Renowned Filipino-Canadian film critic Alexis Tioseco and his partner, Slovenian critic and programmer Nika Bohinc, were shot dead during a robbery at their home in Quezon City on Tuesday night.

According to local news reports, a household helper allowed three gunmen to enter the house who later shot the couple when they returned home and interrupted the robbery.

The Asian film community is shocked and saddened by the news. Tioseco was a highly-regarded writer, lecturer and critic who had helped introduce the Philippines’ rising wave of independent filmmakers to local and overseas audiences.

He was also a champion of South-East Asian cinema and editor of, which features in-depth criticism of South-East Asian films and interviews with local directors. He wrote for a wide range of other publications, including leading local newspapers the Philippine Daily Inquirer and Philippine Star, and also served as a NETPAC and FIPRESCI jury member at several festivals.

Bohinc was also a highly-respected film journalist and programmer for festivals including the Ljubljana International Film Festival and Isola Cinema Film Festival. She also served as the president of FIPRESCI Slovenia.

“To the numerous directors and industry people whom he called friends, the loss is staggering,” said Raymond Phathanavirangoon, South-East Asian programmer of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

“Much of the Filipino film community is reeling right now from the news, and alas the direct impact on TIFF itself is that director Raya Martin, one of Alexis’ close friends, will now no longer be able to attend our festival – which I completely understand.”

Phathanavirangoon added that TIFF’s screening of Martin’s Independencia will be dedicated to the couple.

Ed Lejano in Manila contributed to this report