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Leonor Will Never Die film image, director Martika Ramirez Escobar

Leonor Will Never Die

Ang Pagbabalik ng Kwago

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Once a prominent action filmmaker, Leonor spends her senior years with the ghost of her dead son and the pestering, very alive presence of her younger son. In her cramped apartment, she distracts herself from overdue electricity bills by daydreaming about her movies, until a freak accident causes her to fall into a coma. In this liminal state, Leonor magically finds herself in the production of one of her own long-forgotten, unfinished screenplays, blurring the lines between reality and dream, life and death. Colourful, exuberant, packed with thrills and B-movie nostalgia, writer-director Martika Ramirez Escobar’s debut feature is an homage to the power of stories, the enduring force of grief, and a tender love letter to filmmaking itself. 2022 winner of the Special Jury Prize for Innovative Spirit at Sundance.

Packed with self-reflexive humor and a deep reverence for the art of filmmaking, Leonor Will Never Die establishes writer/director Martika Ramirez Escobar as an artist with a singular voice and bright future in halls of weird cinema.”—Marya E. Gates,

Amplify Voices Award, TIFF 2022 & World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award: Innovative Spirit, Sundance 2022


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Sheila Francisco, Bong Cabrera, Rocky Salumbides, Anthony Falcon

Country of Origin





In Filipino and English with English subtitles

Film Contact
99 min
Action & Suspense Award Winners Comedy Women Directors

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Executive Producer

Aurora Oreta, Martika Ramirez Escobar, Quark Henares


Monster Jimenez, Mario Cornejo


Martika Ramirez Escobar


Carlos Mauricio


Lawrence S. Ang

Production Design

Eero Yves S. Francisco

Original Music

Alyana Cabral and Pan De Coco


Martika Ramirez Escobar headshot, Leonor Will Never Die director

Martika Ramirez Escobar

Martika Ramirez Escobar was born in Manila in 1992. Her love for the bizarre is best reflected through her films and photography. After graduating with honours from the University of the Philippines, her thesis film Pusong Bato (2014) competed at the Busan International Film Festival and won Best Film at the Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival. Her short film Quadrilaterals (2017) premiered at the DMZ International Documentary Film Festival. She is currently working as a freelance director-cinematographer for various production houses in Manila.