Five Filipino films will be screened at the 29th Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF) in Japan from October 25-November 3, 2016.
DIE BEAUTIFUL. Topbilled by Eat Bulaga Dabarkads Paolo Ballesteros, Die Beautiful directed by Jun Lana is the only Filipino film included in the main competition of TIFF.
The film tells the story of Trisha (Paolo Ballesteros), a transwoman and beauty pageant veteran, whose dying wish is to have a fabulous death. This marks Lana's return to the Tokyo Film Fest after the success of Barber's Tales in 2014 that earned for Eugene Domingo a Best Actress trophy.
I AMERICA. Ivan Andrew Payawal's second feature film and first Cinemalaya entry I America is included in the line-up of the film festival's Asian Future section.
ABS-CBN actress Bela Padilla portrayed the main protagonist named Erica, a Fil-Am living in Olongapo City who is searching for the identity of her biological father. Elizabeth Oropesa played Erica's mother, a role that earned for her the Best Supporting Actress award at the 2016 Cinemalaya Film Festival.
BIRDSHOT. Mikhail Red's second full-length feature Birdshot stars Mary Joy Apostol, Arnold Reyes, Ku Aquino, and John Arcilla. This movie is also included in Tokyo IFF's Asian Future section. Mikhail is the son of Raymond Red, winner of the 2000 Cannes Palme d’Or for Short Film.
Birdshot revolves around a young hunter named Maya who unknowingly shot a rare Philippine Eagle in order to prove herself to her father Diego. Authorities later found out about the missing national bird and two cops were reassigned to start a manhunt for the poacher. Their investigation led them to the discovery of horrifying mystery from their previous case.
HELE SA HIWAGANG HAPIS. Lav Diaz's Hele Sa Hiwagang Hapis (English title: A Lullaby To the Sorrowful Mystery) starring ABS-CBN actors John Lloyd Cruz and Piolo Pascual will be screened in Tokyo Film Fest's World Focus section.
Lav's eight-hour film merging history and fantasy won the Silver Bear Alfred Bauer Prize at the 66th Berlin International Film Festival held in Germany last February.
The film is also included in the lineup of the 21st Busan International Film Festival that will take place from October 6-15 in South Korea.
SHINIUMA (DEAD HORSE). 2009 Cannes Film Festival Best Director Brillante Mendoza also has an entry at the Tokyo IFF titled Shiniuma (Dead Horse) starring Lou Veloso.
This is part of the festival's omnibus film titled Asian Three-Fold Mirror 2016: Reflections along with two critically-acclaimed Asian directors Isao Yukisada (Japan) and Sotho Kulikar (Cambodia).