New Asian Currents [PHILIPPINES]

Sowing Seeds

- PHILIPPINES / 2000 / English, Tagalog / Color / Video / 15 min

Director, Script, Narrator, Producer: Avic Ilagan
Photography, Stills: Neil Daza
Editing: Ricky Orellana
Sound, Animation: Ellen Ramos
Production Company, Source: Black Soup
59-A San Rafael St., Bo. Kapitolyo, Pasig PHILIPPINES
Phone & Fax: 63-2-633-7157
E-mail: mutya@philonline.com

A deceiving first look leads one to believe that Sowing Seeds is just another one of those sociological studies on “Asian brides.” But the film is less about Yamagata wives than about the filmmaker’s own professional identity crisis. In her eyes, the modest but resilient Filipinas in the film transform from being the subject of a study, to active agents who unintentionally revert the gaze.

[Director’s Statement] I have been making documentaries on migrants since 1997. Three of these are about migrant workers in Japan. My motivation in making these documentaries started with my involvement in creating pieces of laboratory work in theater. In my encounters with migrants I was touched and amazed at their stories, their strength of will and their resiliency when faced with adversities. Migration, whether spatial or temporal, will always be in my films. It is an issue of loss, a theme that is very personal as I am living a life of a migrant for a long time.

Sowing Seeds became more of a filmmaker’s reflections on making the film and the Asian Brides themselves rather than the brides speaking on their life in Yamagata.


- Avic Ilagan

Prior to pursuing a career as an independent filmmaker, spent eighteen years as a theatre artist of PETA. Decided to shift to filmmaking thereafter. Has won several awards for her documentaries and short feature films throughout 1995–97. Created educational television programming designed to appeal to mass audiences as Director of Children’s Television Programming at PETA-BFI. Has directed a number of drama teleplays aired nationally on Philippine television.

• New Asian Currents | Soshin: In Your Dreams | A True Story about Love | My Migrant Soul | Our Boys | Along the Railway | More than One Is Unhappy | This Winter | Jari Mari: Of Cloth and Other Stories | King of Dreams | My Friend Su | The Performance | My Mother’s Home, Lagoon | Water and Atefeh | Blessed | MAYA | Danchizake (Homemade Sake) | Variant Phases | Doomealee, the Very First Step | Farewell | Pansy and Ivy | Sky-blue Hometown | Koryu: Southern Women, South Korea | News Time | Margin | Sowing Seeds | Chlorine Addiction | Chichi, the Monster | Mixed Fruit Banana Split | Sales | The Falling Kite | March of Time | Once Upon a Time | Hummadruz | Vanished with Water • New Asian Currents Invitation Films | The Musicians | The Eclipse | Life beyond the Noise | “Floating Islands” Series | 03:04 | The Paradise Island Tong-Sha, an Isle like a Crab | West Island | Who Is Fishing® | Silent Delta • Jurors | Sato Makoto | Chalida Uabumrungjit • New Asian Currents Special | Filmmakers Information Center / Searching for New Contexts