“Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson
A country’s cinema is a symbol of identity which represents the whole populace’ thriving potentials; its aspirations and its desire to institute global connections. The movie industry is a voice declaring that somewhere in this planet, are artistically conscious creatures armed with endowments set to participate within human race’s common interests. It is my honour to share these significant victories of the Philippine film industry.
The Philippine cinematic industry whether they are independently produced continuously reaps distinctive international citations drawing the Filipino nation’s artistry in the world map. These brilliant Filipino people’s potentials in the motion picture industry vary from screenplay writing, film editing, best film acting, film making, directing to cinematography gaining recognitions in the international race. These are manifested by the entries of Filipino films that are highly regarded in international competitions as results of rigorous screening by worldwide acclaimed connoisseurs in the field of motion pictures as well as in the performing arts.
In 2008, the 58th Berlin Film Festival featured six independent Filipino films. Consequently, many Filipinos reaped awards. This is a relentless sign that the modern day evolution of the Philippine movies from national isolation to worldwide acknowledgement thrives intensified by the emergence of independent film makers that add to set records of the country’s cinema into worldwide credits marking the 21st century Filipino film industry’s contemporary age. It was the same year, when Brilliant Mendoza’s Tirador received a Caligari Award, an honor bestowed to innovative films projecting worthy themes. In 2009, Jaclyn Jose won the best supporting performer in a female role in the Asian Film Award for her part in Serbis.
Earlier in 2013, the Philippines dominated the 1st ASEAN International Film Festival. The winning categories proclaimed were Best Male Performer bagged by Bugoy Carino, in the movie, Alagwa. The Best Supporting Performance by a Female Actor is the veteran Anita Linda while Alessandra de Rossi received the Best Performance by a Female Actor under the same movie, Sta. Nina which also bestowed the Best Director Award to Emmanuel Quindo Palo for his Best Picture in a drama category. In addition, The Kidnappers of Ronnie Lazaro received the Best Picture in a comedy category. On March 2013, veteran actor Eddie Garcia won the Best Performance by a Male Actor for his outstanding act in Bwakaw during the 7th Asian Film Awards held in Hong Kong. On July 2013, Joel Torre was privileged for the Best Actor recognition for his spectacular performance in the film, OTJ (On the Job) at the 17th Puchon International Film Festival held in South Korea. In the film, OTJ (On the Job) alongside with the major awards, the film too got the Jury’s Choice Prize. On September 2013, Filipino Child Star Barbara Miguel was praised with Female Performer Award for her portrayal in Nuwebe at the Harlem International Film Festival held in New York City.
In 2014, Mikhail Red’s “Rekorder” earned the Excellent Young Director Award in the Gwangju International Film Festival in Gwangju, South Korea.It was also earlier on September 2014 when this film offered the Best Male Performance by an Actor award to Allen Dizon at the 9th Harlem International Film Festival in New York City. This lucky year also bestowed Vilma Santos the Best Performance by a Female Actor credit for her role in Ekstra during the Dhaka International Film Festival held in Bangladesh. On October 2014, the New York Film Festival gave Best Actor recognition to Jake Cuenca for his part in Mulat and,Best Actress Appreciation to Liza Diño for her character in ‘In Nomine Matris’ in Manhattan, NYC. Diane Ventura, became the Best Director Award for the same movie. On November 2014, the Philippine House of Representative pleased writer and director Jason Paul Laxamana whose film, Magkakabaung won the Best Asian Film Award for the Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC) at the 3rd Hanoi International Film Festival in Vietnam. Allen Dizon, too attained the Best Actor Award for this film.
On February 2015, Aiko Melendez collected the Best Performance by a Female Role in the Foreign Language Film category during the 7th International Filmmaker Festival of World Cinema in London, England. On February 2015, Filipino independent film Director Francis Xavier Pasion acquired the Grand Prize Award at the 15th Tokyo Filmex festival for his work, Bwaya in Japan. March 2015 was the moment for Richard Gomez to grab the Best Actor honor for his film, The Janitor at the 35th Oporto International Film Festival in Portugal. By April 2015’s, Asian International Film Festival in Malaysia, Filipino awardees captured the scene. The Best director was offered to Joseph Laban for his movie, Nuwebe while the Best Actress went to Cherie Gil for the movie, Sonata. Best Editing was bestowed to Benjamin Tolentino for the film, Bendor. The ASEAN Spirit Award went to the film, Purok 7.It was also on May 15, 2015 that the film of Perci Intalan, Dementia was awarded three recognitions at the Saint-Tropez International Film Festival in France for it captured the Best Foreign Language Film, Best Actress and Best Supporting Actor in a Foreign Film for Nora Aunor and Emilio Garcia, respectively. Also, on May 16, 2015, Roderick Cabrido’s “Children’s Show” received the grand prize in the Asia-Pacific Young Filmmakers Awards at the Gwangju International Film Festival set in South Korea. Additionally, it can be recalled that this movie aside from its successes in May this year formerly attained other significant international awards last year in varied categories which were Special Jury Prize in the Orient Express Section of the Oporto International Film Festival in Portugal, Special Jury Prize, Grand Jury Award for Best Screenplay and Emerging Filmmaker Award at the Fantastic Cinema Festival of the Film Society of Little Rock in Arkansas.
World Premieres Film Festival Philippines was celebrated on June 29, 2015 known currently as the most prestigious international film festival in the Philippines, came out with the Best Picture and a first 1st Prize credit entitled, Ang Kubo Sa Kawayanan, a film directed by Alvin Yapan. On July 11, 2015, Best Feature Film, Mana by director Gabby Fernandez and Best Actress Cherie Gil were achieved, respectively at the Madrid International Film Festival in Spain. Followed by more winnings on September 2015 when Philippine film artists accomplished two prizes at the Guam International Film Festival. Buboy Villar bagged the Best Achievement in Acting in the movie directed by Paul Soriano, Kid Kulafu. Moreover, the romantic comedy category, That Thing Called Tadhana by Antoinette Jadaone was conferred the Best Narrative Motion Picture. Currently, on May 22, 2016 old-timer actor Jaclyn Jose triumphantly received the Best Actor prize during the 69th Cannes Film Festival for her enactment in the film, “Ma’ Rosa,” held in Cannes, France.
These winnings reveal that Filipinos in the Philippine cinema have their own right time to nationally and internationally prove their worthy crafts in almost all areas of the film making industry. Though these winning moments of Filipino performers are not exhaustive list to present its entirety, these reflect that indeed, the Philippine cinema has extended a meritorious stage of film making. Performers created milestones in the history of Philippine motion pictures through the international credits they as praiseworthy artists have garnered, not to mention their diverse nominations in varied categories defeating or beaten by other entries. Earlier than what are to be mentioned here, there were film artists who represented the Philippines as winners in different sorts from award-giving bodies overseas. It is best to disclose the latest as triggering factors to remind us of the past triumphs which add to the showcasing of thriving quality works in the Philippine cinema.