Film Academy makes history

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GEORGE VAIL KABRISTANTE

The previous week saw Film Academy of the Philippines (FAP), considered as the local equivalent to Hollywood’s Oscars, successfully holding its 35th Luna Awards held at the Plaza of Resorts World Manila.

It was refreshing and surprising to note that their choices of winners were as varied as the new and veteran actors fielded in the harvest of many good films coming from both the indie and mainstream sectors of the past year.

“Die Beautiful” romped away with most of the major awards –

Best Picture, Best Direction (Jun Lana), Best Supporting Actor (Christian Bables), Best Screenplay (Rody Vera) and Best Editing (Benjamin Gonzales Tolentino).

Hasmine Killip of “Pamilya Ordinaryo” who was Urian’s Best Actress won over veteran actress Jaclyn Jose and other nominees while Paolo Ballesteros who won Best Actor in the MMFF and Eddy’s Awards lost to Bembol Roco in “Pauwi Na.”

A relatively new actress Chai Fonacier who was also equally good as support in “Pauwi Na” won Best Supporting Actress for “Patay na si Jesus” over other senior and veteran actresses.

The film “Ignacio de Loyola” which was the most underrated film the past year was the festival’s dark horse, fortunately garnering the second highest number of awards for Best Cinematography (Lee Briones Meily), Best Production Design (Leo Velasco Jr.), Best Musical Score (Ryan Cayabyab) and Best Sound (Albert Michael Idioma).

Shortly after the awards rites, Caveat chanced upon FAP director general Leo Martinez, Philippine Motion Picture Directors Association (PMPDA) president William Mayo with director Joe Carreon, and Production Designers Guild of the Philippines (PDGP) president Manny Morfe huddled together at their Movie Workers Welfare Foundation (Mowelfund) home ground at Rosario Drive in Cubao. Their discussion was for another daunting event for the industry workers scheduled toward the end of the same week – the two-day Film Workers Summit at the University of the Philippines Film Center.

Martinez, in keeping with the aim of the groundbreaking summit together with his board members, had to gather around 500 film workers from various sectors of the movie industry – actors, producers, directors, technical workers, production and creative staff – to come together for the unprecedented event.

Spearheaded and supported by the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) headed by Liza Diño, the turnout on the first day was overwhelming as expected. It primarily launched two banner projects of the FDCP, namely the National Registry of Film Workers and the Magna Carta for Film Workers.

The series of roundtable discussions were put into a formal resolution aimed at providing solutions to the pressing problems of the industry’s self-employed workers including those out of jobs without security benefits to fall back on.

Present at the historic summit were FAP officers and members coming from PMPDA, Directors Guild of the Philippines, Katipunan ng mga Artistang Pilipino sa Pelikula at Telebisyon, Screenwriters Guild of the Philippines, Filipino Society of Cinematographers, Pilipino Musical Directors Association, Motion Picture Audio Society of the Philippines, United Film Editors Guild for Motion Pictures, Assistant Directors, Production Managers Association for Motion Picture and Mowelfund.

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