FREE film screenings, networking events, a book launch, and workshops will mark the second Philippine Film Industry Month (PFIM), a month-long celebration of the heritage and legacy of Philippine Cinema. The Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) will be hosting local and international events in September.
With the theme “Tuloy Ang Kuwento: Ang Pagbabalik ng Pelikulang Pilipino (The Story Continues: The Return of Philippine Movies),” the celebration aims to gather the different stakeholders and rally behind the Philippine film industry as it regains its momentum upon the easing of pandemic-related restrictions and as cinemas and theaters become fully operational. Most of the events will be held in-person.
In honor of their significant contribution to the industry, films of National Artists for Film actor-director Fernando Poe, Jr., actress Nora Aunor, screenwriter Ricky Lee, and director Marilou Diaz-Abaya will be screened for free.
PPP will also be returning, featuring the finalists from Sine Kabataan Short Film Lab and Festival and Sine Isla: LuzViMinda Short Film Competition.
Former President Rodrigo Duterte proclaimed September as Philippine Film Industry Month through the Presidential Proclamation 1085, s. 2021.
FPJ FILMS AND KIDLAT TAHIMIK
In line with the celebration of the 83rd birthday of the late actor-director Fernando Poe, Jr. — often referred to as The King of Philippine Movies — the Philippine Film Archive (PFA) will hold free screenings of four of his films from Aug. 31 to Sept. 3 in FDCP Cinematheque Centres nationwide. The films are Ang Padrino, Ang Panday, Pagbabalik ng Lawin, and Asedillo (directed by Celso Ad Castillo).
Meanwhile, the FDCP will hold the “Tuloy Ang Kuwento: PFIM Opening Ceremony” at Cinema 6 of TriNoma Mall in Quezon City, to be hosted by Dianne Medina, with guests Dr. Nicanor Tiongson and Dik Trofeo. Part of the opening includes a special screening of the newly restored film, The Moises Padilla Story by National Artist Gerardo de Leon.
There will also be a Cinema Books Expo featuring books by Ricky Lee, Doy del Mundo, Nick Deocampo, and Nestor Cuartero in cooperation with DLSU Publishing House and UST Publishing House.
On Sept. 7, the FDCP will officially open National Artist Kidlat Tahimik’s exhibit Indio-Genius: 500 Taon Labanan Kontra Magellan, Marilyn, Mickey at Padre Damaso, at the Cinematheque Centre Manila. The exhibit features art installations and a special screening of Mr. Tahimik’s film Balikbayan #1: The Silent Movie.
The exhibit, which was shown for six months in Spain’s Palacio Cristal last year, will be fanned out across six venues: the National Museum of the Philippines, Museo Pambata, the Rizal Park Visitor’s Center, the Intramuros Administration, the headquarters of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, and at the FDCP’s Cinematheque Centre Manila.
PISTA NG PELIKULANG PILIPINO
The FDCP’s flagship film festival, Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino (PPP), officially opens on Sept. 9. Now on its 6th edition, the festival will screen restored films in its PPP Classics section and short films in its Sine Kabataan and Sine Isla: LuzViMinda sections.
The PPP Opening Ceremony will feature free screenings of restored classic films starring Nora Aunor: Atsay, directed by Eddie Garcia, and Tatlong Taong Walang Diyos, by Mario O’Hara, at the TriNoma Cinema in Quezon City.
After the opening ceremony in TriNoma, PPP Classics and Sine Kabataan and Sine Isla: LuzViMinda short films will be screened for free at Cinematheque Centres nationwide from Sept. 10 to 24.
Under PPP Classics, the feature films Atsay and Tatlong Taong Walang Diyos, will be shown on Sept. 10; Cain at Abel and Gumapang Ka Sa Lusak, both written by Ricky Lee, will be shown on Sept. 15; and Brutal and Karnal by the late director Marilou Diaz-Abaya will be shown on Sept. 16. These screenings are supported by Solar Films, ABS-CBN’s Sagip Pelikula, and Viva Films.
PPP Classics’ films will also be screened, together with Sine Kabataan and Sine Isla short films, from Sept. 17 to 24 in all Cinematheques Centers.
Sept. 12 is a significant day for Philippine Cinema — it was the day the first Filipino-produced and directed film, Dalagang Bukid by Jose Nepomuceno, was released in 1919. In line with this, the FDCP will hold the Awit at Pelikula: Philippine Film Industry Month Gala at Teatrino in Promenade, Greenhills in San Juan City.
The gala will feature soundtrack songs from some of the great Filipino classic films, to be performed by some of the country’s top performers like Christopher de Leon, Anna Feleo, Jed Madela, and Bituin Escalante. There will also be a tribute to the actress Cherie Gil who passed away on Aug. 5. The event will be hosted by actor-singer Piolo Pascual.
The Gala will also feature a new original composition by National Artist of the Philippines for Music Ryan Cayabyab, and written by Jose Javier Reyes.
SINE KABATAAN AND SINE ISLA: LUZVIMINDA
On Sept. 16, PPP 6 will premiere the 10 short films from Sine Kabataan and the 10 short films from Sine Isla: LuzViMinda, to be followed by the Awards Night, and a special screening Martika Escobar’s Leonor Will Never Die at the TriNoma Cinema in Quezon City.
On Sept. 17 to 18, free screenings of the in-competition short films will be held, with a talkback session with the Sine Kabataan and Sine Isla filmmakers at TriNoma. The Sept. 18 schedule will include a free screening of the feature film John Denver Trending by Arden Rod Condez.
BOOK LAUNCH, QUIZ NIGHT
FDCP, in partnership with the South East Asia Pacific Audio-visual Archive Association (SEAPAVAA), will hold a book launch and a film archiving forum on Sept. 21 at the Cinematheque Centre Manila. The book Keeping Memories: Cinema and Archiving in the Asia-Pacific, edited by filmmaker and historian Nick Deocampo, is a joint publication of SEAPAVAA, FDCP, Ateneo Press, and the Vietnam Film Institute.
Meanwhile, on Sept. 24, the FDCP Channel will host the FDCP Channel Anibersaya Game Night, an online game night which the public can join and win prizes. This will be streamed live from 7 to 8 p.m. via FDCP Channel, and FDCP’s official Facebook and YouTube pages.
UFLIX RELAUNCH, WEBINAR
The FDCP will be relaunching UFlix — an exhibition platform for student filmmakers — on Sept. 24 by announcing an upcoming incentive program for student filmmakers. The UFlix inauguration will hold screenings for student films for the day at Cinematheque Centers nationwide.
To raise awareness about the film incentives and funding programs that filmmakers can apply for, on Sept. 28 the FDCP Film Philippines Office (FPO) will hold a Webinar In Film Incentives (WIFI) to discuss its Film Location Incentive Program (FLIP), International Co-Production Fund (ICOF), ASEAN Co-production Fund (ACOF), Film Location Engagement Desk (FLEX), and CreatePHFilm Funds for Development (Script Development and Project Development), Production (Small Budget and Large Budget), and Post-Production. FPO will also announce the opening of their new cycle for their incentive and funding programs.
Capping off the month-long festivities on Sept. 20 is the Filmmakers and Shakers Night: Closing Event of the Philippine Film Industry Month program, which will be hosted by Robi Domingo and feature tributes to the “Queen of Visayan Movies” Gloria Sevilla and “Queen of Philippine Movies” Susan Roces. The closing event also serves as an opportunity to honor and thank all the partners, stakeholders, and filmmakers who supported the Philippine film industry.
Beyond film month, the FDCP will hold the International Film Industry Conference (IFIC), an annual conference that brings together experts from the local and international film industries as panelists and speakers in a series of sessions and masterclasses. The hybrid conference will be held in October.
PHILIPPINE FILMS IN ITALY
Philippine films will also be celebrated in Italy in September.
To mark the 75th anniversary of the formal establishment of diplomatic relations between the Philippines in Italy, the Philippine Embassy in Rome and Sentro Rizal Rome, in partnership with the FDCP, will hold the third edition of the Festival del Cinema Filipino in Italia (Philippine Film Festival in Italy) on Sept. 10 and 11. Meant to promote Philippine culture, tourism, cinema, and creative industries in Italy, the festival carries the theme “Philippines-Italy: Rising Together.”
The Philippines will also be present on one of the most film festivals in the world, the Venice International Film Festival (VIFF). The country will present two Filipino co-produced films and one Out of Competition film. There will also be one FDCP-led panel discussion at the Venice Production Bridge, the networking side of the festival.
Autobiography by Makbul Mubarak – a co-production between Indonesia, France, Germany, Poland, Singapore, Qatar, and the Philippines which is an FDCP FPO ASEAN Co-production Fund grantee — will compete in the Orizzonti section of the Venice Film Festival. Meanwhile, the Romanian film To The North by Mihai Mincan, which stars Filipino actors Soliman Cruz and Bart Guingona, will also compete in the same section.
Filipino auteur Lav Diaz’s film, Kapag Wala Nang Mga Alon (When the Waves are Gone), an International Co-production Fund grantee of the FPO, will have its world premiere under the Out of Competition section of the festival.
The FDCP will host the panel discussion “Fostering Creative Collaborations — Common Strategies and Opportunities” at the Venice Production Bridge, in collaboration with Directorate General for Cinema and Audiovisual – Ministry of Culture of Italy, Philippine Embassy in Rome, and FDCP’s UniPhilippines Office.