As you may have heard, a few days ago a massive 7.2 earthquake hit the Bohol Province of the Philippines, where AMIGO was filmed. Many of the cast and crew members of AMIGO have been affected by this catastrophic event.
“The 7.2 magnitude earthquake that hit Bohol and other areas in Central Visayas is now recorded as one of the deadliest in our recent history, with the death toll at over 170 and rising. Hundreds of residences – including centuries-old houses of worship — were reduced to rubble, with the earthquake’s force likened to 32 atomic bombs (about 640,000 tons of TNT) according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology.” — The Philippine Star (click here for full article)
RELIEF OPERATIONS. Members of Philippine Coast Guard are sorting out ten thousand sacks of relief goods intended for the victims of the Visayas earthquake. Photo by Jose Del, via Rappler.com.
John and Maggie have heard from friends in the Philippines that Maribojoc, the town where AMIGO was shot, is devastated. The houses that we used as stand-by areas were damaged, including the Baranggay chapel in Toril, which was used as holding area. Because of the enormous property damage, hundreds of thousands of people in the area have been displaced. Niño Talinda, a production assistant on AMIGO and the production manager of the Baryo Amigo Cultural Troupe, was almost buried alive in a landslide that killed his mother and a little girl, and unfortunately Niño’s is not the only family that has suffered injury and loss. Friends in the area report that they are still experiencing aftershocks in Toril, even now, and that they have nothing left to eat. There are wide-spread total power outages, and bridges leading into communities have collapsed, leaving people stranded. The citizen of Bohol need tents, water and food.
In order to help, Maggie and John are teaming up with the University of the Philippines Film Institute to raise awareness and supplies with benefit screenings of AMIGO. These screenings will raise funds, as well as serve as a drop off location for relief goods and monetary donations.
Joel Torre, who starred as Rafael in the film, is rounding up other cast members for their help in promoting the benefit screenings. Airlines flying into Tagbilaran are shipping donations for free.
If you would like to donate from overseas, the most trusted way we currently know of is through the Philippines Red Cross (click here for donations page), though there is no way to specify that your donations go directly to Bohol. If we find out a more direct way for our friends outside the Philippines to reach out to the victims of this tragedy, we will let you know immediately.
While the dates of the benefit screenings are not yet set, hopes are that the first showing will be this weekend (in order to raise badly-needed immediate supplies), and a second will be held the first or second week of November, to give the organizers more time to publicize. As soon as the dates are set, we will confirm them here and on the John Sayles and AMIGO social media channels.
The hashtag #AmigoParaSaBohol (Amigo For Bohol) came into use on Twitter yesterday, and searching for that hashtag will be the best way to find up-to-the-minute details about the benefit screenings. We will also be posting information here, and on the John Sayles and AMIGO social media channels. In the meantime, please keep the wonderful people of this amazing region in your thoughts and hearts, as they begin to rebuild their communities.
Members of the AMIGO cast and crew
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