- Was the founder and president of the Marilou Díaz-Abaya Film Institute and Arts Center, a film school based in Antipolo City.
- Directed Jose Rizal (1998), based on the life of Filipino nationalist José Rizal, which won the maximum number of awards (17) at the Metro Manila film Festival.
- Was a film instructor at the Ateneo de Manila University, Quezon City.
- Was director of the Film Development Council of the Philippines.
- In 2001, was awarded the Arts and Culture Prize of the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prize.