‘Tell the world to come and make movies here’
The two-day International Film Exposition, which seeks to develop the Philippines into a film hub in Asia, attracted representatives of 10 Asean countries.
“This is significant. The participation of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations sparks a significant dialogue,” Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP, host of the event) chair Briccio Santos said shortly after the ceremonial ribbon-cutting at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City on Friday. “It’s time we worked alongside our neighbors. We may have issues, but we have more commonalities,” Santos told Inquirer.
The film market featured over 50 exhibitor booths showcasing film technology, production, distribution and other aspects of the business. In his welcome speech, Santos noted, “From film production equipment suppliers to state-of-the-art post-production services, production studios to distribution arms, film schools and film commissions—we’ve gathered top-notch participants from around the globe.”
There was a dedicated Asean corner, where booths managed by participants from the Philippines, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam showcased their countries’ contributions to film development.
Prominent local contributors included Star Cinema, GMA Network/Films, Post Manila, SM Cinemas, Array’s, Mavshack, Quantum Films and Mothership. Among the foreign exhibitors were Taipei Film Commission, Film France, Screen Authority Sapporo (Japan), South Korea’s Munhawa Broadcasting Company, and Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum.
During the symposium “Coproduction: Collaboration, Commerce and Creativity,” Ronald Monteverde, CEO of Revolucion Media Group and chair of Revolver Studios, discussed how Filipinos could collaborate with Asian and Western neighbors.
Monteverde’s production outfit, Reality Entertainment, and Star Cinema coproduced the crime-thriller film “On the Job,” which premiered in the Directors’ Fortnight section of the 66th Cannes International Film Festival in May.
“Local filmmakers should work on coproduction,” said Monteverde. “We have a lot of very good locations for filming. We can help minimize [foreign partners’] production cost without sacrificing quality.” He advised film lovers to “tell the world to come to the Philippines … and do more projects with us.”
Film producer Josabeth Alonso, whose films “Kubrador” and “Ang Babae sa Septic Tank” were screened abroad, pointed out, “Filmmakers should know which films are marketable.”
An estimated 700 participants attended the first day of the expo.