Direk Carlo Catuâs passion & dream
Carlo Enciso Catu: My education helps me see the good things in everything. It taught me to persevere amidst challenges.

Direk Carlo Catu’s passion & dream

Rogelio Constantino Medina (The Philippine Star) - August 29, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Angeles City-born director Carlo Enciso Catu, (turning 25 on Sept. 26) felt very happy not only for himself but also for all the people who worked with him to make the film Kung Paano Hinihintay ang Dapithapon, this year’s Cinemalaya’s Best Film winner.

He admitted that he never really thought about filmmaking until he joined the regional film competition Cinekabalen Kapampangan Film Festival in 2011 and made his first short film, Lakbe.

“I was a theater actor of Mr. Bicong del Rosario when I heard about Cinekabalen Kapampangan Film Festival. My co-theater actors Ate Michelle Ong, Erica Adams and Vyron Vallejos all encouraged me to join the competition with them as my producers and actors. I remember enjoying the process of filmmaking. Since then, it has become my passion and dream,” said director Catu, who took a hotel and restaurant management course at Holy Angel University’s (HAU) School of Hospitality and Tourism Management (SHTM), which is the first and only higher educational institution in the Philippines to have achieved ACPHA (Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration) accreditation.

For him, it was fun but not easy for he had to juggle his studies while working.

“I graduated in 2014 when I also finished making my first (full-length) film Ari: My Life with a King (produced by HAU). My course is useful in my work as a director because it helps me manage multiple departments to make a shoot successful. My education at HAU helps me see the good things in everything. It taught me to persevere amidst challenges. At an early age, I was trained to balance both work and my studies in HAU. It has defined my work ethics and life values even up to today.”

HAU’s president Luis Maria Calingo (who is reappointed to the 2018 Board of Examiners for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award), vice president Robby Tantingco and dean Gertrude Tuazon are proud of Catu for exhibiting the core value of excellence that in whatever undertaking he pursues he makes sure it is world class. 

His next film, Aria, also produced by HAU, is more ambitious than Ari which is “now a modern classic having won many awards and accolades both here and abroad and is listed as one of the best films in the 21st century.”

“It is about the untold stories of the Hukbalahap during the Japanese occupation in the Philippines, particularly in Pampanga. It also follows the important roles of the women during this period. Since it is larger in scale compared to my previous films, we are still in our post-production stage, but hopefully, the film will be ready before the year ends,” explained Catu, third of the five children of Carmelito and Joy Catu.

He is also doing the movie Mga Anak ng Kamote, an official entry to this year’s Tofarm Film Festival. It stars Katrina Halili, Alex Vincent Medina, Kiko Matos and Carl Guevarra and is written by John Carlo Pacala.

If his schedule permits, he usually reflects on the week that just passed. He loves to cook for his family, spends time with his little brother and niece and nephews, watches movies, reads books and jogs or does other physical activities.

“As a student assistant assigned to the library during both my high school and college years, I spent a lot of time reading books. I remember enjoying the novels of Nicholas Sparks, Paulo Coelho, Mitch Albom, Edgar Samar and Ricky Lee,” said Catu who admires directors Wong Kar-wai, Hirokazu Kore-eda, Christian Petzold, Peque Gallaga and Jun Robles Lana. Recently, he also became an avid viewer of Ryan Murphy’s TV series.

As to his guiding principle in life, he remarked, “Ate Mich Ong, a very good friend of mine, once shared to me her rule of thumb: The 3 H’s, honesty, hard work and humility. Up to now, I am trying my best to keep those principles in everything I do.”

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