It appears that 2022 is the year for the Philippine film industry as three Filipino films will represent the country on the international scene.
Per the Film Development Council of the Philippines’ announcement, three Filipino-directed films are selected to participate in the 17th Osaka Asian Film Festival (OAFF), which will run from March 10 to 21, 2022.
The first film is Jun Robles Lana’s Big Night!, which will compete against 14 other feature films for the top awards at OAFF, namely the Grand Prix and Most Promising Talent Award.
With an interesting, comedic take on the war on drugs, Big Night! is a black comedy film that follows the story of a gay hairdresser named Dharna who is accused of being a drug user. The film stars Die Beautiful star Christian Bables as Darna. Bables is also joined by veteran actors Eugene Domingo, Gina Alajar, Ricky Davao, Gina Pareño, and John Arcilla.
The film made its debut on the big screen at the 2021 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF), where they won 8 trophies, including the coveted Best Picture, Best Director for Lana, Best Actor for Bables, and Best Supporting Actor for Arcilla.
Meanwhile, Carlo Francisco Manatad’s Kun Maupay Man It Panahon (Whether the Weather is Fine) will be featured under the festival’s Spotlight lineup, a section that features rising films that highlight new talents in cinema. The film will be screened alongside Bangladesh’s Mohammad Rabby Mridha’s No Ground Beneath the Feet and China’s Xie Yiran’s A Room of One’s Own.
Starring Daniel Padilla and Charo Santos-Concio, Manatad’s Kun Maupay Man It Panahon (Whether the Weather is Fine) centers around a young man’s search for his mother after Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines.
The film first premiered at the 74th Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland, where it bagged the Cinema e Gioventù Prize. It later premiered at the 2021 Toronto International Film Festival and 2021 MMFF.
The last film to participate at the 17th OAFF is Irene Villamor’s Ikaw at Ako at ang Ending (You and Me and the Ending), where it will be featured under the category New Action! Southeast Asia, a special program that showcases new movements in Southeast Asian cinema.
With Kim Molina and Jerald Napoles headlining the film, Villamor’s Ikaw at Ako at ang Ending (You and Me and the Ending) centers on the story of two hopeless strangers who fall in love with each other. To escape their miserable realities, they go to the northernmost part of the country where an unexpected end awaits them.
The Osaka Asian Film Festival is an annual festival that screened films of different genres, and from across 19 countries and regions, including the Philippines, Malaysia, China, Korea, and Hong Kong, among many others. The festival began in 2015 with the aim to introduce Asian films on the international scene.
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