ANIMA’s ‘Leonor Will Never Die’ opens 2022 Cinemalaya

Finally, four years after its screening was postponed in Cinemalaya, the award-winning psychological comedy-drama film “Leonor Will Never Die” (Filipino title: “Ang Pagbabalik ng Kwago”), produced by ANIMA and Arkeo Films, finally held Philippine premiere at this year’s Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival as the Opening Film of its 18th edition.

“Leonor Will Never Die” was a smashing hit during its world premiere in January 2022. In fact, it bagged the Sundance Special Jury Award for Innovative Spirit at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival. It has also been shown at various movie screenings in the Czech Republic, Switzerland and Taiwan, among others. 

“Parang kaming niyakap. Cinemalaya has been a huge part of my life as a film lover – simula nung high school as an audience hanggang nung screening ng thesis ko, at ngayon sa first feature. Katabi ko ang Cinemalaya every step of the way and so I’m so happy na dito unang maipapalabas ang pelikula namin!” said its director Martika Ramirez Escobar. 

The award-winning film focuses on stage veteran Sheila Francisco’s titular character, Leonor, a major player in the Filipino film industry in the ‘80s, who falls into a coma before finishing her final screenplay. When she regains consciousness years later, she struggles to complete her magnum opus while navigating life in an entirely new environment.

The film, Escobar’s directorial debut, has been lauded by critics here and abroad for its meta storytelling that combines a fever dream premise with a postmodern reality topped with sharp dialogue delivered by an outstanding ensemble. 

ANIMA, KROMA Entertainment Inc.’s film production studio, continues its winning streak, having won big awards at the recently concluded 70th Filipino Academy of Movie Arts and Sciences (FAMAS) Awards for Kun Maupay Man It Panahon top-billed by Charo Santos and Daniel Padilla.

Visit ANIMA’s official website at to discover more of the production studio’s award-winning filmography and other works.


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