Prod firm behind ‘Mallari’ to make movie about ‘lost city of Biringan’

March 11, 2024 - 5:49 PM
Image from the Facebook page of Mentorque Productions posted on March 10, 2024 (mentorque/Facebook)

The creative powerhouse behind the second best film in the 2023 Metro Manila Film Festival announced that it will create a movie inspired by one of the country’s most enigmatic legends.

Mentorque Productions on Sunday said that its latest cinematic project will tackle the “lost City of Biringan.”

The production company said that it the project is set against the Philippine landscape and will bring audiences closer to the mysterious city “famed for its advanced technology and ethereal beauty.”

It also said it is the first time the legend will be brought to life through the silver screen.

Producer John Bryan Diamante shared that their mission is “to transcend the boundaries of traditional filmmaking.”

“With the success of ‘Mallari,’ we have learned so much and were able to export our vision and craftmanship to the world,” he said, referring to their first film that won four awards in the 2023 MMFF, including a Best Supporting Actor for JC Santos.

“Mallari” was also the first mainstream Filipino film distributed by Hollywood-based production company Warner Bros.

“We’re delving deep into the heart of Philippine folklore to present a story that’s both universally appealing and deeply personal. It’s about exploring unknown worlds, but it’s also about the discovery of the self and the power of unseen forces that shape our lives,” Diamante added.

Mentorque said more details about their latest film, cast, release date and teaser trailers will be revealed soon.

The production company said that it is committed to creating movies that does not only entertain, but also educate and enlighten.

“With this latest venture, the studio continues its tradition of bringing meaningful stories to life, inviting audiences everywhere to explore the unseen and rediscover the magic of the world around us,” it added.

Mentorque is a pioneering film production company known for its innovative approach to storytelling and its commitment to showcasing Philippine culture on the global stage.

Meanwhile, its next cinematic project was welcomed by Filipinos who expressed their anticipation in the comments.

“I’m invested in all of these stories about Biringan. This better be good,” a Facebook user wrote with a heart-eyed emoji.

“Cant waiiiiiittt!!!!! Super ganda ng Mallari, and hoping na matapatan or mahigitan [‘yun]! Good luck to all,” another user commented with a starry-eyed emoji.

“Looking forward to this, [especially] sa mga mahilig sa folk tales ng Pinas,” wrote a different Pinoy.

“Yay! Finally! The City of Engkantos,” exclaimed another user. 

The legend of Biringan 

Local folklore says that Biringan City is an otherworldly place inhabited by “engkantos” or enchanted beings that are said to be nature spirits.

Legends say that the city is located between the towns of Pagsanghan and Gandara in the Samar province in Visayas.

The phantom city is said to have high-rise buildings and technology that is more advanced than those in first-world countries. It is also said to be filled with wonderful lights.

The enigmatic city is also described as a place of unparalleled magnificence and architecture.

Folklore said that Biringan never shows itself to anyone, except those who are invited. It is said to have seven different portals across the Western, Eastern and Northern parts of Samar Island.

GMA News previously aired a documentary where locals told stories of loaded delivery trucks from Manila looking for an address in Biringan.

Jhonil Bajado, head of the Samar State University Museum and Archives, previously suggested that people claiming to have seen the awe-inspiring city were simply yearning for progress in Samar.

“Maybe they were just dreaming during those times. Our dreams are an extension of our realities, our hopes, our aspirations, and our frustrations. Maybe they have been dreaming of progress and development, and these became part of their subconscious,” he said in a 2021 interview.