Category Archives: Interview

Finally giving Paco a voice to defend himself

El documental sobre Paco Larrañaga…

Rappler Video Report by Carlos Santamaria

Rappler: Film seeks justice for Paco Larrañaga

Filmmakers on GMA News in Philippines


Video interview in San Sebastian by arteUParte magazine

Radio interview with Spanish Translation

Interview with Japanese Magazine COOL-NY

Give Up Tomorrow Featured on Philippine TV

ABS CBN Reports on Give Up Tomorrow

By Nadia Trinidad, ABS CBN North America Bureau

SAN FRANCISCO– A feature-length film on one of the most controversial cases in the Philippines has captured the attention of the Filipino community in San Francisco, challenging it to think deeper about the justice system in the Philippines.

“Give Up Tomorrow” is a critically acclaimed documentary about Paco Larrañga, who was accused of the murder of the Chiong sisters in Cebu in 1997. Larranaga was 19 when he was convicted along with six others for the kidnap and murder of Marijoy and Jacqueline Chiong. It was a celebrated case because the crime was so heinous and the antagonist comes from a wealthy political family. But the film dares to ask: what if Larranga was innocent?

From American director Michael Collins and Filipino producer Marty Syjuco, ‘Give Up Tomorrow’ prods the viewer with uncomfortable truths about police and underworld collusion, corruption and class wars in the Philippines.

Collins said they gathered about 50 hours worth of footage of what is dubbed as Cebu’s trial of the century.

“One of the most shocking things to me was that there was this blatant injustice happening right in front of media and they were just very eager to believe that he was this rich bad boy trying to get away with murder instead of doing a little bit of investigating,” Collins said.

Producer Marty Syjuco, who admits being related to the Larranagas by affinity said they’ve taken a personal journey into Larranaga’s pursuit of the truth simply because no one else did.

“As a Filipino born and schooled in the Philippines I see that we become immune (to a lot of) to a lot of injustice (that take place) that takes place in front of us because it’s everywhere,” Syjuco said.

The multi awarded film has been shown around the world.

When it premiered at the International Asian American Film Festival in San Francisco, many were stirred into action, signing petitions to free Larranaga. Some Filipinos said they were embarrassed to show the world that this is the kind of justice system that prevails in the homeland.

“Now hopefully, with the new president, with President Aquino, he’ll take a look at it. Knowing that he’s trying to clean up the Philippines, I hope that this is something he puts focus on,” viewer Eguzki Olano said.

The documentary will be participating in the Cinemalaya festival this coming July in Manila.

By Nadia Trinidad, ABS CBN North America Bureau