On the idyllic island of Palawan, ecological crusaders battle the development of a tropical paradise-turned-tourist hotspot.

The family of a murdered environmental crusader mourn his brutal death at his funeral.  (credit: Thoughtful Robot Productions)
Premiere Date
September 26, 2022
90 minutes
Funding Initiative
Open Call
  • Nominated laurels-r Created with Sketch.
    2023 News and Documentary Emmy Awards-Outstanding Investigative Documentary
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    Karl Malakunas

    Karl Malakunas is an Australian filmmaker based in Hong Kong. He is the Asia-Pacific Deputy Editor-In-Chief for the news agency Agence France-Presse. Paradise is Karl’s first feature film. He made an initial short film and essay on Palawan's land defenders. Karl is a 2019 Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program Grantee.

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    Marty Syjuco

    From the Philippines, Marty Syjuco is an Emmy®-Award nominated filmmaker whose first film, Give Up Tomorrow, won the Audience Award and Special Jury Prize at the Tribeca Film Festival. His second feature, Almost Sunrise, won a CINE Golden Eagle Award. His latest film, Call Her Ganda, was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award. 

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    Michael Collins

    Michael Collins is an Emmy Award-nominated filmmaker whose documentary, Almost Sunrise, premiered at Telluride Mountainfilm and won six major awards. Michael’s first film, Give Up Tomorrow, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and won the Audience Award, a Special Jury Prize for Best New Director, and was nominated for an Emmy.

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    The Film

    The idyllic island of Palawan epitomizes the postcard image of a tropical paradise with its white sand beaches and lush tropical forests. But the Philippines’ last ecological frontier land faces an uncertain future as environmental crusaders try to fend off an up-and-coming tourist hotspot and a network of ecological vigilantes scramble to protect the island’s natural resources. Charismatic leaders confront threats, betrayal, and their own demons in an uphill battle to stop politicians and businessmen from carving up the beauty of Palawan. Mirroring conflicts around the globe between developers and land defenders, Delikado tells a story both personal and universal.