And the world is awaiting its amazing stage bared and presented.
The Philippines is one of the major participants in the festival not only because of the new films submitted, accepted and premiered for screening but mainly the focus on the country’s Top 3 box-office titles exhibited nationwide last year.
One of the three leading Philippine releases is “Kita Kita” produced by Spring Films, the company which was formed by actor Piolo Pascual, producer and talent manager Erickson Raymundo and director Bb. Joyce Bernal. The film starred Alessandra de Rossi and Empoy Marquez and directed by Sigrid Andrea P. Bernardo. The project was bankrolled into a P10M budget but it earned P320M in its national screenings. At the moment, Piolo and the Philippine contingent are quite excited in the participation of their film in one of the leading filmfests in Korea.
The other two movies on the Top 3 earnings were “Gandarapiddo: The Revenger Squad” directed by Bernal and headlined by Vice Ganda, Daniel Padilla and Pia Wurtzbach and “My Exs & Whys” helmed by Cathy Garcia-Molina and led by Liza Soberano and Enrique Gil, known as LizQuen tandem. The former took home a whopping P571M from screenings in the whole country alone especially in the 2017 Metro Manila Film Festival while the latter bagged a total of P400M in gross including its international exhibitions. Both projects are produced by Star Cinema, the film arm of ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation.
“Gandarapiddo: The Revenger Squad,” “Kita Kita” and “My Exs and Whys” are significant fares from the Philippines because they will be feted with honors in Bucheon under the Made in Asia component of the fest.
These three films will be screened during the duration of the BiFan as the Philippines is one of the Asian countries largely producing films for local consumption. Other representative countries to Made in Asia with their Top 3 movies under the Big Industry Gathering (B.I.G.) are Thailand, Korea, China, Japan, India, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Vietnam, Indonesia and Malaysia.
According to BiFan’s website, Made in Asia is a new section in the festival. It “examines the core factors behind how the mainstream Asian film market has managed to beat out Hollywood in becoming the largest global film market, while also striving for the strengthening and development of production networks. BIFAN’s Made in Asia is the world’s first Asian film industry program, and is made up of two components: a forum that looks into the ongoing trends within the Asian film industry – beginning with the film festival’s special program, Best of Asia – and a networking program for Asian producers. If the purpose of a genre film festival is to ‘discover’ the newest styles in filmmaking and the up-and-coming masters of genre films, Best of Asia’s purpose is to show the current mainstream trends that have been selected by the audiences and movie markets of different countries. This shows that genre films have already crossed over from being a subculture to being part of the mainstream film culture. Not only does Made in Asia offer a chance for audiences to see the newest hit films from the Asian film industry, it also acts as a stepping stone for the establishment of a network for Asia’s leading producers.”
This columnist is the one writing the Philippine film market report for Made in Asia book that is why we had the field day to monitor, research and write the state of the country film industry last year.