THE 40th Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) Awards brought together the most beautiful and talented personalities in showbiz, all in one night, to celebrate and culminate Filipino ingenuity seen in filmmaking.
Held at the plenary hall of the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), Pasay City on December 27, the event was filled with dazzling stars who came in their most stylish gowns and elaborately made up especially for the night.
But more than looking their best, all actors and creatives behind each of the eight entries also vied for the awards and trophies given out from the annual awarding ceremony.
Hosts for the night were Edu Manzano and Kris Aquino, who both entertained the crowd with their remarks. One of the highlight was when Kris mentioned that her co-produced film Feng Shui 2 is the “highest grossing opening day Filipino horror film in history.” To which Edu replied that the achievement officially made her the “horror film queen.”
Edu replaced Vice Ganda who had to back out because of his grandfather’s death.
Emerging as the biggest winner of the night was the Robin Padilla-led Bonifacio: Ang Unang Pangulo that got Best Picture, Best Theme Song, Best Float, Best Cinematography, Best Sound Engineering, and Best Musical Score.
Also victorious was the Dan Villegas romantic-comedy English Only Please starring Jennylyn Mercado and Derek Ramsay, who won Best Actress and Actor, respectively.
Other awards won by the festival’s only rom-com were 2nd Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Original Story, and Best Editor.
The 3rd Best Picture and another winner for the night was Erik Matti’s sequel, Kubot: The Aswang Chronicles 2, which stars Dingdong Dantes. The film also won Best Supporting Actress (Lotlot de Leon), Best Supporting Actor (Joey Marquez), Best Make-Up Artist, Best Visual Effects and Best Production Design honors.
Besides the awards, special citations were also given to MMFF’s biggest personalities including the Special Commemorative Award given to Manila Mayor Joseph “Erap” Estrada.
For his part, the former president and actor thanked MMDA chairman Francis Tolentino for his continued efforts in promoting filmmaking. He said, “We extend our special thanks to MMDA chairman Francis Tolentino for his support for industry. It was during his term that the highest gross for Filipino films were recorded. While facing many problems in Metro Manila, lumago at lumakas ang pelikulang Pilipino.”
Chairman Tolentino himself was an awardee that night when he was given the Special MMFF 40th Year Award.