Culion: The Optimistic, The Believer, The Hopeless

Although leprosy on the island-town of Culion was abolished in the 1980s, it was only in 2006 when it was declared a leprosy-free area by the World Health Organization. 

Writer Ricky Lee and director Alvin Yapan will take us to 1940s when a cure from leprosy is still far from being made, when hope is lost for most patients and when the families and friends you have are the people around you, also diagnosed with leprosy.

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Here’s the official synopsis of ‘Culion’:

This is as much the story of three women as it is the story of Culion.

In the 1940s, Anna, Doris and Ditas are three leper patients who live in Culion at a time when the disease is practically a life sentence. No cure has yet been found, and no one is allowed to leave.

You live and die there. It is why the place is called the Land of the Living Dead.

Anna (Iza Calzado) never loses hope that soon a cure will be found, even when her baby is taken away from her. Doris believes in the myth that a beautiful diwata will soon heal the place. Ditas (Meryll Soriano) keeps attempting to kill herself, helpless against the onslaught of memories from the outside world.

Together the three friends try to negotiate a life of stigma that seesaws between hope and despair, redefining their roles as women, mother, friend, and human being. In the end they prove that neither disease nor death can erase their humanity and their capacity to endure.

The film, directed by Alvin Yapan and written by Ricky Lee is produced by Mark Shandii Bacolod and iOptions Ventures. Culion is intended to be submitted to the Metro Manila Film Festival 2019.

Watch our interviews from the people behind ‘Culion’ below:

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