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Paul Soriano's 'The Fisher' makes waves at Tokyo International Film Festival

November 8 ------ Filmmaker Paul Soriano was euphoric over his latest film "The Fisher'' which made waves at the recent Tokyo International Film Festival. He also shared his domestic bliss with his wife, Toni Gonzaga, and their two children. "Toni and I are doing great, thanks for asking. The new baby (Polly) is such a wonderful blessing and a great addition to our family," said Paul during an interview recently. "Seve (the elder child) has now become a Kuya. Toni and I are now parents to two beautiful, healthy, and blessed children. We couldn't be any happier."

When asked if Toni would go back to showbiz, the award-winning director said: "Toni took a break because of Baby Polly. Now she's back to shooting and will do more hosting. She has also started vlogging again. I’m happy for Toni kasi even when she was pregnant, hindi siya tumitigil thinking of ways to express her creative side. My wife is an avid learner. Mahilig magbasa, manuod, and to find out what's new." Paul and his wife will continue pursuing their passions and working hard. "We simply wish to continue being thankful as we spend more time with our family and friends while also pursuing our passions and working hard. Dalawa na'ng anak namin, and it gives us so many reasons to feel blessed and to look forward to new opportunities, with faith in our hearts that the best is yet to be," he added.

Making waves

Paul, 42, said he is thrilled about the movie "The Fisher" which he wrote, directed and produced. "I’m inspired to tell stories. My passion is to tell stories and make films with unique narratives and subtle messages that will hopefully move my audience" said Paul when asked what inspired him to come up with his latest film. "As I was researching, writing, reading articles, and watching documentaries, I stumbled upon these myths or short stories about grandmothers who live in the province, lalo na near the coastal towns or baybay dagat. "Ang daming kwento galing sa mga Lola, Nanay at matatanda sa probinsya na hanggang ngayon ay sinusunod pa rin. Hindi man natin naiintindihan kung bakit, pero may mga sumusunod o natatakot na hindi sumunod, kahit may pagka-mysterious or folkloric sounding. Mahirap i-explain kung minsan pero marami sa atin ang may paniniwala tungkol sa misteryo ng karagatan. That was the idea behind 'The Fisher,' " Paul explained. "Sinusulat ko pa lang, meron na akong naisip na ending. Alam ko na kung ano ang kahihinatnan ng mga characters."

"The Fisher" is a story of a Filipino fisherman who discovers a Chinese fisherman one morning. The movie, called "The Fisher," explores the relationship between Pedro and Hai. It stars Mon Confiado, Enchong Dee, Eula Valdez, and Mercedes Cabral. "Pedro is played by Mon Confiado, and Enchong Dee plays Hai. We have a Filipino fisherman and a Chinese fisherman, and in the beginning, it is a challenge for them to become friends. However, as they live and learn to live together, we see their friendship develop into something great that brings prosperity to both of them without giving away too much," Paul said. He said that "The Fisher" is based on myths that are believed to be true. He explained how the cast for the movie was selected. "When it came to casting, I personally chose most of the actors. Mon Confiado, Eula Valdez, and Mercedes Cabral are incredibly talented actors. I also specifically chose Enchong Dee for the role of Hai because he is a great actor and artist and a champion swimmer, which was crucial for his character's role and interaction with the ocean. "For the role of Simone, we held auditions, and Heaven Peralejo, who perfectly embodied the character, ultimately won the part," he also said.

Paul said "The Fisher" will have a theatrical run in the Philippines soon. "Hopefully it will then be available for streaming." "We are currently in discussions for distribution in other countries. There has been a lot of interest, and my experience in Tokyo and at the Tokyo International Film Festival was wonderful. Ang saya! The audiences in Tokyo are serious about cinema, and we had two successful screenings of 'The Fisher' with fantastic Q&A sessions afterward. Whenever I'm back in Tokyo, especially for the Tokyo International Film Festival, it's always a great experience," he recalled. Paul said this was his third time in Tokyo. "I was there for 'Kid Kulafu' and 'Mañanita,' which was in competition, and now for 'The Fisher' in the world focus section." "There will be more international festivals featuring 'The Fisher.' We will inform you as soon as the festivals make their announcements." Prior to "The Fisher," Paul was involved in the movie "My Teacher." He remains focused on filmmaking. "I am still very much focused on telling stories, producing for other filmmakers, collaborating with other filmmakers, and producing my films. Hindi na yon mawawala sa akin because I am really a filmmaker by heart," he added.



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