Cinema of the Philippines


Cinema of the Philippines

Cinema of the Philippines started with the introduction of the first moving pictures to the country on January 1, 1897 at the Salón de Pertierra in Manila. The following year, local scenes were shot on film for the first time by a Spaniard, Antonio Ramos, using the Lumiere Cinematograph. Early filmmakers and producers in the country were mostly wealthy enterprising foreigners and expatriates, but on September 12, 1919, a silent feature film broke the grounds for Filipino filmmakers. Dalagang Bukid (Country Maiden), a movie based on a popular musical play, was the first movie made and shown by Filipino filmmaker José Nepomuceno.[1] Dubbed as the "Father of Philippine Cinema", his work marked the start of cinema as an art form in the Philippines.[2]

Even with the problems currently facing motion pictures around the world, movies are still considered as one of the popular forms of entertainment among the Filipinos, directly employing some 260 000 Filipinos and generating around PHP 1500 million revenues annually.[3]

The Philippines was the last country to establish a national film archive, when one opened in October 2011.[4]

Contents

Overview

The formative years of Philippine cinema, starting from the 1930s, were a time of discovering the film genre as a new medium of art. Scripts and characterisations in films came from popular theatre and familiar local literature. Nationalistic films were also quite popular, although they were labeled as being too subversive

The 1940s and the war brought to the Philippine cinema the consciousness of reality. Movie themes consisting primarily of war and heroism had proven to be a huge hit among local audience.

The 1950s saw the first golden age of Philippine cinema,[5][6] with the emergence of more artistic and mature films, and significant improvement in cinematic techniques among filmmakers. The studio system produced frenetic activity in the local film industry as many films were made annually and several local talents started to earn recognition abroad. Award-giving bodies were first instituted during this period. When the decade was drawing to a close, the studio system monopoly came under siege as a result of labor-management conflicts, and by the 1960s, the artistry established in the previous years was already on a decline. This era can be characterized by rampant commercialism, fan movies, soft porn films, action flicks, and western spin-offs.

The 1970s and 1980s were considered as turbulent years of the industry, bringing both positive and negative changes. The films in this period now dealt with more serious topics following the Martial Law era. In addition, action and sex films developed further introducing more explicit pictures. These years also brought the arrival of alternative or independent film in the Philippines.

The 1990s saw the emerging popularity of massacre movies, teen-oriented romantic comedies, as well as anatomy-baring adult films, although slapsticks still draw a large audience. Genres of previous decades had been recycled with almost the same stories, and love teams, which had been popular in the past, had become reincarnated.[6]

The Philippines, being one of Asia's earliest film industry, remains undisputed in terms of the highest level of theater admission in Southeast Asia. Over the years, however, the film industry has registered a steady decline in the movie viewership from 131 million in 1996 to 63 million in 2004.[7][8] From a high of 200 films a year during the 1980s, the country's film industry was down to making a total of new 56 films in 2006 and around 30 in 2007.[7][8] Although the industry has undergone turbulent times, the 21st century saw the rebirth of independent filmmaking through the use of digital technology, and a number of films have once again earned international recognition and prestige.

History

Origins

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On 1 January 1897, the first four movies namely, Un Homme Au Chapeau (Man with a Hat), Une scène de danse japonnaise (Scene from a Japanese Dance), Les Boxers (The Boxers), and La Place de L' Opéra (The Place L' Opéra), were shown via 60 mm Gaumont Chrono-photograph projector at the Salon de Pertierra at No.12 Escolta in Manila. The venue was formerly known as the Phonograph Parlor on the ground floor of the Casino Español at Pérez Street, off Escolta Street. Other countries, such as France, England, and Germany had their claims to the introduction of publicly projected motion picture in the Philippines, although Petierra was given the credit to this by most historians and critics.[9]

Antonio Ramos, a Spanish soldier from Aragón, was able to import a Lumiere Cinematograph from Paris, including 30 film titles, out of his savings and the financial banking of two Swiss entrepreneurs Liebman and Peritz.

By August 1897, Liebman and Peritz presented the first movies on the Lumiere Cinematograph in Manila. The cinema was set up at Escolta Street at the corner of San Jacinto Street. A test preview was presented to a limited number of guests on 28 August and the inaugural show was presented to the general public the next day, August 29, 1897.[9] Documentary films showing recent events as well as natural calamities in Europe were shown in Manila.[6]

During the first three weeks, Ramos had a selection of ten different films to show, but by the fourth week, he was forced to shuffle the 30 films in various combinations to produce new programs. These were four viewing sessions, every hour on the hour, from 6:00 P.M. to 10:00 P.M. After three months, attendance began to slacken for failure to show any new feature. They transferred the viewing hall to a warehouse in Plaza Goiti and reduced the admission fees. By the end of November, the movie hall closed down.[9]

The next year, to attract patronage, using the Lumiere as a camera, Ramos locally filmed Panorama de Manila (Manila landscape), Fiesta de Quiapo (Quiapo Fiesta), Puente de España (Bridge of Spain), and Escenas Callejeras (Street scenes), making him the first movie producer in the Philippines. Aside from Ramos, there were other foreigners who left documentary evidences of their visits to the Philippines. Burton Holmes, father of the Travelogue, who made the first of several visits in 1899, made the Battle of Baliwag; Kimwood Peters shot the Banawe Rice Terraces; and, Raymond Ackerman of American Biography and Mutoscope filmed Filipino Cockfight and the Battle of Mt. Arayat.[9]

Early American period

Film showing in the Philippines resumed in 1900 when a British entrepreneur named Walgrah opened the Cine Walgrah at No.60 Calle Santa Rosa in Intramuros. The second movie house was opened in 1902 by a Spanish entrepreneur, Samuel Rebarber, who called his building, Gran Cinematógrafo Parisino, located at No. 80 Calle Crespo in Quiapo. In 1903, José Jiménez, a stage backdrop painter, set up the first Filipino-owned movie theater, the Cinematograpo Rizal in Azcarraga Street (now C.M. Recto Ave.), in front of the Tutuban Railway Station.[9] In the same year, a movie market was formally created in the country along with the arrival of silent movies and American colonialism.[6] The silent films were always accompanied by gramophone, a piano, or a quartet, or when Caviria was shown at the Manila Grand Opera House, a 200-man choir.[9]

In 1905, Herbert Wyndham, shot scenes at the Manila Fire Department; Albert Yearsly shot the Rizal Day Celebration in Luneta 1909; in 1910, the Manila Carnival; in 1911, the Eruption of Mayon Volcano; the first Airplane Flight Over Manila by Bud Mars and the Fires of Tondo, Pandacan and Paco; and, in 1912, the Departure of the Igorots to Barcelona and the Typhoon in Cebu.[9] These novelty films, however, did not capture the hearts of the audience because they were about the foreigners.[6]

The Philippine Commission recognized early the potential of cinema as a tool of communication and information, so that in 1909, the Bureau of Science bought a complete filmmaking unit and laboratory from Pathé, and sent its chief photographer, the American, Charles Martin[disambiguation needed ], to France to train for a year. When Martin completed his training, he resolved to document, in motion pictures, the varied aspects of the Philippines.

In 1910, the first picture with sound reached Manila, using the Chronophone. A British film crew also visited the Philippines, and filmed, among other scenes, the Pagsanjan Falls (Oriental) in 1911 in kinemacolor.[9] In 1912, New York and Hollywood film companies started to establish their own agencies in Manila to distribute films.[9] In the same year, two American entrepreneurs made a film about the execution of Jose Rizal, and aroused a strong curiosity among Filipino moviegoers. This led to the making of the first Filipino film.[6]

By 1914, the US colonial government was already using films as a vehicle for information, education, propaganda and entertainment. The Bureau of Science tackled subjects designed to present an accurate picture of the Philippines before the American public, particularly the US Congress. By 1915, the best European and American films were shown in Philippine theaters. When World War I (1914–1918) choked off the production of European studios, Manila theater managers turned to US for new film products. With the variety they offered, American films quickly dominated the Philippine film market.[9]

First Filipino filmmakers

The first film produced by a Filipino is José Nepomuceno's Dalagang Bukid (Country Maiden) in 1919 based on a highly-acclaimed musical play by Hermogenes Ilagan and León Ignacio.[6] Early filmmakers, even with meager capital, followed some of the genres provided by Hollywood movies. The main sources of movie themes during this period were theater pieces from popular dramas or zarzuelas. Another source of movie themes at that time was Philippine literature.

In 1929, the Syncopation, the first American sound film, was shown in Radio theater in Plaza Santa Cruz in Manila inciting a competition on who could make the first talkie among local producers. On December 8, 1932, a film in Tagalog entitled Ang Aswang (The Aswang), a monster movie inspired by Philippine folklore, was promoted as the first sound film. Moviegoers who remembered the film attested that it was not a completely sound film.[9] José Nepomuceno's Punyal na Guinto (Golden Dagger), which premiered on March 9, 1933, at the Lyric theater, was credited as the first completely sound, all-talking picture in the country.[9]

In the 1930s, a few film artists and producers deviated from the norms and presented sociopolitical movies. Ironically, the people who helped the film industry develop and flourish were also the same people who suppressed its artistic expression by inhibiting movie themes that would establish radical political views among the Filipinos. Instead, love and reconciliation between members of different classes of people were encouraged as themes.[6]Julian Manansala’s film Patria Amor (Beloved Country) was almost suppressed because of its anti-Spanish sentiments.

Carmen Concha, the first female director in the country, also ventured into filmmaking, and she directed Magkaisang Landas and Yaman ng Mahirap in 1939 under Parlatone, and Pangarap in 1940 under LVN.[10]

Despite fierce competition with Hollywood movies, the Filipino film industry survived and flourished. When the 1930s drew to a close, the Filipino film industry was well established, and local movie stars acquired huge followers.

Some popular movie stars of the pre-WWII era include:

  • Brian Soria
  • Fernando Royo
  • Ben Rubio
  • Rolando Liwanag
  • Exequiel Segovia
  • Ben Pérez
  • Teddy Benavides
  • Manuel Barbeyto
  • Ernesto la Guardia
  • Jaime G. Castellvi

World War II and Japanese occupation

During the Japanese Occupation, filmmaking was suddenly put to a halt. The Japanese brought with them their own films, but this was not appealing to the local audience. Japanese propaganda offices began hiring several local filmmakers, including Gerardo de Leon, to make propaganda pictures that extol Filipino-Japanese friendship. One of these propaganda films was the Dawn of Freedom, which was directed by Abe Yutaka and Gerardo de León.[6] At the same time, the comedy duo Pugo and Togo, popular for satirizing Japanese occupation in the Philippines,[11] was renamed to Tuguing and Puguing because of Togo name's closeness to Tojo, the name of the Prime Minister of Japan during the early 1940s.

During World War II, almost all actors depended only on stage shows on most major Manila movie theaters as livelihood. As a consequence, live theater began to thrive again as movie stars, directors and technicians returned to the stage.

1950s

Bundles of 35-mm films of several old movies being kept by the Mowelfund at the Movie Museum of the Philippines in Quezon City.

After World War II, the Philippine version of a war film emerged as a genre. The audience were hungry for films with patriotic themes. Films such as Garrison 13 (1946), Dugo ng Bayan (The Country’s Blood) (1946), Walang Kamatayan (Deathless) (1946), and Guerilyera (1946), narrated the horrors of the war and the heroism of the soldiers and guerrillas.[6]

The 1950s was the labeled as the first golden age of Philippine cinema. Four big production studios (LVN Pictures, Sampaguita Pictures, Premiere Productions and Lebran International) were at their peak in filmmaking, employing premier directors like Gerardo de León, Eddie Romero and César Gallardo while contracting the biggest stars of that period. The Filipino film industry was one of the busiest and bustling film communities in Asia, releasing an average of 350 films a year making Philippines second to Japan in terms of film productions a year.

The premier directors of the era were (but not limited to):

  • Lamberto Avellana
  • Gerardo de León
  • Gregorio Fernández
  • César Gallardo
  • Armando Garces
  • Eddie Romero
  • Cirio Santiago

The biggest stars of the era were (but not limited to):

The four biggest production studios produced most of the notable films of Philippine cinema during this era. In 1951, the movie Roberta of Sampaguita Pictures which featured leading child stars was the hit. LVN Pictures, under the leadership of the Doña Sisang de León, not only specialized in super productions, rural comedies and musicals, but also produced socially-relevant films such as Avellana's Anak Dalita (1956), Tony Santos's Badjao (1957) and Manuel Silos's Biyaya ng Lupa (1959). Sampaguita Pictures mainly produced high-gloss, glamorous pictures such as Maalaala Mo Kaya (1954). On the other, hand Premiere Productions released most of the action films of the decade, such as Sawa sa Lumang Simboryo (1952), Salabusab (1954) and Huwag Mo Akong Limutin (1960).

High production values on the motion pictures during this era produced movies that gained international acclaim. In 1952, Manuel Conde's Genghis Khan became the first Asian film to be shown at the Venice and Cannes Film Festival, a feat that would not be repeated until the 1970s. Inspired by Conde's picture, Hollywood remade Genghis Khan in 1956 as The Conqueror with John Wayne as the lead star.[6][9][12]

In 1956, Anak Dalita copped the Golden Harvest Award (Best Picture) of the prestigious Asia-Pacific Film Festival. Actress Lilia Dizon, was presented with the Best Actress Award by the prince of Cambodia, Norodom Sihanouk, for the film Kandelerong Pilak in the 1954 Asia-Pacific Film Festival. Leroy Salvador was also recognized in his performance as Best Supporting Actor for the film Huk sa Bagong Pamumuhay (1953) in the same film festival.

During this era, the first award-giving body was also established in 1950. The María Clara Awards of the Manila Times Publishing Corp., was composed of film publicists and writers who voted for the exemplary achievements of Filipino motion pictures in a calendar year. In 1953, the María Clara folded up to give way to the establishment of the Filipino Academy of Movie Arts and Sciences (FAMAS), the Philippines' equivalent to the United States' Academy Awards in prestige.

During this period, Filipinos saw Hollywood's first full length picture in living Technicolor. Soon after, Filipino local producers started presenting full-length pictures in color despite some technical deficiency, one of which was Prinsipe Amante (Prince Amante).[9]

1960s

This era is characterized by rampant commercialism with James Bond and Western knock offs, and in the latter 60's, the so-called bomba (soft porn) pictures. It was also the era of musical films produced mostly by Sampaguita Pictures and their discovered talents.

The studio systems came under siege from the growing labor movement, which resulted in labor-management conflicts. The first studio to close was Lebran followed by Premiere Productions then LVN. Those production studios were replaced by new and independent producers like Regal Films, which was established by Lily Monteverde in 1962.

The decade also saw the emergence of the youth subculture best represented by the Beatles and rock and roll. As a result, certain movie genres were made to cater to this trend. Fan movies and teen love team-ups emerged, showing Nora Aunor and Vilma Santos, along with Tirso Cruz III and Edgar Mortiz as their respective screen sweethearts. In addition, movie genres showing disaffection to the status quo during the era were also popular. Action movies with Pinoy cowboys and secret agents as the movers of the plots depicted a "society ravaged by criminality and corruption".[6] Another kind of youth revolt, implying rejection of adult corruption, came in the form of movies featuring child stars. Near the end of this decade, another movie genre that embodied a different form of revolt took center stage. Soft porn movies, more popularly known as bomba films, increasingly became popular, and these films were described as a direct challenge to the conventions, norms and conduct of the society.

Even in the period of decline, several Philippine films that stood out. These include the following films by Gerardo de Leon:

  • Noli Me Tangere (Touch me Not) in 1961;
  • El Filibusterismo (Subversion) in 1962;
  • Huwag mo Akong Limutin (Never Forget Me) in 1960; and,
  • Kadenang Putik (Chain of Mud) in 1960.

During this period, Filipino filmmakers were more successful in presenting some full-length pictures in living Eastmancolor, one of which was Ito ang Pilipino by J.E. Production. This movie was produced and starred by Joseph Estrada.[9]

1970s to early 1980s

Touted as the second golden age of Philippine cinema, this was the period of the avant-garde filmmakers. At the turn of the 70s, local producers and filmmakers ceased to produce pictures in black and white.[6][9]

In 1972, the Philippines was placed under the martial law, and films were used as propaganda vehicles. President Ferdinand Marcos and his technocrats sought to regulate filmmaking through the creation of the Board of Censors for Motion Pictures (BCMP). Prior to the start of filming, a finished script was required to be submitted to the Board and incorporate the "ideology" of the New Society Movement such as, a new sense of discipline, uprightness and love of country. Annual festivals were revived, and the bomba films as well as political movies critical of the Marcos administration were banned.[6]

In spite of the censorship, the exploitation of sex and violence onscreen continued to assert itself. Under martial law, action films usually append an epilogue like claims that social realities depicted had been wiped out with the establishment of the New Society. The notorious genre of sex or bomba films still existed but in a milder, less overt way like female stars swimming in their underwear or taking a bath in their chemise, labeled as the "wet look." An example of the trend was the 1974 hit movie Ang Pinakamagandang Hayop sa Balat ng Lupa (The Most Beautiful Animal on the Face of the Earth) which featured former Miss Universe Gloria Díaz.[6]

In spite of the presence of censorship, this period paved way to the ascendancy of a new breed of directors. Some of the notable films made by these new crop of filmmakers were:

  • Lino Brocka
    • Tubog sa Ginto (1970)
    • Tinimbang Ka Ngunit Kulang (1974)
    • Maynila: Sa mga Kuko ng Liwanag (1975)
    • Insiang (1976)
  • Ishmael Bernal
    • Pagdating sa Dulo (1971)
    • Manila by Night (1980)
    • Relasyon (1982)
  • Celso Ad Castillo
    • Nympha (1971)
    • Daluyong at Habagat (1976)
    • Burlesk Queen (1977)
    • Pagputi ng Uwak, Pag-itim ng Tagak (1978)


In 1977, an unknown Filipino filmmaker going by his pseudonym Kidlat Tahimik, made a film entitled Mababangong Bangungot (Perfumed Nightmare), which won the International Critic’s Prize in the Berlin Film Festival that same year. Out of short film festivals sponsored by the University of the Philippines Film Center and by the Experimental Cinema of the Philippines, young filmmakers joined Kidlat Tahimik by distancing themselves from the traditions of mainstream cinema. Nick De Ocampo’s Oliver (1983) and Raymond Red’s Ang Magpakailanman (The Eternal, 1983) have received attention in festivals abroad.

In 1981, as mandated by Executive Order No. 640-A, the Film Academy of the Philippines was enacted, serving as the umbrella organization that oversees the welfare of various guilds of the movie industry and gave recognition to the artistic and technical excellence of the performances of its workers and artists.[13] The same year, Viva Films was established and began its rise as a production company.

During the closing years of martial rule, a number of films defiant of the Marcos dictatorship were made. Films such as Marilou Diaz-Abaya’s Karnal implicitly depicted this defiance in the film’s plot, wherein patricide ended a tyrannical father’s domination. In the same year, Mike de Leon’s Sister Stella L., a movie about oppression and tyranny was shown on the big screen. In 1985, Lino Brocka’s Bayan Ko: Kapit sa Patalim (My Country: Grip the Knife’s Edge) depicted images of torture, incarceration, struggles and oppression.[6] During this period, the Philippines ranked among the top 10 film-producing countries in the world, with an annual output of more than 300 movies.[14]

Late 1980s to 1990s

Around this period, most Filipino films were mass-produced with quality sacrificed for commercial success. Story lines were unimaginative and predictable, comedy was slapstick, and the acting was either mediocre or overly dramatic. Producers were antipathetic to new ideas, or risk-taking. Instead, they resorted to formulas that worked well in the past that cater to the standards and tastes of the masses.[5][14] Teen-oriented films, massacre movies, and soft pornographic pictures composed the majority of the genre produced.[6]

Aside from competition with Hollywood films,[8] the Asian Financial Crisis, escalating cost of film production, exorbitant taxes, arbitrary and too much film censorship, high-tech film piracy,[15] and rise of cable television further contributed for the trimming down of production costs of film outfits that resulted to falling box-office receipts of domestic films, and the eventual precarious state of the local film industry.[16]

In 1993, a television station ventured into movie production. ABS-CBN's Star Cinema produced Ronquillo: Tubong Cavite, Laking Tondo in cooperation with Regal Films. Five years later, another television station, GMA Network, started producing movies. GMA Films released the critically acclaimed Sa Pusod ng Dagat, Jose Rizal, and Muro Ami, which attained commercial success.[17]

2000 and beyond

The dawn of this era saw a dramatic decline of the Philippine movie industry.[18] Hollywood films dominated mainstream cinema even more,[8] and fewer than twenty quality local films were being produced and shown yearly.[5][18] Many producers and production houses later stopped producing films after losing millions of pesos.[8] Thereafter, a new sense of excitement and trend enveloped the industry with the coming of digital and experimental cinema. Seemingly signalling this was the winning of the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival 2000 of Raymond Red's short film ANINO (Shadows).[19] But truly pioneering this digital revolution was the 1999 digital feature film "STILL LIVES" by Jon Red. Many other digital filmmakers soon followed suit.[20] Cheaper production cost using digital media over film has helped the rebirth of independent filmmaking. Hailed as the New Wave in digital form, this decade saw the proliferation of digital films by independent filmmakers with international reach and caliber, and the introduction of locally-produced animated features.[21][22][23][24][25] While formulaic romantic comedies comprised the majority of mainstream releases, independent filmmakers spurred a renewed interest in Filipino movies through digital movies.

Signs of rebirth of the Philippine cinema arose by way of movies with inspirational themes. In 2002, Gil Portes released Mga Munting Tinig (Small Voices), a subdued movie about a teacher who inspired her students to follow their dreams; the movie also implied improving the country’s education system. A year later, Mark Meily’s comedy Crying Ladies, about three Filipinas working as professional mourners in Manila’s Chinatown but looking for other ways to earn a living, became a huge hit. Also that same year, Maryo J. de los Reyes made a buzz at various film festivals with Magnifico, a simple film with universal appeal about a boy trying to help his family survive their hardships.[14]

In 2006 and 2007, Filipino filmmakers started making movies using digital media.[26] Duda (Doubt) is an example of how a man driven by an idea for a film, against all odds, can succeed in creating a significant statement. Writer/Director Crisaldo Pablo used a cast of friends and some professional actors, and with the use of a Sony VX-1, a Hi-8 camcorder, made the first full-length digital movie ever shot in the Philippines. Comments by Cris Pablo and casts in the 'making of' featurette on the DVD demonstrated how much dedication to vision played in this movie.[27] Donsol, by director Adolf Alix, made waves with his debut digital movie about Donsol, a fishing town and in the opposite, a sanctuary to endangered whale sharks. Other filmmakers of note include Jeffrey Jeturian, Auraeus Solito, and Brillante Mendoza with his 2007 Filipino version of Danish Dogme 95 and Italian Cinéma vérité, Tirador (Slingshot). Lav Diaz is a leading figure in experimental Tagalog films whose works include long epics about Filipino life, some of which run up to 10 hours often testing the endurance of viewers.[14]

Although Filipino digital films are made in almost no time and with meager budget, they are strongly represented in international film festivals.[28][29] Numerous works of a new breed of filmmakers had their films seen at the prestigious film festivals around the world like in Berlin, Cannes, Venice, Vienna and Rotterdam.[21][30] with several winning prizes and awards.[31][32][33][34][35][36][37] Among the works included are Ang Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros (2005) by Auraeus Solito, Kubrador (2006) by Jeffrey Jeturian, Todo Todo Teros (2006) by John Torres, Endo (2007) by Jade Castro, Tribu (2007) by Jim Libiran, just to name a few.

In 2007, a Filipino short film entitled Napapanggap (Pretend) by Debbie Formoso, a recent graduate of MFA Master of Film Art at LMU Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, had a successful run in a number of US film festivals.[38] Several other short films,[39][40] including Pedro "Joaquin" Valdes's Bulong (Whisper),[41] as well as documentaries[42], garnered international attention and honors.

In 2008, Serbis (Service) by Brillante Mendoza became the first Filipino full-length film to compete for Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival since internationally acclaimed director Lino Brocka's Bayan Ko: Kapit sa Patalim (My Country: Grip the Knife's Edge) in 1984.[7][43][44] The same year, the first full-length animated Filipino film, Urduja, topbilled by Cesar Montano and Regine Velasquez as voices behind the lead characters, premiered in local theaters. The film was done by over 400 Filipino animators, who produced more than 120,000 drawings that ran in 1,922 scenes equivalent to 8,771 feet of film.[45] Later in the year, the Philippine movie industry took centerstage at the 6th Edition of the Festival Paris Cinema 2008 in France. About 40 Filipino films were shown at the film festival, with Star Cinema’s Caregiver (starring Sharon Cuneta) and Ploning (Judy Ann Santos) as opening films. Filipino actor Piolo Pascual was invited by Paris Mayor Delanoe and actress Charlotte Rampling to grace the occasion.[46] Before the closing of 2008, another full-length animated film, Dayo: Sa Mundo ng Elementalia, graced the bigscreen as an entry to the 2008 Metro Manila Film Festival.[47][48]

The year 2009 brought the highest international esteem to a Filipino filmmaker when Brillante Mendoza was judged as the Best Director at the Cannes Film Festival for his film Kinatay (Butchered), a movie about murder and police brutality. The distinction elevated him to the ranks of international directors like Martin Scorsese, Francois Truffaut, Ingmar Bergman, Gus Van Sant, and others who have coveted the distinguished award.[49] His win was heralded by President Arroyo and his countrymen, at the same time, gave hope and pride to the ailing film industry of the country.[50]


In order to build up and stimulate the film industry, some Congressmen and Senators recently have authored a number of proposals and legislations pending ratification by the Philippine Congress. Many of the bills seek to ease the multiple taxes on producers, theater operators and patrons. One of the bills, for instance, proposes to exempt from the 30-percent amusement tax on all locally produced movies classified by regulators as for "general patronage" or "parental guidance-13." Another bill seeks to exempt local producers from the 12-percent value-added tax (VAT) on imported filmmaking raw materials and equipment.[3][51][52]

Yearly Revenue

Year No. of Films Revenue in US$ PhP vs US$ Revenue PhP
2007 165 $ 86.60M 46.01 Php 3.984B
2008 170 $100.97M 44.32 Php 4.475B
2009 161 $103.39M 47.64 Php 4.925B
2010 149 $123.86M 45.11 Php 5.587B
2011* 100 $108.77M 43.50 Php 4.733B
  • As of October 2011

See also

References

  1. ^ "The Role of José Nepomuceno in the Philippine Society: What language did his silent film speaks?". Stockholm University Publications. Retrieved on 2011-01-06.
  2. ^ Armes, Roy. "Third World Film Making and the West", p.152. University of California Press, 1987. Retrieved on 2011-01-09.
  3. ^ a b Tax deal for movie industry. Martel, Rene. The Manila Times Internet Edition. January 29, 2008.
  4. ^ "Finally, a national film archive". inquirer.net. http://entertainment.inquirer.net/18699/finally-a-national-film-archive. Retrieved 2011-11-02. 
  5. ^ a b c "Is the Curtain Finally Falling on the Philippine Movie Industry?". PhilNews.com. Retrieved 25 January 2009.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Anonymous. "History of Philippine Cinema". Philippine Journeys. Retrieved January 22, 2009.
  7. ^ a b c Cannes entry puts spotlight on Philippine indie films. Grafilo, John. Top News Light Reading. May 06, 2008.
  8. ^ a b c d e A bleak storyline for the Filipino film industry. Conde, Carlos H. International Herald Tribune. February 11, 2007.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Bautista, Arsenio 'Boots'. "History of Philippine Cinema". National Commission for Culture and the Arts. Retrieved January 23, 2009.
  10. ^ "Pioneering women film directors cited." (Fee required). Philippine Daily Inquirer. 2 November 2002. http://www.accessmylibrary.com/coms2/summary_0286-26612673_ITM. Retrieved 2008-09-28. 
  11. ^ "Pugo and Togo: Filmdoms Original Comic Tandem". Video 48. Retrieved on 2011-01-11.
  12. ^ "The Conqueror". Internet Movie Database (IMDB). Retrieved on 2011-01-06.
  13. ^ Film Academy of the Philippines Official Website. Retrieved January 26, 2009.
  14. ^ a b c d Filipino film industry reborn. Straight website. January 25, 2009.
  15. ^ It’s total war on pirates as movie industry reels. Mocon, Claudeth. Business Mirror. June 18, 2008.
  16. ^ Film and Video in the Philippines. Philippine Information Agency. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  17. ^ Philippine movies. Wow Paradise Philippines. Retrieved January 26, 2009.
  18. ^ a b RP Movie Industry Dying. Vanzi, Sol Jose. Newsflash. January 15, 2006.
  19. ^ http://www.festival-cannes.fr/en/archives/2000/awardCompetition.html
  20. ^ http://www.thepoc.net/thepoc-features/metakritiko/metakritiko-features/4670-looking-back-at-jon-reds-still-lives-part-1.html
  21. ^ a b From Manila to Cannes - New Philippine cinema and the digital revolution. CPH:DOX website. Retrieved January 22, 2009.
  22. ^ Gina Pareño wins more Int’l acting awards. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  23. ^ Mendoza & Pareño win Russia filmfest honors. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  24. ^ Pinoy actors win Greek filmfest best acting award. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  25. ^ Encantos’ wins in Venice Film Festival. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  26. ^ Indie films gaining ground in local movie industry. Sumpreme. November 8, 2008.
  27. ^ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0398031/
  28. ^ Pinoy Indie films win International awards. Good News Pilipinas. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  29. ^ Toronto Film Fest to showcase Pinoy films. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  30. ^ Foster Child wins Spain filmfest award. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  31. ^ ‘Tribu’ wins Paris Filmfest Youth Jury Prize.Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  32. ^ Brutus bags Hawaii filmfest top prize.Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  33. ^ Tuli wins Berlin Film Festival’s Top Prize. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  34. ^ film wins top prize in L-A filmfest Pinoy film wins top prize in LA filmfest. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  35. ^ Grand Jury Prize for Pisay in France. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  36. ^ Filipino films win big at Singapore and Germany Filmfests. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  37. ^ Kaleldo wins at the 8th Jeonju Film Festival. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  38. ^ Filipino short film a favorite in the US. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  39. ^ 9 Pinoy short films in French Filmfest. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  40. ^ Andong & 100 are victorious in Pusan film festival. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  41. ^ Filipino short film wins in Beijing competition. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  42. ^ Pinoy documentary wins in Brussels. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  43. ^ Serbis competes in 61st Cannes Film Festival. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  44. ^ Cannes brings cheer to ailing Philippine film industry. Philippine Daily Inquirer. May 11, 2008.
  45. ^ Urduja- A Milestone for RP animation. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  46. ^ Paris to honor Philippine movies. Good News Pilipinas website. Retrieved January 24, 2009.
  47. ^ Dayo animates MMFF. The Philippine Daily Inquirer.. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  48. ^ Dayo showcasing local animation. The Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved January 25, 2009.
  49. ^ (2009-05-25). "Brillante Outshines Tarantino, Ang Lee in Cannes". Good News Pilipinas Web Site. Retrieved on 2011-01-26.
  50. ^ (2009-08-20). "CNN's Talk Asia features Brillante Mendoza". Good News Pilipinas. Retrieved on 2011-01-26.
  51. ^ Senate Bill No.4 - Revival of the Philippine Movie Industry. Senator Jinngoy Estrada Official Website. Retrieved January 26, 2009.
  52. ^ Solons author bill to boost movie industry. Malaya Online Newspaper. February 18, 2008.

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