Arts & Entertainment

Deco Isn't Dead: This Theater is Bringing Back Art Deco to Celebrate 100 Years of Philippine Cinema

New Frontier Theater is going to be transformed into an old school art deco cinema for this year’s Sine Sandaan.
IMAGE Film Development Council of the Philippines

This year marks 100 years of Philippine Cinema, and Sine Sandaan, an annual film celebration, is paying homage to the golden age of Philippine films by transforming New Frontier Theater into an old school art deco cinema. Some might argue that deco is dead, but Sine Sandaan is proving otherwise.

Back in the day, specifically in the ‘30s and ‘50s, art deco buildings dotted the city before they fell out of trend. But the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) is bringing back the iconic pre- and post-war design style as the backdrop for Sine Sandaan 2019 on September 12, 2019.

New Frontier Theater was once the biggest cinema in Asia when it was built in 1965. It still remains a classic cultural landmark in the Quezon City arts scene. Twenty years after the theater was opened, it fell into disuse in the ‘80s—a shame for a cultural local landmark. It was eventually renovated and reopened in 2015, outfitted with the latest entertainment technology.


Sine Sandaan will gather 300 “luminaries” made up of the greatest film industry professionals across the board. Active, retired, legend, or newbie—Sine Sandaan’s luminaries will get to behold the theater’s take on art deco aesthetics, transporting them back to the golden age of Philippine cinema. 

The event will take place a day before FDCP launched Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino (PPP), a week-long film event that will screen a series of local films nationwide from September 13 to 19. This year’s much anticipated lineup includes: Circa by Adolfo Borinaga Alix Jr., Cuddle Weather by Rod Marmol, G! Tropa by Dondon Santos, I’m Ellenya L. by Boy 2 Quizon, Lola Igna by Eduardo Roy Jr., LSS by Jade Castro, Open by Andoy Ranay, Pagbalik by Hubert Tibi and Maria Ranillo, Panti Sisters by Jun Lana, and Watch Me Kill by T.A. Acierto. 

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Anri Ichimura
Section Editor, Esquire Philippines
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