Basurero shares its back story at RIFF 2021 Q&A

As I evolve as a storyteller, I am realizing how storytelling continues to deepen this existence by connecting me with others in such moving conversations.

Amongst my family, childhood friends, even my third grade teacher, an author, poet, artist named Ryan Kent appeared. he was representing RVA Magazine covering the Richmond International Film Festival screening.

I learned that Ryan thought the film was about drug addiction. He was completely taken by the film and what it was really about. I don’t think he knew much at all about the Philippines and its layered indigenous colonized history and complex psyche.

He had no idea about the thousands of extra-judicial drug-war killings. Just like many of the audience members that have screened the film outside of SE Asia- like in Finland, Portugal, Johannesburg, Dublin, Canada, Mexico, Greece, Denmark, Turkey…For most of the world, the Philippines and what is happening there is barely covered in the World News. At least that is the case here in the United States.

BUT for me – I am a Filipino. It is the divine clay I have been gifted in this lifetime to play with, explore with and work with as an artist and storyteller. Life for me as a Filipino is cathartic — controversial, treacherous, mystical, whimsical, deeply painful at times, conflicted, angry — transformative, at the very same time humorous (joke-joke), happy, tribal and beautiful. I mean colorful!

The Basurero team of artists and I never intended on having any didactic answers when making this film. For us it was an exploration into a psyche of a man willing to dump killed bodies for cash. What is that inner landscape about? How is that justified? Why is he doing this? We wanted to pose the question – How can one find self-value, love and purpose in a system or mind-set that does not care for or value him?

And as we developed the story, prepped and edited — it enlightened us all how “the mundane-day after” can reveal so much.

I am honored to share this one artist’s (journalist, musician, poet, author) – Ryan Kent’s- thought-provoking insights about our film and how it affected him personally.

Thanks Ryan for watching our film and for the conversation. It means so much that our film from the Philippines is creating discussion, making its impact on a personal and collective level.

Thank you RVA Magazine for the the space to be heard, especially in my the town where I grew up as a minority and often felt unseen and unheard.

Click here to read the whole article. 

Get updates about Direk Eileen and Basurero by liking and following our Facebook and Instagram accounts @basurerofilm

Direk Eileen talks about her Fil-Am roots on Ep48 of ShoPowSho

I’m honored to share this talk with Patrick Michael Strange,  on being a Filipino and creating Filipino Stories.  I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the many identities we take on in life. Although these identities are not who we are — it is our clay in this life time to work with.

One of mine is being a Filipino-American. I am so grateful for this opportunity!  Filipinos all over the world have been handed a deep and colorful card.

Thanks to Patrick Michael Strange and his team – Kat Stevens and Tina Michelle for shining the light on Filipino voices all over the world and for continuing the conversations.

Click here to see our talk.

Get updates from Basurero by liking and following our Facebook and Instagram accounts @basurerofilm

Direk Eileen Cabiling hosts PIXNOYS on Aug. 28

Catch Direk Eileen Cabiling on August 28, 8 pm EST (August 29, 8 am, Manila), as she chats with Pinoy animation giants, Ronnie Del Carmen, and Ricky Nierva to talk about animation as a craft, and the process behind producing it.


RICKY NIERVA joined Pixar Animation Studios in May 1997. He began with the animation team as a visual development artist and did additional storyboarding on Toy Story 2. He was the lead character designer for Monster’s Inc. and was awarded an Annie Award as the character art director for the Academy Award® winning feature Finding Nemo and led the production design on Up and Monster’s University. Nierva was born in San Diego.


RONNIE DEL CARMEN is a Filipino animation writer, director, story artist, story supervisor and production designer. He did story work on Oscar winning Ratatouille. He co-directed and was one of the story writers for the 2015 Oscar Winning Best Animated Feature Pixar film Inside Out, for which he was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. He was the story supervisor on Pixar’s tenth full-length computer-animated film, Up and directed its accompanying short film, Dug’s Special Mission.


EILEEN CABILING has been venturing in the magical World of Animation since 2004. She started as a Production Supervisor for Nickelodeon’s JIMMY NEUTRON, RUGRATS IN PARIS, and WILD THORNBERRY feature film campaigns and eventually became a Staff Writer for Walt Disney’s Emmy-nominated series, MY FRIENDS TIGGER AND POOH. She story developed and was the Show Runner and Co-Creator for a green animated series titled WORLD of ANIA and KIN by COPA STUDIOS for DISCOVERY KIDS. She continues to work as a Story Development Writer and Producer on Animated Children and Young Adult Series for production companies, mini and major studios.


Get more information about the event here. 


Sign up for the event here. 

Basurero attends the Filmmaker Chat at WHFF 2021

Basurero continues to be screened live and online at the 30th Annual Woods Hole Film Festival, and Direk Eileen Cabiling and Darlene Malimas, Producer, engaged with other filmmakers from other stellar short films Limestone, Such A Deal, and Or, the Whale for the Filmmaker Chat.  Hosted by Steve Young, the discussion was held last July 25 at 10 am.

Watch the panel discussion here. 

For more information and ticket details, visit

Get updated with the latest from Basurero by liking, following, and sharing its social media accounts on Facebook and Instagram @basurerofilm.

Danny De Lillo interviews Direk Eileen Cabiling for the NFMLA

Basurero is grateful to NewFilmmakers Los Angeles and Danny De Lillo of Stage Five MovieMaker Magazine and FilmLA for the talk with Direk Eileen Cabiling about the making of Basurero.  We are honored for the opportunity to be part of your visionary series.

Host Danny De Lillo sat down with filmmaker Eileen Cabiling to talk about the making of her film Basurero.

NewFilmmakers LA (NFMLA) screens monthly at South Park Center. Each month, NewFilmmakers Los Angeles (NFMLA) presents red carpet screenings of documentary, short, and feature films that have been selected from submissions from all over the world, followed by a Q&A with each films director. NFMLA provides a forum where filmmakers can be recognized for their contributions, have open audience discussions about their projects, and connect with industry professionals for insight on distribution, production, acquisition, and representation.

Catch the full interview with Direk Eileen Cabiling here.

Get updates from Basurero by liking, sharing, and following our social media accounts @basurerofilm on Facebook and Instagram.

Watch Direk Eileen Cabiling and Producer Darlene Malimas in Bakunawa 7’s Conversations with Filmmakers

Join Producer Darlene Catly Malimas and Direk Eileen Cabiling – for a conversation about Basurero and on making Social Impact Cinema this Saturday.


For broadcast via Facebook Live on MAY 29 (SAT, 2 PM PHILIPPINE TIME)

Basurero’s trailer for Bakunawa 7.

Go to film info and link ►

NYFA’s The Backlot highlights Direk Eileen and her creative process

Writer, Director, and Producer Eileen Cabiling discuss her creative process and her inspiration for the critically acclaimed short film Basurero at the New York Film Academy’s The Backlot.

Listen to the podcast here.

Get updates from Basurero by liking, following, and sharing our Facebook and Instagram accounts @basurerofilm.

Eileen Cabiling guests in Democracy News Live to discuss the issue of anti-Asian hate crimes

Anti-Asian hate crimes are rising across the United States since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. To discuss the issue further, Rohit Gandhi of Democracy News Live discusses the issue with Eileen Cabiling (Filmmaker, United States of America), Alan Ma (Associate Consultant) and, Jenny Kubo (United States of America).

Direk Eileen discussed the various challenges hurdled by Asian Americans across history, since the 1860s.  She noted that Filipinos for example, have always been considered second-class citizens and suffered from racism, along with their Asian counterparts.  She likewise pointed out that these were exacerbated recently by the past administration.

The interview was streamed last March 24, 2021.

Watch the full interview here. 

Get the latest updates about Basurero by liking and following @basurerofilm on Facebook and Instagram.


Rise & Shine with FilAm Creative puts the spotlight on Direk Eileen Cabiling

Women’s History Month celebration continues as Rise & Shine celebrates 10 episodes of award-winning social impact filmmaker EILEEN CABILING, who chats with Ed & Rex about her film BASURERO, an international hit at film festivals worldwide!

Inspired by an Al Jazeera report, Basurero documents the story of a Filipino fisherman (Jericho Rosales) who dumps bodies into the ocean for vigilantes during the current drug war. Eileen compares her cathartic experience filming in the Philippines to her work on independent and studio films in America. Plus, don’t miss her great answers for Rise & Shine’s 13 Things!

Rise & Shine w/FilAm Creative spotlights the many artists, entertainers, and influential creative minds in the Filipino & Asian American communities. Rise & Shine is hosted by Ed Mallillin & Rex Sampaga, with co-hosts Roni Canieso & Kayemee, and featuring Jeremiah Castro and Veronica. Rise & Shine is produced by FilAm Creative, in association with RAS Music Group and Malinius, LLC.

Catch new episodes every Tuesday on YouTube and wherever you download your favorite podcasts. FilAm Creative, Inc. educates and advocates for the Filipino-American entertainment community and all looking for a collaborative workspace in order to achieve greater representation and career advancement.

Watch the interview here.

Follow & Subscribe to Rise & Shine!





Get updates about Basurero through Facebook and Instagram @basurerofilm.

NYFA puts the spotlight on Direk Eileen Cabiling in The 20/20 series

Liz Henlein, Creative Director of Filmmaking and Cinematography at the New York Film Academy (NYFA),  interviewed Direk Eileen Cabiling last January 13, 2021, for NYFA’s The 20/20 Series.  They were joined by NYFA faculty, staff, and students, as well as special guests from all over the globe.

Hinlein created the virtual pop-up event, to allow us to have intimate conversations with creative visionaries, and talk about their craft and artistry.

NYFA thanked Direk Eileen for discussing Basurero with their global community, and for sharing what it means to be an activist filmmaker.

Read the full article here.

Watch the interview here.