The Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) has launched the second installment of the Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino, a week-long event where only Filipino films will be screened all over the country. To be held from August 15 to 21, it will also feature fora and conferences that aim to educate Filipino film professionals.
This year, only eight films will be selected for the event, four movies less than those screened in 2017.
Says FDCP chair Liza Diño-Seguerra, “It was so hard for our audience to watch all those 12 films. I don’t want to create that kind of [situation where] sumali sila pero sila ’yong magiging bottom four. Hindi nila mare-recoup yong investment nila. With the 8 films, we have a good number.”
PPP is looking for world-class movies from different genres, and should be strong enough to get people to wean off from their reliance on video streaming services such as Netflix and HOOQ. “We have to convince the audience to get off from their chairs and [get out of] their homes para manood sa sinehan,” says Liza. “Napaka dami ng platforms [na kalaban]. We have to offer diversity. We have to offer different themes na talagang panonoorin nila. And yes, it includes a lot of genre films, action, horror. Romantic comedies are there, but there are different ways in telling that kind of story. Family films, children’s films.”
No specific criteria were set in choosing the films. However FDCP is looking for content that have universal appeal, making it easier for these movies to be distributed internationally.
“We have to be at par with the best that are out there. For me, this is what PPP is all about. It’s not a festival, and I don’t mean that in negative way. This is an industry event. We are tapping a nationwide audience here and we want to look for films that will cater to the widest audience possible. It’s a long-term vision for us to find films that will resonate not just locally but also globally,” says Liza.
The selection committee will be composed of editor Manet Dayrit, cinematographer Lee Briones, and director Jose Javier Reyes.
“The selection committee, democratic talaga kami. We didn’t set criteria precisely because we just want to watch all films. It’s more a curation [of movies]. Hindi 'yong sine-set mo sya dahil competition. No, it’s an exhibition of films. It’s a platform for our filmmakers to have access to a nationwide audience [without] foreign films,” says Liza.
Profits of the event will be divided among producers and movie theater owners; FDCP will not partake in any of the profits.
Liza reveals, “I think last year P170 million ang na-reach natin [in terms of income]. Siguro we can raise [our target] up ngayon, P200 to P220 million.”
All films can be submitted for consideration, from those produced by major film studios to independent companies. Films will be screened nationwide, except in specialty cinemas such as IMAX, Director’s Club, and Gold Class Screens.
The following awards will be given to deserving entries: Audience Choice Award, Critics’ Choice Award, and Special Jury Prize. No acting prizes will be given.
Also worth watching are the short films that will compete at the Sine Kabataan Awards, a category open to filmmakers from 15 to 30 years old. Entries must depict the following issues:
- Teenage pregnancy
- Mental health
- Adolescent disability
- Out-of-school youth
- Lack of access
Security and peace building
- Youth in conflict with the law
- Youth in conflicted areas
- Youth in peacebuilding
- Digital or online safety
- Violence against children
- Effects of migration
Deadline of entries for PPP’s main film festival is June 15. Meanwhile short films for Sine Kabataan can be submitted until June 18.
For all inquiries about the PPP, call the FDCP at Tel. No. (02) 2569948 local 104 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org. Remember to write “PPP Inquiry” on the email’s subject line.