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Journeyman Finds Home screenings at Cinemalaya and Black Maria

Simone Rota with football fans at the screening in Tagum, Davao del Norte. (from Davao Aguilas FB page)

After SRO previews in the South, the award-winning documentary “Journeyman Finds Home: The Simone Rota Story” resumes its screening series in Manila. The docu is included in the lineup of the country’s most prestigious independent filmfests, and is among the featured films at one of Metro Manila’s newly-reopened microcinemas.

“Journeyman Finds Home…” is showing at the Cinema Philippine Independent Film Festival on August 8, Wednesday, at 3:30 pm; venue is at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Dream Theater.

The film is also scheduled for a weeklong run, from August 17 to 23, at the Black Maria Cinema (779 San Rafael Street, SQ Film Laboratories Building, Plainview, Mandaluyong City); 50 percent of ticket sales of the Black Maria screenings are going to be donated to the NGO Buklod Kalinga Para sa Kapwa Foundation.

The documentary tells the struggles of Filipino-Italian footaller Simone Rota to meet life’s setbacks with positivity: finding his biological mother, sustaining a career in professional football in the Philippines, playing for the Azkals national team, and overcoming multiple sports injuries. “Journeyman Finds Home: The Simone Rota Story,” directed by Albert Almendralejo and Maricel Cariaga, has won numerous awards, including Audience Prize at the 2018 European Philippine International Film Festival in Italy, and the Documentary Jury Prize at the 2018 Sinag Maynila Film Festival. The Cinema Evaluation Board (CEB), which gave it an “A,” describes it as a “fine brace of a documentary.”

Last July, screenings were organized in Davao City and Tagum City, thanks to the efforts of the Davao-based football associations, and the Davao Aguilas FC — the professional football club that Simone plays for. These events were made more memorable with the presence of Simone and the Davao Aguilas who brought cheer to the audience composed of football fans, grassroots players, and sports enthusiasts.

“Simone and his teammates Patrick Deyto, Reymart Cubin, Diego Alves, and Wes dos Santos also graced the Tagum event that had the orphans of the Tejada Foundation as special guests,” said director-producer Albert Almendralejo. “So the cycle of kindness continues… Simone who was adopted as a child met the children of the Tejada Foundation whose chosen sport is football.”

“Journeyman Finds Home” is also part of Mindanao1 Futbol talent identification program spearheaded by Coach Percy Guarin, head of the Misamis Oriental-Camiguin-Gingoog El Salvador Cagayan de Oro Football Association, and former national team player. “One of the latest screenings that we had was in Butuan where there were 200 kids in the audience,” said Coach Percy. “We show the film to touch the lives of the kids and give them hope that someday their dream will be a reality.”

SPEARS Films, the company behind “Journeyman…” is open to collaborating with different groups or organizations in organizing more screenings. For updates and inquires, check out Journeyman Finds Home: The Simone Rota Story on Facebook.

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