., Prior Provincial of Dominican Province of the Philippines led the premiere viewing of the film.

The movie is a gift of the Dominican Province of the Philippines to the Dominican Order as it celebrates its 800th anniversary come 2016.

Fr. Pablo T. Tiong, O.P., Vice-Rector of the University of Sto. Tomas delivered the welcome remarks.

“Any sincere effort to bring to life a story of a saint… can be vital to spiritual growth,” he said.

Tiong added it is not only to employ these modern means of communication that the film was produced but it is a ‘devotional vocation.’ It is in this devotional spirit that he welcomed the audience.

Fr. Christopher Jeffrey Aytona, O.P, the film’s executive producer, in his message said it was similar to the multiplication of the loaves, the sharing of resources that the film came to be realized.

He said the film is also in line with the preparation of the fortieth anniversary of the Dominican Phils. Province in Dec. 2011.

“The purpose of the film showing is to introduce St. Dominic again. When you watch a movie especially an autobiographical one, he becomes alive especially when you watch it in a big screen. St. Dominic’s spirit is very much alive in us but we want to see him moving,” he said.

“The Dominicans all over the world helped us financially. It was a divine providence,” he further said.

The movie was the first Filipino film given support by Film France commission.

Two years in the making

The movie is an effort of home grown talents being a thirteen man film composed of all Filipinos. The executive producer of the project, Fr. Christopher Jeffrey Aytona, O.P. and neophyte film director, Fr. Marcelino Saria, O.P. led the artistic team together with the associate director, Marinette Losanta and director of photography and editor, Lauro Rene Manda.

The film was two years in the making. The team directed themselves in the revision and finalization of the script, treatment of the story, and making of mock-up props very much alike the Medieval tools and fixtures. The ocular preparation was on Aug 2009 in Spain, France and Italy. The shooting of the film ran from July to August this year.

All actors and actresses are Spanish, French and English who perseveringly portrayed their roles to give a picture of the life of St. Dominic and how the Dominican Order came into being.

St. Dominic as portrayed in the film is described for his selfless love for his brothers and sisters especially to those who need help the most, the oppressed and the lowly.

The verse in Matthew resonates in the film as a conviction of St. Dominic, the words of Jesus to his disciples, “…whatever you do for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you do unto Me.”

On his deathbed he said to his brothers, “Do not weep, I shall be of more use to you after death than I ever did in life.” (CBCPNews)

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