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Changes in 2018 ToFarm film fest announced

By: - Reporter
/ 12:08 AM March 19, 2018

Raquel Villavicencio, selection committee member

Veteran filmmakers will be invited to direct some of the seven finalists in this year’s edition of the ToFarm Film Festival (TFF), its organizers announced on Wednesday.

“We were talking about this a week before he passed on. He said he wanted to impose some changes,” actress and ToFarm selection committee member Raquel Villavicencio said of the late director Maryo J. delos Reyes.


Delos Reyes, who served as ToFarm festival director for two straight years, died of a heart attack in January.

“He had wanted to have a screenplay competition in the festival. This means that the chosen scripts will not necessarily be directed by the person who wrote it,” Villavicencio explained to the Inquirer.


“Direk Maryo felt that the festival needed veteran and named directors to push the films.”
Pitching program

“We will push through with Maryo’s plan,” newly appointed festival director Bibeth Orteza declared. “In fact, part of the film selection process is a two-day pitching program.”

Twelve screenplays will be shortlisted by the selection committee.

“If you’re a first-time writer, and you claim you can direct, you would have to defend this to the committee,” Orteza said. “However, if during the pitching, we discover that you don’t know the difference between a closeup and an extreme closeup, then we will suggest that you work hand in hand with an experienced director.”

A new category, the short film competition, was likewise introduced this year by newly appointed festival managing director Joey Romero.

Seven shorts, which run from 1 to 10 minutes and shot entirely using cellular phones, will carry the theme, “A Slice of Life.”



ToFarm founder Milagros How also announced her intention to produce six “commercial” movies under her newly formed production outfit, Universal Harvester Films.

“These movies will not be related to the TFF because we don’t want the festival to digress from the program,” How pointed out. “The six will be of different genres: rom-com, action, LGBT-related or whatever the masses demand.”

ToFarm founder Milagros How

Deadline for the submission of entries will be on April 20. The seven finalists to be chosen, which will carry the theme “A Tribute to Life: Parating Na,” will be announced on May 23.

Each of them will receive a seed production grant of P1.5 million. The director/producer may solicit additional funds to augment production cost.

The festival will run from Sept. 12 to 18, with the awards night slated on Sept. 15.

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