ABS-CBN and TV5 ink partnership deal

In what feels like a superhero crossover event to end the machinations of an evil villain, TV5 and ABS-CBN signed a landmark partnership deal that effectively allows ABS-CBN to regain their former reach on free television. ABS-CBN was denied a franchise two years ago by PH Congress. “I used the presidential powers to tell Congress that you are dealing with scoundrels and if you continue to kowtow with them, kawawa ang Pilipino,” admitted former PH President Duterte (shudders) in 2022. The supposed violations were all previously cleared by relevant agencies and no cases related to the denial of the franchise have been filed.

ABS-CBN is the country’s most popular network with arguably the best programs and most influential celebrities. They also have the widest reach with their regional channels and have been an important source of news and information. This reach and influence have been significantly minimized during the time of Duterte, whose reign is now being investigated by the International Criminal Court, and the recent elections that ushered in the return of a deposed dictator’s son to the presidency.

Update: 10/22/2022 The landmark deal between the two networks was killed off following political pressure. Not a surprise in a country run by dictators and political scum old and new. The absence of the network with the broadest reach proves advantageous to rotten politicians, especially in keeping communities that are not as widely connected to the web, blind to corruption and widespread abuse of power.

2022 FAMAS Awards Complete List of Winners

All eyes are on Katips: The Movie as it won seven awards including Best Actor, Best Director, and Best Film at the 70th FAMAS Awards. Set for a commercial run starting August 3rd, Katips premiered on November 2021 and was adapted from the 2016 stage musical “Katips: Ang Mga Bagong Katipunero.”

Katips will go head-to-head with a film that recounts the last days of a deposed dictator’s family in the Presidential Palace as they were driven out by the nation that they abused and plundered. But of course, people easily forget especially when history can be manipulated via disinformation. Today, even the devil has a sob story to tell and people can be swayed to believe them if they have the means to do it.

This is why a film like Katips, which reflects the true history of the nation, is important. This country has already failed in honoring its past and the blood spilled to ensure its freedoms. Let’s make sure that we don’t all forget.

Continue reading “2022 FAMAS Awards Complete List of Winners”

Katips: The Movie shows abuses of Marcos’ Martial Law

On August 3, the Philippines will bear witness to a movie that serves as an exclamation point to the landslide win that reinstalled this country’s greatest shame to Malacañang. Whether it was the result of years of propaganda and fake news, online manipulation, or there really were just 31 million Filipinos who are rotten to the core and willing to overlook the thousands who were murdered, abused, and suffered under the very families that they now worship, the grim fact remains. The Marcoses are back in power along with the heir of a copycat strongman whose name is synonymous with misogyny and abuse.

But while most people and companies resort to ass-kissing for survival and even when all hope seems lost, there will always be a few that will stand up against injustice.

The Philippine Stagers Foundation has produced musicals over the years featuring the lives of heroes and martyrs, the suffering that they endured, and the snapshot of the world that needed them at the time. This year, they are back doing what they do best.

Continue reading “Katips: The Movie shows abuses of Marcos’ Martial Law”

Cinemalaya 2022 Complete List of Entries

2022 is starting to look like a year for comebacks. While some of them are downright tragic, like the return to power of the family of an abusive kleptocrat, there are a few that are a welcome distraction during these dark times.

Cinemalaya returns to the CCP and select Ayala and SM cinemas on August 5-14 with 11 full-length films and 12 short features in competition.

Continue reading “Cinemalaya 2022 Complete List of Entries”

Darna soars again this 2022

In a time of darkness, a hero will rise. And so the country’s most popular superhero will fly again this 2022.

This incarnation of Darna stars women who know a thing or two about being heroes in real life – Iza Calzado as Leonor/Unang Darna, Jane de Leon (Darna), and Janella Salvador (Valentina). Also starring are Zaijan Jaranilla (Ding), and Joshua Garcia (Brian).

Continue reading “Darna soars again this 2022”

MMFF 2022 Complete List of Entries

The country’s most commercially successful film festival is set to go back to cinemas this 2022. The selection committee unveiled the first four entries on July 8th. The other half of the line-up will be selected in September. We will update this post with entries and trailers as they become available.

Here are the entries:

Director: Cathy Garcia-Molina
Production: ABS-CBN Film Productions
Scriptwriter: Enrico C. Santos
Starring: Vice Ganda and Ivana Alawi

Director: Rodel Nacianceno
Production: ABS-CBN Film Productions
Scriptwriter: Patrick Valencia
Starring: Coco Martin and Jodi Sta. Maria

Director & Scriptwriter: Shugo Praico
Production: Rein Entertainment Productions
Starring: Ian Veneracion, Mon Confiado and Heaven Peralejo

Continue reading “MMFF 2022 Complete List of Entries”

Viddsee Partners with WarnerMedia for “Storytelling For Good” Programme

Regional storyteller platform, Viddsee, kicks off 2022 with an inaugural Storyteller Boot Camp in partnership with WarnerMedia and Motion Picture Association (MPA).

The boot camp will be held over 3-days from 17 – 19 January 2022, with 12-sessions by 35 speakers, covering topics from the basics of storytelling to insightful masterclass sessions about mobile storytelling, budgeting, showrunning, creative producing, and pitching concepts.

Speaker highlights leading the masterclass sessions of the boot camp include David Uloth, director of The Voice and The Far Shore; Peabody and Golden Bell award winning drama and documentary filmmaker, and co-founder of IFA Media, Francis Smith; and mobile storytelling expert, Miranda Morey.

“Today, becoming and growing as a creator comes from unstructured ways. We are excited to bring together experts in the field of storytelling in a knowledge-sharing session with hopes to further develop and grow the storytelling community in our network of creators,” said Ho Jia Jian, Co-Founder, Viddsee. He adds, “The diversity of speakers and topics covered in the sessions will be able to cater to storytellers from the aspiring to experienced.”

Continue reading “Viddsee Partners with WarnerMedia for “Storytelling For Good” Programme”

MMFF 2021 Returns to the Cinemas starting December 25

The Metro Manila Film Festival is heading back to the cinemas this year as restrictions due to the pandemic have been relaxed. This follows the recent re-opening of theaters that have so far gotten trickles in audiences despite the roster of the usual blockbuster drawers shown.

To date, no information has been released if the MMFF movies will be available online for streaming. For those who would brave the malls to watch a movie, the following safety protocols are being observed by cinemas:

Moviegoers must take a body temperature check before entering the cinema
Moviegoers must present an authentic vaccination card that shows the completion of two vaccine doses
Moviegoers and staff must adhere to the IATF’s current ruling on face shields, face masks
No eating inside the cinema
Theaters will implement “socially-distanced seating,” even for moviegoers who are entering together (two seats apart)
Contactless and cashless transactions to be encouraged during ticket-purchasing
Improved air ventilation
Availability of hand sanitizers at every cinema entrance
Mandatory hand-washing every 30 minutes for cinema employees
Deep cleaning of surfaces, chairs between screenings

Here are the entries for the 2021 Metro Manila Film Festival:

“Big Night” (Cignal Entertainment, Ideafirst Company, Octobertrain Films, and Quantum Films)
Starring: Christian Bables, Eugene Domingo
Directed by: Jun Robles Lana

Continue reading “MMFF 2021 Returns to the Cinemas starting December 25”

ABS-CBN reminds Filipinos: Andito tayo Para sa Isa’t Isa

Christmas is never the same without an ABS-CBN Station ID. It is as much a part of Filipino culture and tradition as the network itself. And while the network has been targetted by the Duterte administration and ripped off of its franchise following the attacks of a disgruntled president, ABS-CBN shines through and offers much-needed hope for the citizenry.

Kaya pa, laban lang, gabay nati’y pagmamahalan. This year’s station ID reminds Filipinos that guided by unity and love, we can still fight. This comes at a time when the dark cloud cast by an administration that normalized abuse, misogyny, and even murder is about to come to an end. Sure, we may be facing bigger and more sinister demons in the next election but we have a chance to fight.

Today, we hold on to hope that love can triumph over the divisiveness and hate seeded by disinformation from those in power. Tomorrow we fight as if our lives depended on it because they really do.

Inigo Pascual to star alongside Susan Sarandon in Fox Country Music Drama ‘Monarch’

Inigo Pascual is going to Hollywood! This is a well-deserved break I must say. More than just being a showbiz legacy, Inigo has made a name in PH entertainment and music industry on his own merit. He has massive hits locally and has released the international album ‘Options’ in June 2021.

Monarch is a cross-generational musical drama about America’s first family of country music, the Romans. At the head of the Romans is the incredibly talented but tough Queen of Country Music Dottie Cantrell Roman (Susan Sarandon). Together with her beloved husband Albie (Trace Adkins), Dottie created a country music dynasty. But although the Roman name is synonymous with authenticity, the basis of their success is a lie. When her reign as country queen is jeopardized, crown heiress Nicolette ‘Nicky’ Roman (Anna Friel) will stop at nothing to protect her family’s legacy while ensuring her own pursuit of fame. Pascual will play Ace Grayson, Nicky’s adopted son who also dreams of becoming a country star.

“Monarch” will debut midseason for Fox on January 30, 2022.

Gameboys gets 2021 International Emmy Kids Awards nomination

Gameboys – the acclaimed Filipino series that tells of a love story between two boys amidst the pandemic has added another feather in its cap. Today, it was announced as one of the nominees under the Kids: Live-Action category at the 2021 International Emmy Kids Awards.

“Children see and learn much of what they know of the world through the stories and characters they watch on television.” said Bruce Paisner, President & CEO of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. “We congratulate the Nominees for their outstanding talent in entertaining and educating young viewers worldwide on a diversity of topics that impact their everyday life.” Winners will be announced on October 12, 2021 at 9 am Eastern Time on the International Academy’s website.

No stranger to international recognition, Gameboys won Best Web Series at the Seoul Indie Shorts Awards in November 2020.

Gameboys is available on Youtube (better version IMO) with an updated version on Netflix. A movie was recently released online and a second season is coming up real soon.

Check out the trailers below:

Continue reading “Gameboys gets 2021 International Emmy Kids Awards nomination”

On The Job: The Missing 8 to premiere at the 78th Venice International Film Festival

The sequel to the critically-acclaimed 2013 action thriller, On The Job, is set to premiere on September 10, 2021 at the 8th Venice International Film Festival. An Asia-wide release will follow as a 6-episode series on September 12 on HBO GO.

On The Job: The Missing 8 tells the story of Sisoy Salas, a corrupt journalist seeking justice for his colleagues, and convict Roman Rubio, a hired gun who is regularly brought out of prison to perform assassinations.

Per director Erik Matti’s post: This film attempts to explore, through the disappearance of eight people, the reality in the Philippines that is never shown in the news. Politicians are gangsters. Journalists are paid hacks. Prisoners as assassins. This ensemble of crazy characters intersect to represent a deep-seated culture of impunity and non-accountability in a country like the Philippines.

While I disagree that this is not in the news, as we have heard of the very words uttered in the film from the current administration’s murderous war on drugs, OTJ has always shown the bloody and ruthless reality in the country. Not surprisingly, this film is based on true events.

Check out the Venice International Film Festival trailer below.

Continue reading “On The Job: The Missing 8 to premiere at the 78th Venice International Film Festival”

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