Saturday, June 28, 2008

spicy pageant

Ms. Universe gets a doze of SPICE


NEW YORK, NY - June 24, 2008 – Paula M. Shugart, President of the Miss Universe Organization announced today that the host of NBC’s hit summer show, “America’s Got Talent,” Jerry Springer and actress/singer Mel B will host the 2008 Miss Universe Pageant live on NBC (simulcast on Telemundo) from the Crown Convention Center in Nha Trang, Khanh Hoa, Vietnam on Sunday, July 13th at 9:00 p.m. ET (delayed PT).

Cultural icon Jerry Springer, host for 17 seasons of the hit talk show "The Jerry Springer Show," as well as the host of "America's Got Talent," boasts a resume that includes such diverse roles as: Mayor of Cincinnati, political pundit, lawyer, award-winning newscaster, country recording artist, international emcee, TV personality, author, movie star, progressive talk-radio broadcaster and ballroom dancer on the hit "Dancing with the Stars." His popularity has also led him to be a favorite guest-speaker at college campuses across the country, not to mention a special guest lecturer at Oxford University in England. Springer has also added a Broadway appearance to his distinguished list of achievements, starring for a week in the production of the “Rocky Horror Show Live.”

"This is obviously a great honor and getting to work alongside Mel B makes it even better," said Springer.

Melanie Brown, better known as Mel B, has made her mark as an accomplished singer, actress, producer, designer and TV personality. Mel B became a household name as “Scary Spice,” one of the members of the iconic girl group the Spice Girls. She has appeared in numerous TV specials, shows and films as well as on Broadway in the hugely successful musical “Rent.” Mel B is currently working on her third solo album, slated for release in early 2009. Her newest project, “The Singing Office,” will premiere on TLC later this month, with Mel serving as Executive Producer and Co-Host. Additionally, she was a finalist on the fifth season of “Dancing with the Stars,” where she became a fan favorite with her dance experience and fun disposition on the dance floor. She has since become a special events correspondent for “Access Hollywood.”

“I’m thrilled to be a co-host of the Miss Universe Pageant,” said Mel B. “I believe the diversity and dedication that the pageant brings inspires and empowers young women across the globe.”

Each contestant, representing 80 countries from around the world, will be judged in three categories: swimsuit, evening gown and interview as they vie for the coveted title of Miss Universe 2008. The Miss Universe show is an internationally celebrated event with distribution in more than 170 countries.

Japan native, Riyo Mori, Miss Universe 2007 will crown her successor at the conclusion of the telecast. During her reign, she has traveled the world as an advocate for HIV/AIDS education, research, and legislation. The newly crowned Miss Universe will go on to do the same.

Donald J. Trump and Phil Gurin of The Gurin Company will again serve as Executive Producers for MISS UNIVERSE® 2008.

blogger's notes: After Ms. Universe, Mel B is set to finish her new album that would feature a collaboration with Janet Jackson--it's gonna be Spice meets Jackson. And yes, she's set to host a reality talent show at MTV with Joey Fatone of Nsync. Will there be another Spice Girls reunion tour in the future?...yes there is, Emma Bunton gave a hint in an early interview.

great artist passed away

Micheal Turner: comicbook’s greatest

When I started to love American comickbooks, there are few artists that caught my attention with their awesome artworks. One of them was Micheal Turner. One of the best of the best artists in comicdom ever lived, he resembles dynamic style, edgy details and sexual appeal with his works. Yesterday, while I was web-surfing around, I read an article about his death. I told myself that this was a hoax. But it’s not. It’s real, Micheal Turner, one of my inspirations to draw was dead at the age of 37. He took the final rest leaving only comicbooks legacies that younger artists would look up to. I was sad thinking that I would love to met him in person someday. But that dream is gone and I wish him eternal peace for his soul and his family.

American comicbooks and budding artists saw how great he was. He always give radiant life in his artworks which combined both modern and classical approach in drawing. Next to Jim Lee or Whilce Portacio, Micheal Turner is a legend. He has inspired me to chase my dream and that death itself cannot erase what a creative soul has sowed for his passion.

Here are the best articles I got from and about Micheal Turner. Read on…

Marvel Mourns Michael Turner

Michael Turner, beloved comic book artist, passed away in Santa Monica, Calif. on June 27 at the age of 37 after years of battling chondrosarcoma, a form of cancer that affects bones and cartilage.

"A nicer guy never lived," said friend and frequent collaborator Jeph Loeb. "A better friend you could never want. And he loved my Sam."

"In this all access world, very little remains that one could consider truly rare," said Marvel Editor in Chief Joe Quesada. "Mike Turner was one of those things. One of those rare individuals who come around once, maybe twice in a lifetime, a cut above the rest of us, special in every way, undeniably touched by god or whatever higher power you believe in.

"I had the good fortune of knowing and working with Mike and because of this, I consider myself incredibly privileged as it allowed me the opportunity to have been touched by his talent and grace. And for that, I will always be thankful.

"Mike, it was a rare pleasure, Godspeed!"

After getting his start on Witchblade for Top Cow, Turner not only launched his own publishing company, Aspen, but brought his dynamic art style to both Marvel and DC. His work has graced dozens of Marvel comics, most notably on covers to CIVIL WAR.

Everyone at Marvel Entertainment extends heartfelt condolences and deepest sympathy to the friends and family of Michael Turner.

Michael Turner (April 21, 1971June 27, 2008) was an American comic book artist born in Crossville, Tennessee and primarily known for his work on Witchblade, Black Panther, and Fathom. He was also the president of his own entertainment company Aspen MLT. Michael Turner died at Santa Monica Hospital, California, after a long battle with cancer, at the age of 37.


Michael Turner was discovered by Marc Silvestri at a convention, and hired by Silvestri's Top Cow Productions as an artist. He initially did background illustrations for Top Cow titles before co-creating Witchblade. In the summer of 1998 he debuted the creator-owned Fathom, having also worked on his new series Soulfire.

As well as an artist, Turner was an award-winning water skier, held an instructor level red sash in martial arts, and was an avid video game player.

In March 2000, Turner was diagnosed with cancer, specifically chondrosarcoma in the right pelvis. He was treated at UCLA Medical Center with surgery in which he lost his entire hip, 40% of his pelvis, and three pounds of bone. The surgery was followed by nine months of radiation therapy.

Turner departed Top Cow in late 2002 to found his own comic book publishing company, Aspen MLT Inc. (where MLT stands for Michael Layne Turner), located in Santa Monica, with a studio in Marina del Rey, California. The release of comics from Aspen was delayed by a year-long lawsuit with Top Cow Productions over the rights to Fathom, and over the rights to the unreleased titles Soulfire (initially called Dragonfly) and Ekos, both of which Turner had begun development on before leaving Top Cow and before his diagnosis of cancer. Aspen and Top Cow settled the lawsuit out of court in 2003.

In 2004 Turner contributed covers to various DC Comics titles, including The Flash and Identity Crisis. He also provided cover art and co-wrote the "Godfall" story arc that ran in the three main Superman titles in early 2004. He also illustrated the six-issue "Supergirl from Krypton" story arc in Superman/Batman. His creator-owned title Soulfire also began publication in 2004, and Fathom resumed publication in that year as well, though this time with Aspen MLT rather than Top Cow.

On August 6, 2005, Marvel Comics announced the signing of Michael Turner to a work-for-hire deal for a 6-issue project and covers. This would turn out to be at least the variant covers for the miniseries Civil War and the new Wolverine ongoing series Wolverine: Origins.

In addition Turner had been announced as the artist on Ultimate Wolverine.

On Friday June 27th at 10:42 Pacific Daylight Time at the Santa Monica Hospital in California, Turner passed away at the age of 37 after his long fight with cancer.[1]

Check out one of his creations and its wesbite

Soulfire website:

[edit] Comics

[edit] Covers

[edit] DC Comics

Variant incentive cover for Justice League of America #12, by Turner.

Variant incentive cover for Justice League of America #12, by Turner.

  • Teen Titans #1 variant cover (DC Comics, July/2003). Two covers were published for this issue in a 50/50 split. The Turner cover was also later used for the first trade paperback of the series, and was the more sought after cover of the issue upon release. This is reflected at, where the Turner cover is worth $5 more than the Mike McKone cover. [1]
  • Action Comics #812-813, Adventures of Superman #625-626 & Superman #202-203 (DC Comics, January-February/2004). 6-part story arc "Godfall" running for two months in the three main series of Superman, with covers and script (co-written with Joe Kelly) of Turner. The art (pencils, inks and colors) of the six issues were handled by other artists of Aspen MLT.
  • Superman #205 (DC Comics, 2004). Variant cover for the second issue of the For Tomorrow story arc in this series. Jim Lee, the story's artist, also drew one variant cover for an issue of the Turner story arc in Superman/Batman (in addition to his duties as regular artist for the Supergirl story).
  • Identity Crisis #1-7 (DC Comics, 2004). Turner drew all covers for this series.
  • The Flash #207-211 (DC Comics, 2004). Turner drew five covers for this series written by Geoff Johns, who also works in a creator-owned project with him, the series Ekos.
  • Wildstorm Winter Special (DC/Wildstorm, November/2004). Cover with the characters Zealot, Apollo, Midnighter, Jack Hawksmoor and Deathblow.
  • Supergirl (DC Comics, 2005). Turner drew variant covers for the first issue of this new series, featuring the Kara Zor-El Supergirl's return to continuity in his Superman/Batman story arc.
  • Justice League of America #0-12 (DC Comics, 2006-2007). Turner drew various covers, shifting between regular and variants, for the first thirteen issues of the series.
  • Superman/Batman #8-13,26 (DC Comics, 2004/2006). Turner drew a first and second print for #8 as well as a variant for #8. He drew one of two covers for #10, the other being drawn by Jim Lee. He drew two covers for #13. He drew both covers for #26, the issue dedicated to the passing of Jeph Loeb's son Sam.

[edit] Marvel Comics

Cover of Wolverine: Origins #1, by Turner.

Cover of Wolverine: Origins #1, by Turner.

  • Wolverine: Origins #1 variant cover (Marvel Comics, 2006). The "regular" cover of this issue was done by Joe Quesada.
  • Civil War #1-7 (Marvel Comics, 2006-2007). Each issue of the miniseries has three covers, one "regular cover" by series penciller Steve McNiven, one "variant cover" by Turner, and one "sketch variant cover" by Turner.
  • Civil War #1 "Aspen Comics exclusive variant cover" (Marvel Comics 2006). Turner also did another cover featuring Iron Man, Captain America, and Wolverine printed as an Aspen Exclusive Variant, much like Civil War: X-Men #1.
  • Black Panther #18, & Ms. Marvel #1 (Marvel, 2006). Turner drew variant covers for these two comic-books, that had both regular covers drawn by Frank Cho.
  • Ultimate X-Men #75 (Marvel Comics, 2006) To introduce Ultimate Cable in 2006, Marvel commissioned Turner to to the cover for the first book of the story line.
  • Incredible Hulk #100 (Marvel Comics, 2006) Turner drew a "green hulk" variant as well as a "gray hulk" variant for this issue.
  • Onslaught Reborn #1 (Marvel Comics, 2006) Turner drew a "B" cover with Rob Liefeld drawing the "A" cover for this issue.
  • Black Panther #23 (Marvel Comics, 2006) Currently Turner is working on covers for the Black Panther tie in to the Civil War, starting with #23
  • Fallen Son: The Death of Captain America #1-5 (Marvel Comics, 2007) Turner drew the variant covers for this entire series in a 50/50 split with the various artists of the individual issues.
  • Ultimate Wolverine Turner was set to pencil the covers and interior art for this series, written by Jeph Loeb
  • Sub-Mariner #1 and #5 Turner draws the regular cover for these issues.
  • World War Hulk Turner drew an Aspen Comics exclusive variant cover for the first issue available at
  • Hulk #1 (Marvel Comics, 2008) Turner drew a "RED" variant cover for the first issue that was only available to advance ticket holders of Wizard Magazine's 2008 Wizard World Comic Convention in Los Angeles, CA.

Writer’s note: Before I end this post, I have three words to describe Micheal’s artworks--- dynamic, awesome and detailed! I wish I could be like him, a visionary artist by heart.

unlimited text?

Textus interuptus 1

My Lolo's crappy radio blur for a second while listening to an afternoon radio drama (was it "Condorilla"?, haha). I think there will be some text messages coming up in my cellphone knowing that mobile messaging interupts signal. Yeah right, there were lots of text from Kuris peeps. I jumped fast to the sofa and pushed the "OK" button of my phone to reveal messages... then everything went partly motionless... much like the Matrix slowmo-scenes (hehe)...I will reveal and would never hold back what the Kuris guys have texted me... this is textus interuptus edition post of this blog. you get raw thoughts straight from the Kurisans!

Textus interuptus phase one:

KENSHIN RACIL: Nong musta... ti mkakd2 kmo s pista nmon? miz u guyz (21/06/2008 7: 42pm)

MY THOUGHTS: How we wish we could be there for your fiesta Raz. But we will try. The group is getting busier but we didn't forget you, promise.

KADULOM MARX: Musta na Nel, amo ni gli globe ko nga number. (23/06/2008 5:45pm)

MY THOUGHTS: Now why does Marky suddenly switched to Globe? my wild guess: he has a new cellphone...was it N95? (and he's keeping his smart sim with the old phone) Oh well, this is what you'll gonna do when the special project paid well, hehe.

SLY LYNDON: Nel ti musta na budget prop mo sa wafletime Ok n? (24/06/2008 12:14pm)

MY THOUGHTS: It’s done but I need to edit it guys so that we can assure that we can start right away. A little patience is all we need, I swear.

SAMURAGI TATANG: OK lng nel a. Una lng kabudlay s project wla pa mn ko sweldo ky 2 weks p lng ko ya. makad2 k dri kron? (25/06/2008 10:37am)

MY THOUGHTS: That's great Tang. I wish you well and you won't fish for food in the coming months, hehe. We hope when the real group project comes in, we won't dissapoint each other.

BRAVO BRYAN: diri kmi day Marx nel gstay a. sige p kmi obra projek my kulang p kmi nhulat gni. (25/06/2008 1:25pm)

MY THOUGHTS: I wish you the best guys. you were great and don't forget I need your help for the coming projects. you're one of the important peeps for the task.

MORBID DYVRUM: Nel, musta? Busy gid. My projct mn ko b sbng. My ngpaubra dan sakn plan sng balay so my nlagas mn ko nga deadline sa client ko. (26/06/2008 2:55pm)

MY THOUGHTS: Oh yeah, Mr. Morbid is an architecture grad so it's quite clear he gets these kind of projects once in a while. I hope he would show up when the group project gets in.

ZYRA JANELYN: Ron...gudpm, my clas n kmi ya. Ngkitanay kmi gli dy Marx a. mayo gani my income n sla dy Tatang. (26/06/2008 3:02pm)

MY THOUGHTS: Yeah, they're getting better friend. We could only hope for the best for each of us. I need to buy load coz I can't you text guys, hehe!

Textus interuptus...end (for now)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

the reality of life

Janiuay, located in the central part of Iloilo, is among the hardest hit with casualties expected to be highest. Mayor Ben Margarico in an interview told Bombo Radyo that at least 19 are confirmed dead and hundreds feared missing. Included in the missing is a family of five whose entire house was carried upstream and personally seen by the mayor to have hit the foundation of the Suage bridge. He recalled seeing numerous others waving for help with frantic looks of desperation. (reported by Florence Hibionada, Ilonggo journalist)

Hard rain

Like life’s circumstances, we we’re struck hard by rain. Even the city of Iloilo, home of the infamous Kuris animators, life is a hard rain lately. But we are not losing hope. We were born to fight and face the torments of life even if takes everything from us. We are gifted like mutants in the pages of the X-men comics who never give up to prove ourselves to those who loath and hate us in this blog. They dream on for our downfall but we knew we have left something to the Ilonggos to fonder. Amen.

We realize that this little cyberspace blog isn’t all about the declaration of our feat, quest or journey. It is also a cyber realm of compassion, public service and little media zone. We wanted to inform current issues, happenings, events and news about the world around us.

News 1: Hard rain in the city
Recently, Iloilo City was strucked hard by rain and storm. From the evening of June 14 until today, June 16, 2008, a cruel typhoon tormented Iloilo City with destructive winds and heavy rain leaving only destruction and loss of lives as well as properties. In Mandurriao and Jaro district alone, they were millions of properties loss and some vulnerable lives were taken away by a gigantic flood. It swept away houses especially those in the riverbanks and subdivisions in Jaro (Alta Tierra, etc.). I was riding home in a jeepney when when I saw children crying in fear, houses were washed away, families eating their breakfast early in the morning along the streets and cattle animals walking freely. The old Mandurriao Iloilo Airport was washed away especially its steel wall and nearby squatter community experienced a worse disaster ever. In Jaro, Janiuay, Cabatuan, Pavia and many other municipalities in Iloilo, there were awful stories of survival from families drowned in flood as told by a police in our neighborhood. Until now, these stoies haunt the city and the province with electricity blackout and loss of water supply. Few days from now, everything will be back to normal and students can go to school as classes resume. But that would wait until the rebuilding is done and every one gets over with the trauma.

News 2: Hard task to follow for Kuris
Amid the typhoon disaster, the Kuris animators are still in contact with each other. The new commercial animated module project that we will start soon and promotes a very popular food product will start few week from now. I entrusted Lyndon to lead this project since I saw the eagerness and determination to fulfill this Task in him. Marx, Bryan, Tatang and Jay will assist him as they continue their special project. I need to prepare the budget proposal needed to be submitted first before anything else. I talked to the promoters of the commercial project and they are very excited to see the animation that will included in the whole module once it is done. But it would take a lot of effort and brainstorming before we can realize the fruit of our sacrifice. Still, the rest of our other big projects are on hold including the NCCA-Lapis proposal, a charity event and DreamTeam shows that we will take part. By August, we might handle the animation visuals in a special event in Amigo Terrace Hotel. We will reveal everything in time… Oh, we might post also the movie review we did for Urduja and Incredible Hulk. Robinsons is really a cool cinema to watch these days , hehe!

helping hand

SM Foundation team headed by Ma’am Connie Angeles during the weeklong free medicine charity event in response to typhoon Frank’s recent devastation in Iloilo.

A Kuris animator with SM Foundation’s lovable project manager Cristie Angeles
A Kuris animator with SM Foundation Head and Kapwa Ko Mahal Ko popular anchor Connie Angeles
Kuris animators gladly joined the group headed by SM Foundation in giving joy to the kids last Christmas in the city’s biggest mall.
Kuris and SM team for a Christmas charity last year. (from left to right) SM PR officer Troy Camarista, Kuris’ Ronelo Ladiao, Marx Silva, SM Foundation project manager Cristie Angeles, SM Marketing staff, GMA Ratsada’s Mark Nuneza and Kuris’ Amado Caporal.
SM's charity and passion

There are many reasons why charity and passion complement each other. For us, it is a symbol of our purspose and dream to reach out with our gifts. Sharing what we have and what we know is the best way of making ourselves into total artists. Artists are supposed to be beings of emotions and warmth. We hope we would always be...
SM Foundation and SM City Iloilo were some of Kuris valuable partners and sponsors when we were starting to create our dream a year ago. Last October 19, 2007, we held our graduation at SM City Iloilo lower ground floor. It was memorable since it was the very-first graduation ever held in the biggest mall in the city. It was just a dream from the start and people wouldn't even believe that we we're gonna truly have our grad at SM. But it happened and a lot of Ilonggos finally took a glance of how talented local animators are.
The BEQUEST: Origin of Dinagyang, the group's popular animated short film project as the first of its kind in Western Visayas was publicly promoted at SM City Iloilo in a weeklong exhibit. Again, people were visited the booth with much curiosity and interest to the talents of Ilonggo animators. There were art and poster exhibits, film showing and hands-on drawing exhibition from the artists. On the 25th of January, the animated short film was shown at SM Cinema 7 fully-packed with more than 500 spectators, all were curios Ilonggos wanting to see the BEQUEST for the first time. SM City Iloilo has been generous enough to provide a venue and sponsorship assistance to our group in achieving our dreams in a short period of time. We owe so much gratitude to the management of SM City for trusting us and showcasing our talents...for free.
SM Foundation, SM Supermall's charitable arms in helping the less fortunate people in the country considered Kuris Animators as its important friend in bringing the message of hope and compassion. Last December, we were invited to take part in a Christmas charity program for kids in the mall. For us, it is a rare previledge to take part in the foundation's activities that harnessed not only our talents but our social commitment and conciousness. The short S and M animated project we did for SM is a sign of our gratitude to the mall for its generosity.We did it for weeks and it was done for free. I even heard that another mall was previously planning to copy such effort but they failed since the animators whom they invited charge TF until the plan was scrapped. Oh well, sometimes there are things that doesn't come for free.
In response to the recent devastation of typhoon Frank to various parts of Panay, SM Foundation immediately came to Iloilo to distribute free medicines and relief goods. Headed by SM Foundation's leader, Connie Angeles and Project Manager, Cristie Angeles, they showed the meaning of hope and compassion to the Ilonggos. They will stay until Sunday this week to fulfill their task. Ma'am Connie who is also a prominent anchor of the longest-running public service TV program, Kapwa ko Mahal Ko brought her production team to cover the charity event. I was there ealier today to witness the how it feels good to help other people who were in need. They welcomed Kuris animator's effort to help and share life with hope.
In fact, we were inspired to pursue our plan to held our own charity project by the end of the year. Our media friends, generous sponsors and partner organizations are willing to help us not only to show our talent but to touch lives. This will be a great inspiration to launch our Kuris Charity Art Drive later this year as we celebrate the succeess of our friendship and dreams. Better watch out for it!

Pinoy animation is here!

Urduja, the recently successful animated film with an all-Filipino production team opened in theaters last June 18.
Tony Tuviera, head of APT Production and Urduja’s mega-producer with some the animated films cuddly characters.
Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez is the voice behind Urduja
"Isinasambit na ng hangin ang iyong pangalan, Urduja..."
last words of Lakampati to Urduja

Urduja's charm: the Kuris flick review

Urduja became an instant timeless artistic creation in the Philippine filmaking history. It's true, the all-Filipino animated film proved to be an innovative feat for both local animators, the creative writers and visionary producers. APT Production's CEO, Mr. Tony Tuviera, the pioneering producer of Eat Bulaga and other television shows as well a notable films succeeded in creating a breakthrough project that embraces both Philippine historical heritage and literary treasures fused with animation pop culture. The product seems to be comparable with Walt Disney's "Mulan-meets-Pocahontas". It raises the dignity of women's role and empowerment in the machismo-sided Philippine society. Urduja relflects the worth of women as equal with men when it comes to wit and leadership. APT risked a lot but I truly believe it was worth it.

Though the screenwriters and the creative production staff have altered parts of Urduja's story, they were great in combining their own twist and modern ideas to make the film more catchy, appealing and charming to the younger audience. Animation was suppose to be for kids, but this time around kids won't be the only genre of moviegoers to get entertained, even the older people will find its love story lovable. The dialogues are crisp, clear and fresh. The creativity of giving life to Urduja's story is relevent to the negative "regionalism attitude" and "kanya-kanya" system of the Filipinos. It is a clear message of unity and hope amid torments of fate. We can get positive values even if it's just a kids stuff animated film.

The animators can't be taken lightly in this project. They have breathe life to the characters of Urduja's saga through their artistic touch and stunning visual artistry. Every movements and scenes in Urduja reminds us how tough it is to give life through our drawings and turn it into animation, I bet they observed American standard of 2D animation (not less than 24 drawings per second, whew!). The costumes are delicately created and drawn with pure passion as well as the stunning backgrounds. Some of them are done in 3D animation like the "sea battle scene" of Lim Hang with the villain Wang. The waterfalls is also mesmerizing to watch. But I realize that Urduja's animation team is composed of various groups of animators since they carry unique names of their studios or group. How we wish we could be part of such huge project someday, hehe! I think their costumes and even the settings are well-researched. One of the highlights of the film is the opening dance and fight sequences of Urduja where she danced "singkil" fused with "Tinikling". The scene was awesone.

Big stars are never far behind the charm of the animated film. In fact, this is Regine Velasquez's first project that gave life to an animated character which shows her powerful songbird voice. She sang the same magical voice and fervor the way we see her in concerts or heard from her popular CDs. Also notable were the impressive performance of Cesar Montano, Eddie Garcia, Micheal V, Allan K, Jay Manalo, Ruby Rodriguez and a lot more powerhouse star cast. Allan K and Micheal V's characters Kukut and Tarsir reminds me of Lion King's "Hakuna Matata".

For the record, Urduja is the second all-Filpino animated film shown in the big screen since Ibong Adarna. It combined both traditional and digital way of making animation. It boosts with impressive storyline, cultural relevance, music and star cast. A truly Filipino pride in animation and we hope it would be given fitting recognition internationally. Believe me, your heart will be tickled with this film.

Animation is getting stronger and bigger in the Philippines these days. We hope we can be part of that breakthrough and innovation in the coming years.

Urduja Cast

* Regine Velasquez - Princess Urduja
* Cesar Montano - Limhang
* Eddie Garcia - Lakanpati
* Jay Manalo - Simakwel
* Johnny Delgado - Wang
* Ruby Rodriguez - Mayumi
* Epy Quizon - Daisuke
* Michael V. - Kukut
* Allan K. - Tarsir

Urduja reviews

“Though the film was patterned after Disney’s Pocahantas and Mulan, it depicts the Filipinos talent on creating animation and putting it to work. This isn’t bad at all as it will be a start of a more creative filming’s in the movie industry and more educational local animation from the Philippines.”


“... trailer of a new Filipino Animation, which I’d rather call “Filipino Anime” - Urduja, it is so good we were shocked its completely Filipino made, we thought it was a dubbed version of another country’s legend but it is about the Philippines!”

- Shixi XIE

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

postively somewhere

Better in Time

God, this it. The answer that we have been waiting for finally arrive today. The sleepless nights finally paid us some emotional reward, the reward of feeling appreciated and understood by what we do best.

9:30am: THE LETTER

I woke up late. My head's on the internet thinking about friendster, yahoo news and this lovely little blog. Urduja is gonna be shown by wednesday and the Kurisans are anticipating the animated film. We are so curious what would it be like to watch an all-Filipino production animated film for more than one and half decade since Ibong Adarna. After having a glimpse of the internet stuff, I was surprised to find a letter addressed for Kuris in our kitchen. It's from NCCA (National Commission for Culture and Arts). They responded in our project proposal a month ago. As I read it silently, my heart skip a beat when they mentioned great interest in our concept and aspiration to make LAPIS into a full-length film. But what left a piece of sadness inside me was when they said that our proposal would be hold back until the end of the year as soon as we complete our requirements including SEC registration, complete full script, comprehensive storyboard and many other legal papers needed to process the project. So they send back the proposal along with a promise that once we are ready with everything, we may soon have our dream project. I know that my proposal was written with sincerity, dynamic thoughts and creative visions from a group of amatuer animators hoping to get close to their dream one step at a time.So I have faith that we have convinced them that our proposal has outmost relevance with their objectives to highlight the real talent of Filipino artists, for Ilonggo animators in particular.The future is coming and we know that we have the chance to fulfill another chapter of our quest, our destiny.Thank God for the good sign, this is all we need for now.


There's no room for blame and regrets.We knew what we've been through since we finished The BEQUEST a few months ago. If we let failures pull us down, our last grasp for hope is gone. I brought the letter with me and hoping I could meet the group to show them personally about the letter. Though I texted them earlier about the news, I think it's better that I'll meet the group. We accidentally met outside Robinson Mall. Marx, Lyndon and Elson just finished their mall-strolling while I was going inside to buy some blank CDs. Instantly, I showed them the letter and Marx grabbed it with excitement. He said he's keeping it for a while. At that very moment, they finally believe that what we are doing with our passion has outmost importance and purpose. We never wasted our talents and sacrifice for nothing. But we need more time and effort to prepare for everything if we really need to get closer to our dream. We have each other and our talents that could save us from the possible despair and failures. We were never a failure after all, we have showed them what we can do best as Ilonggo animators. With such great hope that inginited inside us through this letter, Marx, Bryan and Jay left me promise that they are ready to manage their time between the special project and the possible work for LAPIS once our proposal is officially approved. Likewise, Lyndon is leading another important project for a commercial module wherein we will insert animated scenes. I entrusted him with this project since everybody is doing their own thing. I will reveal more of this commercial project in the coming posts. Well, our day ended with hope for each of us... the best is yet to come and we need to work hard for a dream as we get better in time.

We're tired from a long day. The rest of the gang are taking a nap at Marx's room. I have to get home now.

it's a bird, it's a plane, no...

Superman, Jim Lee artwork
The Death of Superman in the hands of Doomsday, one of the saddest comicbook event in the 90s.
Superman with the Justice League by Jim Lee
Blue eyes, undeniable charisma and good boy looks...Christopher Reeves is a timeless Superman
Christopher Reeves shines in four Superman films since 1979.
Christopher Reeves, the most iconic Superman actor charmed the world
Hollywood actors who portrayed the "Man of Steel" throughout the years.

Man of Steel

(The Superman Chronicles part 2 of 2, previously published in Panay News)

By Ronelo Ladiao

All sparks flying these past weeks all over the world for the screen debut of Superman Returns after nearly 20-year absence in the movie screens. Brandon Routh, the neophyte Hollywood actor discovered by prolific movie director Bryan Singer (X-men and X2: X-men United) through extensive auditions in 2002 finally wears the mantle of the “Man of Steel” that Christopher Reeves left for the world to remember.

Will Brandon Routh end up as the sexiest man alive in Hollywood later this year? I bet Hugh Jackman is another tough hunk rival to beat.

But before the Hollywood phenomenon, Kal-El (Superman’s real name given by his Kryptonian parents) soar the comic book realm and established his supremacy, a fame he share with Batman, X-men, Spiderman and other wondrous fictional superheroes.

Originally, Superman is the last survivor of the Kryptonian race in a far distant galaxy. As a part of the royal blood Kryptonian family, he possesses high level of superhuman capabilities such as flight that defies universal gravity, speed faster than light, vast superior strength, invulnerability from physical damage, x-ray vision and emits powerful thin red lazer blast from his eyes.

His god-like powers shown in the comic books contributed to the decline of Superman’s popularity in the middle of 1960s and early 1970s since Marvel Comics (DC Comics’ rival) brought new level of character development to mainstream comic book superheroes.

By early 1980s, comic book writer-artist John Byrne was asked to revamp and inject new concepts in Superman’s comic book continuity with his storyline “The Man of Steel” that retold Kal-El’s origin. The reformat comic book continuity of Superman become an instant success and dominated the best-selling list of comic books in America. Eventually, the comic book success of the greatest superhero spawned four movies in 1980s where Christopher Reeves become an instant superstar with his charismatic portrayal of Superman. But the actor’s accident that led to comatose and death left a void of emptiness of who fits to portray Superman again.

Though there were numerous attempts to resurrect Superman in the television (Lois and Clark, Superboy and a bunch of animated series), it proved to be futile or somehow mild-success for the record. But nothing can be successful as Smallville, a youth-oriented and early retelling of Superman’s teenage life in his hometown. Tom Welling, the young version of Clark Kent/Superman become an instant matinee idol among young Americans and Superman fans. In the TV series, he uses his untapped superpowers, secretly defended his hometown from the chaos caused by Kyrpton-mutated villains, develop a friendship with Lex Luthor (his future arch-enemy) and a touching love story with Lana Lang (his love interest before Lois Lane). Right now, the TV series is getting stronger in terms of story continuity and TV ratings worldwide.

In 1993, prior to the sensational debut of Smallville in television, Superman made a huge impact in the comic book continuity with his tragic death after he fought an invincible foe called Doomsday. Even the combined powers of Superman’s allies in Justice League were no match from this gruesome alien monster.

After Superman suffered fatal damage and died along with Doomsday, “Funeral for a Friend” storyline followed were Kal-El’s death was mourned by the world. Every DC Superhero attended his funeral that boosts the comic books sales into success.

“Reign of Superman” was another instant success as DC Comics introduced four superman versions in the storyline (it was a period after Superman was buried). The Cyborg Superman, teenage Superboy, ironman-like Man of Steel, Eradiator and a long-haired punisher-like Superman (no powers and uses guns as weapons). But later in the storyline’s climax, Cyborg was revealed as the major villain who plotted to deceive the world, Superboy was a genetic clone of Kal-El (he lived with Clark Kent’s parents after the major ‘supermen war’), Man of Steel was a Black American scientist who idolized Superman (he created a powerful armor with extreme weaponries), Eradicator was a lost Kryptonian who pose as another Superman and finally, the long-haired powerless Superman was actually the real Superman resurrected from death.

Superman's abilities have occasionally been removed or altered for dramatic reasons. In the late 1990s Superman comics, Superman loses his traditional powers and transforms into a being of electromagnetic energy. In this form, Superman can phase through solid objects, see frequencies of energy, and draw power from electrical sources. In order to maintain physical cohesion in this form, he needs to wear a containment suit. During this time, he is able to transform into the corporeal form of Clark Kent, but in his human guise he has no special powers.

Recently, some authors have implied that Superman's powers can reach unlimited levels, based on solar energy absorption and withdrawal of mental blocks. In "Our Worlds at War, Superman dives into the sun to gain sufficient energy to overpower Brainiac 13 (an major villain). In Superman/Batman, when Kara Zor-El (Supergirl) claims to be more powerful than Superman, he tells her that he put personal mean blocks on his powers as he grew up to keep from destroying the Earth, blocks that Supergirl does not have. Thus, while Supergirl can appear to be stronger, Superman just has greater self-control.

In an interview with Joe Casey (writer for Superman/Batman comic book series) he writes that Superman under his penmanship can re-arrange the Solar System and tear a star apart. "I've always seen Superman as this completely over-the-top, fantastic character who has ‘no’ limits whatsoever," writes Casey. Unencumbered by mental blocks, "Superman is unbeatable." (does that mean Superman is omnipotent and rivals the power of the Phoenix?). Recent rumors in the comic book industry imply that there might be an X-men/Superman crossover storyline that would embark the Phoenix to battle Superman for cosmic balance (it’s just rumors for now… but we will see how he fought a cosmic-hungry Jean Grey).

Throughout the years of movies and comic book success, Superman is not just another superhero icon to beat, he’s the comic book symbol of American dream, justice and freedom since his costume has resemblance with the American flag. His influence spans from music, television, modern pop culture, fashion and almost anything you can think of. Every time we realize danger and terrorism threatens our existence in the real world, we have this wishful thinking that a ‘superman’ will come and save us.

Bryan Singer is the man behind the resurrection of the ‘Man of Steel’ on June 28, 2006. Superman Returns will be the first-ever film to be shown in IMAX 3D screen in America and other parts of the world, a prominent achievement for the same man who brought the X-men in the movies.

In the new Superman movie, Singer holds true to the tradition of the past four Superman films since the storyline was rumored as the continuation where Christopher Reeves left off (let’s see). We all know that Singer is a trilogy-oriented type of filmmaker like what he did wit the X-men and this film is just the beginning of another infinite fateful ride for the last son of krypton and the man of steel who can rise from the ashes like a phoenix (if there might be a ‘Doomsday Saga’ and a funeral that would make the world weep for a hero).

For now, Brandon Routh is another Hollywood hunk to watch out for and his movie will fulfill another lifelong fantasy of many comic book fanatics.

Writer’s note: Superman Returns that introduced Brandon Routh as a caliber actor will fly in the big screen again with the making of the sequel, Superman: Man of Steel directed by Bryan Singer sometime in 2010. In Smallville TV series based on Clark Kent’s early life, the series is on its 8th season this year with the exception of Lex Luthor (the actor decided to quit his role) but the deadly villain Doomsday is rumored to be introduced soon.

Monday, June 16, 2008

music-minded mutants

Tatang and Bryan checking up the in-between frames to be posted for the exhibit

Cut, cut, cut… stick it up!
Kuris guys waiting for me at La Paz Plaza
Sleeping pills isn’t gonna work for Kurisans when it comes to insomiatic nights
Amado’s finest Kuris Styrofoam logo for the team

Potential Breakout Song

Marx's room was so empty except for a few sleepless people hollering around. Guys, music please and get on with the beat.

Bryan should have played the guitar. He's good in doing that aside from his artistic stroke. Brynh isn't here to grab the imaginary mic and do the vocals. No way, Marx and Jay could do the vocals professionally. They should stick in keeping up the beat of the drums and doing the artistic graphics. Lyndon knows best what would be the good sound to rock the room tonight. I'll be contented in listening and laughing out to your craziness with music (or supposed-to-be-music). Cut the crap... this is what you get when you're in a team of artistically-active artists and part-time gifted music-makers. When your friends have the guts, you could possibly compose and create a "potential breakout song" that shows artists can make music and drop-dead graphics all at the same time.

This is a part of the nonsense potential breakout song…

pick up your pencil and unleash your reveries

in a piece of paper cloaked in empty spaces

fill it up with your guts, premonitions and attitude

reveal the fullness of your artistic magnitude

rock your senses every time you present your life's canvas

cover it up with hardbound shading and imaginary clash

trace the rugged lines and clean it up in a lightbox

your artistic stroke is as powerful as pandora's box

animate your inhibitions

believe in your intuitions


Life-today summary: I caught up with Jay, Bryan, Tatang, Marx and Lyndon at La Paz Plaza while planning to go Gaisano. But instead, I treat them with a lunch in a nearby carinderia. They consumed 10 plates of rice and three plates of main courses (sud-an). I got home to get our materials for the exhibit. When I get back at Marx's house by 3pm, I started cutting our posters and artworks to make an art collage in a 20X30 illustration board. Amado's newly-made Kuris styro logo was drop-dead gorgeous for us. Tatang assembled the selected in-between drawings from BEQUEST for the other 20X30 board. Two hours later, we submit it to our animation instructor for an upcoming exhibit on June 23-27 (I think). He was trilled we made it on time for his deadline. From the way he disclosed the conversation, we may be the last one team standing for the cause of our craft and passion these days. The rest, they just disappear like X-men's Nighcrawler teleporting exit. Finally, we sing and made a great little song last night with this crappy guitar. It was a potential breakout song for us...

Storytelling- end.

Guess what-- there' no P.S. in this post today. But I might spill the guts of Shrek animator next time!