Everyone got surprised with the result of the Magic 8 of the 2016 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF).
Controversy arose with how the mainstream films – that many expected to be part of the prestigious line up – were eliminated from the roster and on how independent films finally took the spot light.
“Change will offer discomfort, and sometimes even pain,” Boots Anson Roa, member of MMFF’s executive committee (execomm) said in a press conference held at Kamuning Bakery Cafe amidst the news that shocked everybody. “And the only permanent thing is change.”
Among the qualifiers to this year’s MMFF are:
- “Die Beautiful” – directed by Jun Robles Lana; starring Paolo Ballesteros
- “Kabisera” directed by Arturo San Agustin and Real Florido; starring Nora Aunor and Ricky Davao
- “Saving Sally” directed by Avid Liongoren; starring Rhian Ramos
- “Seklusyon” directed by Erik Matti
- “Sunday Beauty Queen” directed by Baby Ruth Villarama
- “Vince & Kath & James” (Star Cinema) directed by Ted Boborol; starring Julia Barretto, Joshua Garcia and Ronnie Alonte
- “Ang Babae sa Septic Tank 2: Forever is Not Enough” directed by Marlon Rivera; starring Eugene Domingo, and
- “Oro” directed by Alvin Yapan; starring Joem Bascon
Moira Lang, another member of the execomm, clarified that none of his co-members in the committee were involved “in any capacity” with any films that was chosen. That is why it is hardly impossible if an entry was picked out of anomaly but instead of, qualifies as the new standard requires.
Anson-Roa added that this change has resulted from what had happened last year.
It was remembered that an entry was disqualified for one of the major awards. Some directors also raised complaint from unfair choice of entries to unjust treatment of cinema houses to small producers.
She is glad that she became part of the renaissance of the glorious festival. It is in this cause that she is encouraging everyone to support all chosen films.
Among the greatest shift that has been imposed is the blurring of the demarcation line between mainstream and independent pictures. She further justified that the dividing concept may soon be erased.
Despite the fear that film-goers might shrink and some films might garner fewer ticket sales, MMFF guarantees omnibus advertisement and equal screening on the first two days of the festival for all the entries.
They are hoping that by word of mouth, people will be drawn to the cinema and will keep the festival alive until the tenth day.
“If you want change, be part of it,” she further noted. (Ace Palaganas)