Charlene Sawit Esguerra.
Charlene is a screenwriter for feature films based in Manila. She has worked on big box office hits as well as successful and critically acclaimed independent films in a wide range of genres (romantic comedy, dramas, action and adventure, and suspense/horror films). Charlene was among the recipients of the 2018 Camera Obscura Artistic Excellence Award, the Film Development Council of the Philippines’ most prestigious honor bestowed on outstanding members of the film community. Prior to her screenwriting career, Charlene worked in advertising as a copywriter for McCann Erickson Philippines on some of their biggest accounts (Nestlé, Jollibee, Unilever), and in magazine publishing as a features editor for Homestyle (design/lifestyle and architecture), as well as contributing features writer, illustrator, stylist and for national magazines and broadsheets. Her short fiction has been published in various magazines such as Esquire Philippines. She also has an MA in Novel Writing from the University of Manchester, and won the Mulcahy Viney prize for best novel-in-progress.
One of her films, Saving Sally, has been described by the BBC (UK) as “A tale of unrequited teenage love terrorized by giant animated monsters in the chaotic streets of Manila” and was one of the eight films chosen out of hundreds of entries to premiere at the 2016 Metro Manila Film Festival. Nominated for best screenplay at the festival and by the Film Academy of the Philippines, the film went on to screen at over 20 film festivals worldwide and has garnered over 14 awards, including the Main Competition Jury Prize, Audience Choice Award and Orient Express Honorable Mention at the 2017 Fantasporto Film Fest in Portugal, the Audience Choice Award at the 2017 Lund International Fantastic Film Festival in Sweden, the Special Jury Prize and Audience Choice Award at the 2017 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, the Special Jury Award at the 2017 Seoul International Cartoon & Animation Festival in Korea, Best Family Film at the 2017 Bentonville Film Festival, USA, the Jury Special Mention at the Brussels International Fantastic Film Fest in Belgium, and the Audience Choice Award at 2017 HARD:LINE International Film Festival in Germany.
In 2018 Charlene finished work on a mainstream superhero film that is in production, and she is currently head writer for an 8-part dramatic series developed by an international studio, which is slated to begin shooting in 2019