Monday, July 15, 2019


In 2005 the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) partnered with Econolink Investments Inc. to form the Cinemalaya Foundation, an NGO whose purpose is to help develop and promote independent filmmaking in the country. This intent is crystallized in the Cinemalaya Film Fest, the first of which was held that same year at the CCP, and has been that way for 14 editions of the festival. Ten indie filmmakers chosen from a pool of submitted proposals are given investments by Cinemalaya to produce their films, to be judged and given appropriate prizes. While the event was limited to Metro Manila, this year they plan to go national with their screenings. reports that the 2019 Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Fest will be expanding from its home at the CCP complex and will also be screening its entries on key locations across the country. This was revealed Tuesday, July 16, at a press conference by festival director Chris Millado. He says that owing to the film fest celebrating a milestone 15 years, they plan to share the participating indie films to the public as soon as possible. Key locations that might also hold the Cinemalaya this year include Bacolod, Cavite, Davao, Iloilo, Legazpi, Naga and Pampanga.

The usual screening locations of prior Cinemalaya Film Fest movies have been at Ayala Malls, but the foundation has inked an additional agreement with Vista Cinemas according to Millado, along with a variety of micro-cinemas. Even the Film Development Council of the Philippines will make available more cinemas in Manila, Iloilo and Davao City for exhibition of the festival entries. Millado claims that these are just few of the “15 Reasons” for Filipinos to expect with the 2019 Cinemalaya Festival.

“Cinemalaya is not just about watching films in the darkened theaters,” explains Chris Millado at the press con. “It’s also about seeing artwork in the walls, interacting with filmmakers after the screenings and talking about cinema and filmmaking.” Full-length indie films that will grace the festival next month include Kim Zuñiga and Sandro Del Rosario’s “Ani,” Joji Alonzo’s “Belle Douleur,” Maricel Cabrera-Cariaga’s “Children of the River,” Throp Nazareno’s “Edward,” Edwardo Roy Jr.’s “Fuccbois,” Theordore Boborol’s “Iska,” Arden Rod Condez’ “John Denver Trending,” Leilani Chavez and Danica Sta. Lucia’s “Malamaya,” Sheryl Rose Andres’ “Pandanggo sa Hukay,” and Xian Lim’s “Tabon.” Some notable mainstream stars in these productions are Mylene Dizon, Jay Manalo, Sunshine Cruz, Iza Calzado and Ricky Davao, who actually figures in “Ani” and “Fuccbois.”

The 15th Cinemalaya Film Fest runs August 2-11 at the CCP, with the Awards Night happening on the last day. Other screenings across the Philippines will run from August 7-13.

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