Isabel Acuña met José Nepomuceno, a Filipino film pioneer, while he was shooting his third film, Un Capello Marchito/The Wilted Rosebud (1920), in Manila in 1920. She was sixteen years old, and her younger sister, Luisa Acuña, was starring in the film. Nepomuceno founded Malayan Movies together with his brother, Jesús, in Manila in 1917, after previously having run a successful photography studio there. Two years later they made the earliest known fiction film directed by a Filipino, Dalagang Bukid/Country Maiden (1919) (Tofighian 2008, 78).
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