Raymond Red is one of the pioneers of modern Filipino independent and alternative cinema. Having a background in Fine Arts
and photography, he began by making numerous experimental and narrative super-8mm and 16mm short films in
the 1980s, the tumultuous era that began in the 70s, from which true alternative and independent filmmaking emerged. Red immediately gained recognition by winning awards and citations, both
locally and at the international film festivals scene. He had then, at an early age, begun to
inspire a new generation of independent filmmakers. He has since become a
regular lecturer and instructor in various film workshops and in film, fine
arts, and mass communications college programs, mentoring early on quite a number of
the prominent Filipino independent filmmakers of today.
In 1990 he was invited to the
prestigious DAAD Berlin Artists in Residence program, where he was also awarded
a film production grant by ZDF 2nd German Television. He then produced his
first full-length feature film “BAYANI” (Heroes, 1992), a low-budget historical bio-pic, it was one of the first truly “alternative”
Filipino films released in commercial
cinemas and garnered nominations and awards from the mainstream industry awards institutions, thus has been considered by some as the indie film that bridged the gap between the alternative and mainstream cinema. He later made two other critically acclaimed full length features, “SAKAY” (1993) another historical epic which won awards
at the Manila Film Festival, and “KAMADA” (1997) a television feature that won
awards from the Philippine Broadcasters Association and the Asian TV Awards.
Red has earned the distinction of being one of the first Filipinos to receive
a Rotterdam Hubert Bals Memorial grant, and the first and so far only Filipino to have
won the prestigious Palme d’Or award at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival
Red is also active in television commercials and music video production for many years, while also doing a few more experimental short works, among them "Salvaged Commercialism" 2002, "Melancholy" in 2004, "Mistulang
Kamera Obskura” in 2006, "Pusila" in 2010, and "Bangin" in 2011. He has finally released his new full length feature, entitled "HIMPAPAWID" (Manila Skies). The film has already gained critical acclaim, has screened in over 16 international film festivals including official selection in London, Tokyo, Rotterdam, Hamburg, Barcelona, Hawaii, Montreal, Los Angeles, and New York, while in the Philippines it has received from the various awards institutions (Filipino Film Critics Gawad Urian, Movie & Televison Classification board, and the Young Critics' Circle) 3 best film nominations, and has won 2 best film awards, 2 best direction awards, 2 best cinematography awards, 2 best screenplay awards, and 1 each for best design and best editing. For performances, it has won an award each for best actor, best supporting actress, and best supporting actor.
Raymond Red has recently been given rare recognition with the prestigious Pag-Alab ng Sining (Flame of the Arts) Award by the State University's College of Fine Arts. He now joins the ranks of distinguished recipients, among them are acclaimed Filipino artists Jose Joya, Larry Alcala, Ben Cabrera, to name a few.
In July 2012 Red released his newest feature film KAMERA OBSKURA, a tribute to Filipino cinema heritage, as part of the Directors' Showcase at the 2012 Cinemalaya Independent Film festival. It won for him the Best Director award, Special Jury Prize, and the Best Music Score for Diwa de Leon.