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Friday, April 18, 2008


"Genghis Khan" (1950) was the first Filipino movie to receive international recognition and wide acclaim which was entered in the "main competition" of the 1952 Venice Film Festival.

Manuel Conde, talking about the special screening of "Genghis Khan" for movie director Carl Foreman and film critic James Agee, the latter of whom was greatly responsible for bringing Genghis Khan to the 1952 Venice Film Festival where it competed with the world’s best films:

“I was very nervous during the screening, especially the part when the horses came. ‘ Yun mga nakuha naming sa Binondo… Pinagtawanan kami noon sa Times Theater' (Those we got from Binondo. We were the laughing stock at Times Theater.) They were amazed. Yun pala ang genuine Mongolian horses. Sa America wala no’n. Sa Europe wala noon. Yung kinahihiya ko was the asset of my movie' (Those turned out to be the genuine Mongolian horses. They didn’t have those in America. On Europe for that matter. What I was ashamed of turned out to be the movie’s asset.) James then asked me, “How much did you spend on this movie?” "I told him php125, 000. That money was not enough to open the gates to Hollywood in the morning. But then I was the director, walang bayad. I was the star, walang bayad. I was the writer, walang bayad. I was the janitor, the messenger."

“I had been told that I was a genius. I told him that there was a difference. Orson Welles is writer-director-star because he is a genius. Manuel Conde does it for lack of money."

Source: The Folk Philosopher in the Land of Juan Tamad
by Agustin Sotto-Vic Delotavo
Urian Anthology (1970-79)

More on Manuel Conde


James DR said...

Thanks, Simon, for this movie ad of Genghis Khan which I've been waiting for!


Senor Enrique said...

This is one amazing piece of trivia, Simon!

I once saw a Manuel Conde (Juan Tamad) film with my father when I was a kid. I don't remember, however, its plot.

Video 48 said...

Hi James!
It was long overdue! I'm looking for a nice Genghis Khan ad to compliment the trivia.

Video 48 said...

Thank you, Eric! I always admired the works of Manuel Conde, especially his Juan Tamad series. Another lost treasure from a great filmmaker.

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