Yet another change has unfolded in the Metro Manila Film Festival, and this time, they need not defend it. For 2017, the executive committee has decided not to release the first day box office receipts of each of the eight finalists so as not to influence viewer preference.
Nevertheless, based on the queues in cinemas across the country on Christmas Monday, there is no need for box office tallies to figure out that the battle for MMFF 2017 supremacy is between Coco Martin’s “Ang Panday” and Vice Ganda, Daniel Padilla and Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach’s “Gandarrapiddo: The Revenger Squad.”
Moreover, on Tuesday, MMFF execom spokesperson Noel Ferrer sent text message to The Manila Times with information that the first day box office gross has exceeded figures of MMFF 2015.
“The Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) Executive Committee, along with the producers of the festival entries plus the theater representatives have agreed not to release any actual figures and rankings so as not to create a bandwagon effect on the viewers,” the statement said.
“We encourage everyone to support all the eight entries because we are as strong as our weakest film. We are very happy to say that a large part of the Filipino audiences have gone back to the theaters again this Christmas and we have exceeded even the record first day box office gross of MMFF 2015.
“We are looking forward to more and more people watching all MMFF entries until January 7. MMFF – Magkaisang Magpaunlad ang Filipino Films!” the MMFF execom statement ended.
In 2015, the Top 4 entries in terms of box office receipts were “Beauty and the Bestie” starring Vice Ganda and Coco Martin; “My Bebe Love: #Kilig Pa More” starring Vic Sotto, AiAi de las Alas, Alden Richards and introducing Maine Mendoza; “Walang Forever” and “Haunted Masion.”
The total gross receipts of the festival by the last day was P1.02 billion. My Bebe Love topped the box office for the first three days, but Beauty and the Bestie eventually earned more.
In 2016, the total gross receipts did not even reach half of the total earnings of MMFF 2015 with the controversial selection of four independent films and four mainstream movies sans box office stars.
Depending on the results of the MMFF Awards night taking place this evening at the Kia Theater, the rankings may still change and even produce a sleeper hit what with last year’s victory for “Die Beautiful.”
The other six entries this year are “All Of You” starring Jennylyn Mercado and Derek Ramsay; “Meant to Beh” starring Vic Sotto and Dawn Zulueta; “Deadma Walking” starring Joross Gamboa and Edgar Allan Guzman; “Haunted Forest” starring Jane Oineza, Jameson Blake, Maris Racal and Jon Lucas; “Ang Larawan” starring Rachel Alejandro, Paulo Avelino and Joanna Ampil; and “Siargao” starring Jericho Rosales. Erich Gonzales and Jasmine Curtis-Smith.