Movies & TV

Eight Filipino Films Join the Prestigious Tokyo International Film Festival

Mañanita, Motel Acacia, and more will participate at the 32nd edition of the festival.
IMAGE FILM DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL OF THE PHILIPPINES
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As local filmmakers continue to make great strides, more and more Filipino films are being recognized around the world.

On October 28, eight Filipino films will be featured at the Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF). Paul Soriano's Mañanita and Bradley Liew's Motel Acacia will be included in the Competition and Asian Future Sections respectively.

Mindanao by Brillante Mendoza, Island of Dreams by Erik Matti, Kuwaresma also by Matti, and Ang Hupa by Lav Diaz, Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay by Antoinette Jadaone, Untrue by Sigrid Andrea P. Bernardo will also be in the festival's line-up.

"It has been a fruitful year for Philippine cinema, especially now that we are celebrating its hundred years. FDCP takes pride that our films consistently make a mark in world cinema, especially in the prestigious Tokyo International Film Festival," said FDPC chairperson and CEO Mary Liza Diño.

Filipinos who will attend the festival include Mañanita’s director Soriano and actress Bela Padilla; Motel Acacia’s director Liew, actors JC Santos, Bianca Balbuena, Ben Padero, Carlo Tabije, Ben Tolentino, April Batican, and Kriz Gazmen, and executive producer Quark Henares; Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay’s director Antoinette Jadaone; and Untrue’s director Sigrid Andrea P. Bernardo.

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Judy Ann Santos in Mindanao
Photo by FILM DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL OF THE PHILIPPINES.

Competition is the TIFF's principal section and main highlight. It showcases 14 feature films selected from 1,804 titles from 115 countries and regions. During the ceremony, the jury will award the Tokyo Grand Prix, Special Jury Prize, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Actor, Best Artistic Contribution, and Best Screenplay Award.

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The International Competition Jury members include Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi, American producer Bill Gerber, French actress and producer Juliet Gayet, Danish director Michael Noer, and Japanese director Ryuichi Hiroki.

Island of Dreams
Photo by FILM DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL OF THE PHILIPPINES.

"There are three key words this year: challenging, inspiring, and entertaining. We believe all 14 of the films, almost all either debut films or second features, will be stimulating to audiences in these three ways," said Competition programming director Yoshi Yatabe.

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Kuwaresma
Photo by FILM DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL OF THE PHILIPPINES.

Asian Future, on the other hand, is the section for films by emerging directors. Best Asian Future Film Award and The Spirit of Asia Award by the Japan Foundation Asia Center will be awarded to the winners.

Ang Hupa
Photo by FILM DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL OF THE PHILIPPINES.
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"We have eight films in the Asian Future section this year, all by promising young Asian directors. Six of them are world premieres, and the other two are international premieres. I didn’t intentionally do this, but there are multiple works from several countries," said Asian Future programming director Kenji Ishizaka.

Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay
Photo by FILM DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL OF THE PHILIPPINES.
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"There seems to be a polarization happening in Asia, with big commercial films and smaller, fresher films like these. In these films, you will see the reality of the lives of people in the countries represented, a reality that you can’t see on the news, and we hope to continue supporting these types of work," he adds.

Untrue
Photo by FILM DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL OF THE PHILIPPINES.
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The 32nd TIFF will take place from October 28 to November 5, 2019 at Roppongi Hills, EX Theater Roppongi, Hibiya Step Square, and other venues in Tokyo. The nine-day celebration will have screenings of over 170 films, as well as film-related events, including stage appearances, symposia, and more.

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