Metro Film Festival grosses P1 billion

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FROM the two-week run of the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF), the P1-billion gross earnings broke all records from eight official entries.

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These entries were: My Little Bossings, Girl Boy Bakla Tomboy, Pagpag, and Kimmy Dora 3 took the lead four among the entries in the 39th MMFF.

The rest of the entries include (in no particular order) Kaleidoscope World, Pedro Calungsod: Batang Martir, Boy Golden and 10, 000 Hours.

“With almost a billion pesos in overall box office, we are overwhelmed and so proud that the MMFF has managed to break records,” said Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Francis Tolentino.

Tolentino, overall head of the MMFF, said this only proves that the “Filipino movie industry is not only surviving, but thriving despite stiff competition from foreign movies.”

”But more than the money and despite the issues surrounding the Festival each year, we have actually proven that MMFF is a strong Filipino tradition that brings us together as a family despite the hardships that we’ve faced as a nation, especially with typhoon Yolanda last year,” said Tolentino.

Tolentino has been heading the MMFF since 2010 and has steadily set the record for the highest grossing Festival in 39 years.

“We always love a good story, a good laugh, and a few tears here and there. More importantly, we love our own. And the MMFF movies give us that and more. And let’s not forget our New Wave Section for independent, student short films and animation,” he added.

The MMFF New Wave Section served as the pre-Festival activity, which ran last December 18-24 in SM Megamall and Glorietta 4 cinemas.

The MMFF held its annual Parade of Stars last December 22 and Awards Night last December 27.

10,000 Hours raked in most of the major awards, including Best Picture, Gatpuno Villegas Award, Best Director for Bb. Joyce Bernal, and Best Actor for Robin Padilla, while Girl Boy Bakla Tomboy and My Little Bossings received the 2nd and 3rd Best Picture Awards, respectively. Maricel Soriano from Girl Boy Bakla Tomboy won the Best Actress Award.

The selection of winners for all the categories was a rigorous process, from the selection of the members of the Board of Jurors (coming from different sectors of society as well as members of the movie industry) to the private ballot voting and auditing of the votes through an auditing firm.

Tolentino thanked the movie industry, the MMFF Executive Committee, the Special Working Committee on Festival Preparations, the Selection Committee, the Board of Jurors, and the Mayors of Metro Manila for their continued support to the MMDA and for the successful Festival.

The proceeds from the amusement tax from the local government units of Metro Manila during the MMFF will be given to beneficiaries of the movie industry, namely: Movie Workers Welfare Fund, the FilmAcademy of the Philippines, the Motion Picture Anti-Film Piracy Council, the Film Development Council of the Philippines, and Optical Media Board.

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