Cheer Factor: US trade mag interviews PDI
The Hollywood Reporter (THR), one of two major entertainment trade publications in the United States (the other one is Variety), has taken note of the flourishing independent film movement in the Philippines. In a two-page article published on October 11 on its special coverage of the Busan International Film Festival, THR points out that “the real story” of the current boom in the Philippine indie film scene is “in its commercial viability.”
The magazine proceeds to quote from an e-mail interview with Inquirer Entertainment’s Bayani San Diego Jr.: “The once emergent or independent cinema is quickly gaining a foothold in mainstream cineplexes.”
The most recent indie box office hit, Jade Castro’s comedy “Zombadings 1: Patayin sa Shokot si Remington,” caught the industry “off guard,” San Diego told writer Michael Mackey via the e-mail exchange, adding that the movie opened in 50 cinemas, then in 12 more theaters on its first weekend run, and was screened for more than a month.
“That would’ve been unthinkable six years ago,” San Diego told Mackey.
The article also discusses the Film Development Council of the Philippines’s role in supporting local indie filmmakers, including nationwide promotion via its National Cinema Program and the pitch to make the country a shooting destination of foreign productions.
Again the story quotes San Diego, who cites the Josh Hartnett starrer “I Come With the Rain,” the French film “Le Marquis,” Korea’s “Romance Island” and versions of the reality TV series “Survivor”—all shot in various parts of the Philippines.
All these tell-tale signs of an exciting period in the history of Philippine movies were initially given prominent exposure in the Inquirer.