"Walang foreign films in all cinemas nationwide from August 16-22," declared Liza Dino, chairperson of the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP).
For one whole week, around 790 cinemas all over the Philippines will be screening Filipino films exclusively in the FDCP event called Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino.
The festival will showcase 12 Pinoy movies to celebrate Buwan ng Wika.
In a recent Facebook post, Liza Dino explained that this event is part of a proposal that she submitted to President Rodrigo Duterte:
"Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino was born out of an executive order proposal we submitted to the Office of the President to create a National Film Month----yes, a month-long celebration of PHILIPPINE CINEMA. In lieu of Buwan ng Wika, we wanted to encourage our country to use cinema as a medium to celebrate our culture, our stories and everything that makes us Filipino.
"PPP is a pilot project supporting this proposal---a nationwide week-long celebration timed exactly during Linggo ng Wika, where Filipino films will have an exclusive platform to be screened in ALL CINEMAS nationwide. It almost seemed impossible to get everyone's support in this but we found ways--- we partnered with theaters and government agencies uniting in the commonality that we are here together as stakeholders to promote good quality films. The intention is PURE----to give ANOTHER exclusive platform to our local audience na walang kalabang foreign films."
The FDCP Chairperson also revealed that there are plans to hold the PPP three times a year.
"Marami sa pelikula natin ngayon ang hindi kumikita pag nahahalo sa malalaking hollywood films. Karamahihan, lalo kung galing sa indpendent production, natatabunan especially pag hindi namamarket ng maayos ang pelikula. Nalulunod sila against these hollywood films during regular playdates. FDCP hopes to resolve that issue by clustering our films together para maencourage ang audience na manood.
"Actually, if this becomes successful, the bigger vision is to have these platforms three times a year--- April, August at December. I haven't discussed this with partners but I believe that our stakeholders are open to try anything that would help our local cinema."
Diring the media launch of PPP, Liza Dino was asked if it's true that the Nora Aunor entry Tuos was supposed to be part of this festival.
The FDCP chairperson confirmed this by saying, "They were chosen by the committee. Unfortunately, nag-withdraw sila ng kanilang participation dito sa Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino.
Why was Tuos withdrawn from the film fest?
"Kasi ang isa sa mga challenges ngayon...
"Nagkaroon kami ng meeting to explain to them the mechanics ng Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino na may 790 screens nationwide.
"Isa sa mga kailangan iprepare ng mga producer ay makapagpagawa ng mga copies para sa cinemas. Kailangan ng distributor," explained Liza Dino.
The prohibitive cost of producing the Digital Cinema Package (DCP) needed for the simultaneous screenings prevented the Nora Aunor entry Tuos from being screened in the Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino.
The films were chosen by committee members Manet Dayrit, Oggs Cruz, Ricky Lee, Erik Matti, Jose Javier Reyes, Iza Calzado, and Lee Briones.
There are plans to hold a motorcade on August 13 as well as an outdoor fiesta themed event in Luneta.
The gala opening premiere night will take place on August 15 where the FDCP will screen the movie Zamboanga to celebrate 100 years of Philippine cinema. Zamboanga is a 1937 film starring Fernando Poe Sr.
The thanksgiving and awards night is scheduled to take place on August 19 to coincide with Araw ni Manuel Quezon. The FDCP will award a Critics Choice Award and Audience Choice Award for select films.
Here are the 12 movies in the 2017 Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino:
100 TULA PARA KAY STELLA
Fidel and his crushie Stella go through college together and we watch as he struggles to confess his feelings for her.
Director: Jason Paul Laxamana
Cast: Bela Padilla, JC Santos
ANG MANANANGGAL SA UNIT 23B
A re-edited version featuring additional scenes of Ang Manananggal Sa Unit 23B will be shown in PPP, according to the lead actress. This film is a love story... but with a creature from Philippine folklore. Ryza Cenon plays the titular character who has to keep her emotions and hunger in check or risk transforming into a winged creature.
Director: Prime Cruz
Cast: Ryza Cenon, Martin del Rosario, Vangie Labalan
Lt. Abel Ibarra goes after the man who tried to kill him and his family. In his Instagram account, Gerald posted that his character Lt.Abel Ibarra is the leader of the sniper team (Musang) of the Philippine Army Scout Rangers. He also posted the warrior ethos: "I will always place the mission first. I will never accept defeat. I will never quit. I will never leave a fallen comrade."
Director: Enzo Williams
Cast: Gerald Anderson
Rocco Nacino, Enzo Pineda, Carlo Aquino and Kean Cipriano star as four law students and the sacrifices they make as they inch closer to their dream of passing the bar and becoming lawyers.
Director: Kip Oebanda
Cast: Rocco Nacino, Carlo Aquino, Enzo Pineda, Kean Cipriano
After unintentionally shooting a Philippine Eagle, Maya is forced to flee and hide in a forest — where violence and other threats lurk in the dark.
Director: Mikhail Red
Cast: John Arcilla, Ku Aquino, Arnold Reyes, Mary Joy Apostol
Four kids try to survive the mean streets of Manila. Therese "Teri" Malvar was named Best Actress in the Moscow International Film Festival for her performance as a street urchin in this film.
Director: Ralston Jover
Cast: Zaijian Jaranilla, Teri Malvar, Sam Quintania, Bor Lentejas
An Aeta crosses the river to go to town and find a wife. On the way he meets a woman who grew up in the city and the encounter creates a lasting impact.
Director: Zig Madamba Dulay
Cast: Garry Cabalic, Anna Luna
PATAY NA SI HESUS
Cannes 2016 Best Actress Jaclyn Jose plays mother Iyay, who takes her kids on a road trip, traveling from Cebu to Dumaguete, to attend the funeral of her estranged husband.
Director: Victor Villanueva
Cast: Jaclyn Jose, Melde Montanez, Chai Fonacier
A sickly man, his nagging wife, a blind pregnant woman, and a dog ride a pedicab out of Manila to find greener pastures in the province. Things become even more interesting when the blind woman sees "Jesus Christ" as He accompanies them in their journey. Pauwi Na (Pedicab) was chosen as Best Film at the Shanghai Film Festival.
Director: Paolo Villaluna
Starring: Bembol Roco, Cherry Pie Picache, Meryll Soriano, Jerald Napoles, Chai Fonacier
A news crew reporting on alleged mythical creatures in Mindanao are chased by an armed group into the forest.
Director: Sherad Sanchez
Cast: Jessy Mendiola, JC de Vera, Karl Medina
STAR NA SI VAN DAMME STALLONE
A child with Down Syndrome dreams of being a star, prompting his struggling family to hustle some more and help turn his dreams into a reality.
Director: Randolph Longjas
Cast: Candy Pangilinan, Paolo Pingol, Acey Aguilar
A three-panel film that unearths the mysterious happenings in the lives of a playboy who runs out of luck, a model whose skin-deep curse reaches a boiling point, and a musician chasing after light-footed love.
Director: Miguel Franco Michelena
Starring: Albie Casiño, Joseph Marco, Kean Cipriano, Kylie Padilla