February 6, 2023

BONTOC, Mountain Province – Two filmmakers from the Ilocos Region who opted to make this town their town their home for almost six years now have recently been adopted as son and daughter of Bontoc.

Mark Lester Menor Valle, who traces his roots in San Carlos City, Pangasinan and Bauang, La Union; and his partner, Carla Samantha Pulido Ocampo who is from Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija and Sanchez Mira, Cagayan, were adopted as Ifontoks through resolutions passed by the sangguniang bayan.

Mayor Franklin Odsey approved the resolution, affirming that Valle and Ocampo have shown remarkable and admirable character worthy of emulation by the community and have unselfishly shared their talents and skill to young people of Bontoc.

As adopted children of Bontoc, Valle was given the name “Ngawit” while Ocampo was named “Khayapon” in a ceremony witnessed by municipal officials and employees during the regular Monday flag raising ceremony on Sept. 28 at the Bontoc Municipal Capitol grounds.

Odsey said Valle and Ocampo have embraced and respected the culture and traditions of the community.

He added their talents and skills in the production of the documentary film “Walang Rape sa Bontoc” and short film “Tokwifi” have garnered prestigious international and national awards that brought recognition and put the municipality and the Ifontoks in the spotlight.

 “Walang Rape sa Bontoc” was directed Valle and written by Ocampo in 2014. It has been recognized by numerous government agencies, private and public institutions, and academes for its gender and development advocacy.

Among the notable awards conferred to the documentary film are the Special Jury Mention in the Cine Totoo Philippine International Documentary Film Festival 2014; Finalist Certificate in the New York Festivals Best TV and Films 2015; Special Citation in the Gender-fair Documentary-GADTimpala Awards 2015; Best Documentary in the 38th Gawad Urian 2015; Breakthrough Film Award in the 9th Pandayang Lino Brocka 2017; and Inner Wheel’s Choice in the 9th Pandayang Lino Brock 2017. 

Tokwifi, directed by Ocampo in 2019, is the Best Film and National Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema Awardee in the 2020 Cinemalaya, a major film festival in the Philippines.

The short film was co-produced by the local government of Bontoc and was shot in locations within the town. It features artists and members of the community. – Press release