Stars bat for PH cinema at MMFF 2023 Parade of Stars

Stars bat for PH cinema at MMFF 2023 Parade of Stars

By: - Reporter
/ 12:10 AM December 16, 2023

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With local cinema still reeling from the effects of the pandemic and dealing with competition from streaming, actors of the 2023 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) believe that it’s important, now more than ever, to take part in today’s Parade of the Stars to reconnect with the fans, and, hopefully, persuade them to return to the theaters.

“I was once again given an opportunity to join this very festive occasion in Philippine cinema. And we hope to encourage Filipino moviegoers to go back to the cinemas. At the end of the day, we have to encourage them,” “Family of Two” star Alden Richards said.

“We can’t blame local cinemas if they’re more inclined to show foreign films, because it’s more profitable, business-wise … So, let’s support our own, so we can produce more quality movies,” he pointed out.

Eugene Domingo



“Joining the parade is always heartwarming because you see how welcoming and excited the people are. Somehow, you get this sense that they’re still here to watch Filipino films,” Sharon Cuneta, also of “Family of Two,” said.


That’s why the effort that goes into mounting the MMFF—a two-week period in which Philippine cinemas exclusively show local films—isn’t lost on the actors.

“We’re thankful to the MMDA (Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, the organizer) … It’s such a good feeling to have a festival that gives actors and participants this kind of recognition—na kapag MMFF, sa atin ‘to,” Eugene Domingo of “Becky & Badette” said. Just the same, the stars said they will make sure that, rain or shine, they will enjoy themselves in the glitzy motorcade, which traditionally opens the MMFF.

Now on its 49th edition, the annual show biz event has 10 entries this year: “Family of Two,” “Becky & Badette,” “Rewind,” “Penduko,” “Kampon,” “Broken Hearts Trip,” “Firefly,” “GomBurZa,” “Mallari” and “When I Met You in Tokyo.”

This year’s parade, which is expected to last three hours, will traverse the cities of Caloocan, Malabon, Navotas and Valenzuela. The 8.7-kilometer route will start at the Navotas Centennial Park and end at the Valenzuela People’s Park.

“You get to see your fellow Filipinos who are so excited to see their favorite celebrities. And then, you tell them, ‘Merry Christmas, manood po kayo!’” Eugene said. “It’s hot and tiring, but it’s not every day that you get to do something like this, so keri!”

Matteo Guidicelli, star of the action-fantasy flick “Penduko,” couldn’t help but feel a bit nervous because it’s his first time in the MMFF.


“The parade is something I used to just see on television and in photos. But now, we’re part of it. I will finally get to experience what it’s like tossing T-shirts to the fans!” he said.

“I’m nervous. I don’t want to be overly confident. I’m just looking forward to people seeing our movie and enjoying it,” he added.

Alden Richards


Good to be back

Matteo’s costar, Arron Villaflor, hasn’t taken part in the parade since 2007, so it feels so good, he said, to finally be back.

“I can’t wait to see the fans. It’s heartening to be with them,” he said. “We have been restricted by the pandemic for quite a while, so I hope we can show that things are going back to normal in show biz.”

For Sharon, the parade is also an opportunity to reunite with her show biz friends.

“You get to see your friends, your idols, your favorite stars. It’s exciting for me, too. Of course, it will be hot, but thankfully, it’s a bit cooler in December. You just have to take care of your health,” she said, adding that the parade is a special event that amplifies the Christmas spirit.

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“The excitement is always palpable during the holiday season. If you go out, it’s as if you can touch the Christmas spirit. It’s in the air, as they say. So what more if we have a parade like this?” she said.

TAGS: 2023 MMFF, MMFF, MMFF Parade of Stars

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