The famous line, “on our path we are never denied but only redirected” looks like it is not just an old chestnut. In fact, 22-year old Jann Jeorge Michael Añonuevo is a testament that we can all dream big and make it happen.
Growing up, Jeorge really wanted to be an engineer. But because of the twists and turns of events in his life, he decided to study Information Technology at RedLink Institute of Science and Technology.
While studying, his dream of becoming a filmmaker also started to flourish and because of the religious organization where he belongs, he was able to start weaving his own stories.
“Nagsimula akong gumawa ng mga films nang sumali ako sa isang religious organization sa aming simbahan (SocCom). Lahat ng mga skills na dala ko ngayon ay aking natutunan noong mga panahong naglilingkod pa ako sa simbahan. Learning while serving God is a big part of me being a filmmaker.”
His passion towards storytelling and bringing life stories through his films is truly evident. Not to mention, his film entry “Mandalas Mata” to the Anak ng Pinoy Youth Organization Film Festival.
“Ang Mandalas Mata ay isang maikling pelikulang hango sa totoong buhay. Ang maikling pelikulang ito ay patungkol sa binatang binago ng kanyang nakaraan. Sa kaniyang pagbabalik-tanaw, naalala niya ang kaniyang sarili at ang mga nagawa niya sa kaniyang pamilya. Si Phillip ay isang mapagmahal na anak. Isinilang siya sa panahon kung kailan talamak ang social media at mga teknolohiya na kung saan madalas niyang pinaglalaanan ng oras at naging dahilan ito upang mawalan siya ng respeto sa kanyang mga magulang,” Jeorge narrated with the Film Dream.
According to the talented Jorge Añonuevo, together with his team, they had to conduct rigorous research that is befitting to the theme of the festival they’re participating in and he also had to consider their life-experiences.
“Ang aming team/grupo ay nagsagawa ng research kung anong kwento ang aakma sa tema ng patimpalak. It was also the time na nagre-reflect ako sa mga karanasan ko sa buhay. I’ve decided to share it with my team. They were all amazed by the story and all of us agreed that it would be used for the competition.”
The combined effort and hardwork poured by Jeorge and his production team paid-off because they were chosen as one of the finalists out of all the entries in the film fest. But he recalls that they also had fair-share of struggles during the film production.
“Time was really a huge challenge for all of us. Most of us are students, specifically college students who are still coping up with the new setup (online learning). Hindi namin ma-commit ang mga sarili namin lalo na kapag may shooting. Because we all have our own priorities, madalas, nacacancel or nareresched ang shoot.”
BTS photos during the film production of "Mandalas Mata" directed by Jeorge Añonuevo
Despite all that, Jeorge who is a Cabuyao, Laguna native remained true to his vision. He is eager to tell his story to the world and while it is challenging to create a film, his passion and dedication kept him going.
“Every film must have a moral lesson. Bilang isang filmmaker, lagi kong tinatatak sa isip ko na dapat ay may mapulot na aral at ma-inspire ang bawat manonood sa kwento ng pelikula, especially teenagers.”
“Our film was dedicated to those aspiring filmmakers or aspirants of different fields. Layunin ng palabas na ito na kahit anong mangyari o kahit anong problema pa ang dumating sa atin ay dapat lamang tayong tumingin sa ating patutunguhan, lakarin ang tuwid na daan at huwag mag papaapekto sa mga bagay na humahadlang sa atin.”
When asked if there’s anyone who has impacted his life when it comes to filmmaking, Jeorge happily recalls Mr. Ryan Audencial.
“He is a Director at TV5, admin of RASCA group. His life or his struggles before he reached his current position is truly inspiring. Hindi siya sumuko sa mga downs niya sa buhay, instead, it motivated him para mas lalong lumaban at magpatuloy sa buhay.”
At present, Jeorge is working as a graphics designer in a real-estate company but he says that he is more than excited to continue creating more stories.
“Our future films will be inspired from the different lives of successful people. Mga taong nagsimula sa wala at nagtagumpay sa buhay.”
Even at a young age, Jeorge Añonuevo has proven that it only takes one step to reach your dream no matter how far it looks. As long as you’re determined and you know your purpose, a dream is never impossible.
As a starting filmmaker himself, he also shared an advice to his fellow storytellers:
“Huwag kang tamarin sa ginagawa mo. Turn your simple life into an inspirational one. CAPTURE every moment in your life, FOCUS on your goal, EDIT OUT negativities, PUBLISH your works and let your success be your noise.”
You may follow Jeorge Añonuevo and get a glimpse of his creative world HERE.