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Celso Ad Castillo began directing films mid-60's at an early age, but he has since then gained reputation for many other aspects of the craft particularly scriptwriting and acting. In the Filipino movie industry, he holds the unique repuation of being controversial, trendsetter,enfant terrible and messiah of Philippine cinema, and his track record justifies it: he introduced artistry and commercialism in sex films (nympha) when the two were considered incompatible, and introduced sex in artistic projects ( Ang Pinakamagandang Hayop sa Balat ng Lupa/The Most Beautiful Animal on Earth)when moralistic repression was in vogue. An unfortunate and unfair consequence of the controversy is the recognition due him as one of the finest film commentators on the Philippine social scene, with a visual fluency unmatched by any other contemporary filipino film director.

A list of his outstanding outputs (He made more than fifty films to date) would easily find its way under the heading of indispensable introduction to artistic achievements in Philippine cinema: Asedillo, Burlesk Queen, Pagputi ng Uwak, Pagitim ng Tagak (When The Heron Has Turned Black, When The Crow Has Turned White), Totoy Boogie, Pedro Tunasan, Daluyong at Habagat, Julian Makabayan, Patayin Mo Sa Sindak Si Barbara ( Kill Barbara with Panic), Ang Mahiwagang Daigdig ni Pedro Penduko ( The Mystical World of Pedro Penduko), Ang Daigdig ay Isang Butil na Luha ( The World is just but a Drop of Tear). For some of these, Castillo has been rewarded with trophies for excellence: as director of Burlesk Queen (Metro Manila Fim Festival), Pagputi ng Uwak, Pagitim ng Tagak (Urian and Famas Awards) and Paradise Inn (Famas), all of which won best picture in their respective competitions; as co-writer of Pagputi ng Uwak and Paradise Inn and as writer of still another entry Kung Bakit Dugo ang Kulay ng Gabi (Olongapo Film Festival).

Performers have also been known to attain award winning peaks in Castillo films: Susan Roces and Rosanna Ortiz in Patayin sa Sindak si Barbara, Fernando Poe Jr. in Asidillo, Vilma Santos in Burlesk Queen, Joonee Gamboa and Angie Ferro in Pagputi ng Uwak, Lolita Rodriguez, Vivian Velez, Michael de Mesa, Lito Anzures in Paradise Inn. Castillo himself has been rewarded a best supporting actor award in Sampung Ahas ni Eba (Ten Snakes Of Eve).

His latest film Isang Dalaga sa Panahon ng Trahedya ( A Woman in the Days Of Tragedy) which Castillo considers a New Wave genre may well prove to be another landmark in his colorful body of work serving to announce that hopefully the international audience will take notice of his third world approach in the art of cinema.