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The sad box-office results of MMFF 2020

AS expected, the box-office results of the ongoing Metro Manila Filmfest online fail in comparison to the former film festivals held in actual theaters. This is not surprising since the general populace is not really that tech savvy to quickly adapt to the new way of watching movies online, specially in the provinces where they don’t even have wi-fi.

Also, like what we’ve said before, Pinoy viewers are still hesitant when it comes to paying for what they’ll watch, since they’d rather access content they can watch for free on line on Youtube or downloadable from pirates.

We got it from someone very trustworthy that business on Upstream.ph is really slack. On the third day of the festival, their total earnings is only P11 million! That’s way, way down below from grosses in past filmfests where they have already earned P200 million just by the third day of the festival.

And mind you, one half of the P11 million was earned only by the best picture winner, “Fan Girl”. Number 2 is “Mang Kepweng”. Number 3 is “Boy Foretold by the Stars”. Number 4 is “Pakboys: Takusa”. Number 5 is “The Missing” and Number 6 is “Magikland”.

The last four is shared by drama films “Isa Pang Bahaghari”, “Tagpuan”, “Coming Home” and “Suarez: The Healing Priest”. Looks like, online viewers really avoided drama films.

“Fan Girl” got a lot of hype because of the publicity that leading man Paulo Avelino had a frontal nudity scene, but it turns out that his organ showed on screen was just prosthetic, just like that of Mark Wahlberg in “Boogie Nights”. Now that the film won several awards, including the lead acting awards, we have no doubt that more viewers from the bigger cities will be enticed to watch it.

Yearender Part 3: The Year’s Controversies, Who Said a Final Goodbye

ISSUES involving shame and scandal in the family, personified in the past by the Barretto family, is represented this year by Pia Wurtzbach whose sister Sarah denounced her and their mom Cheryl Tyndall on social media for various accusations, but they dismissed it as a case of post-partum syndrome on the part of Sarah.

The show of Raffy Tulfo gave ringside seat to viewers fond of such scandalous controversies. Super Tekla was denounced by his partner Michelle, the mom of his child, for sexual abuse, among others. But Super Tekla was vindicated when Tulfo himself found out Michelle was lying to him.

The mother and grandmother of Charice Pempengco aka Jake Zyrus also harangued each other in Tulfo’s show. But viewers are not that really interested anymore so the issue quickly faded away. Janella Salvador was also denounced in the same show by her former production assistant, but Janella did not make patol, so it just went away.

An unsavory news this year is about Claudine Barretto suing ex-husband Raymart Santiago for not giving financial support to their two kids for two years now. Raymart, in turn, has found a new romance in Jodi Sta. Maria.

Jiro Manio is arrested for stabbing someone who bullied him in Marikina.

Kim Chiu’s van was shot by unknown assailants. She later made a booboo with her “bawal lumabas” statement on TV but she turned it around to her favor. She recorded a song with that title and later made a series also titled “Bawal Lumabas”.

There was a clash involving Kris Aquino versus Cristy Fermin when Kris rejected Mr. Fu to be part of the talk show they’ll do for Puregold. Cristy and Mr. Fu are together in the online show, “Take It Per Minute”, with Lolit Solis but Kris said she doesn’t know him so Cristy defended Mr. Fu.

G Toengi slammed Arnell Ignacio, an avowed Duterte supporter who’s been appointed as AVP for Pagcor, for calling celebrities airheads or dumb after Angelica Panganiban called the attention of government officials who are sleeping on their jobs while a typhoon was going on.

The first Miss Universe Philippines was held this year (the franchise used to belong to Bb. Pilipinas Charities) and it became controversial when a contestant, Sandra Lemonon, threatened to reveal some hanky-panky over the winning of title-holder Rabiya Mateo. But she proved to be all bark and no bite. Her much awaited revelations never came.

Star Cinema decided to shelve their ill-fated “Darna” project, which was supposed to be played by Angel Locsin then Liza Soberano, who both bowed out due to health reasons, and replaced by Jane de Leon. The director also changed from Erik Matti to Jerrold Tarog. But Jane is still doing it as a TV series in 2021 and she’s also been tapped to replace Yassi Pressman as leading lady in the long-running “Ang Probinsyano”.

The corona lockdown was initially declared on March 15 and it’s been extended every month. Looks like it will continue to haunt us in 2021. It truly disrupted our lives, including the world of entertainment. Angel Locsin leads the list of celebrities who helped out during the corona crisis, distributing masks, PPEs and food to the frontliners helping out in treating corona patients.

Many concerts, plays and events were cancelled. Theaters were closed down. There was no taping or shooting allowed until months later when they had what they call in lock taping that maintains strict health protocols. Christopher de Leon was the first celebrity to admit he’s positive. Then Iza Calzado, Sylvia Sanchez and husband, Michael V, Bong Revilla, Howie Severino, Eat Bulaga comedians Allan K and Wally Bayola, Sylvia Sanchez and husband Art Atayde, Kakai Bautista, Sen. Miguel Zubiri and Sen. Koko Pimentel who became controversial for going to the Makati Medical Center without a mask when he knows he’s already positive with the virus.

In this day and age when internet culture seems to indicate that people prefer to spend more time watching streaming shows on social media rather than on TV or an actual moviehouse, lots of celebrities choose to go online with their own Youtube channel or vlog. Ivana Alawi (with her showing her sexy figure in various states of deshabille) and Alex Gonzaga (doing all sorts of pranks and comic situations) are the topnotchers with more than 10 million subscribers each. Everybody who is anybody is now a vlogger or youtuber.

The lockdown also saw the rise of BL or Boys Love series online, spearheaded by “Gameboys” from IdeaFirst starring Kokoy de Santos and Elijah Canlas. Kokoy is considered as the pandemic’s breakout star as he became very popular on social media, did another online BL series, “Oh Mando”, and now stars in a romcom on a free channel, TV5’s “Stay-In Love,” this time with a female co-star, Maris Racal.

The Iglesia ni Cristo channel, NET 25, beefs up its entertainment programs starting with its own soap, “Ang Daigdig Ko’y Ikaw” and noontime show, “Happy Time”.

Many stars took military courses to be official reservists, including Dingdong Dantes, Rocco Nacino, Winwyn Marquez, Arci Munoz and JM de Guzman.

Many showbiz denizens bid us a final goodbye in 2020, including TV broadcaster Twink Macaraeg, journalists Ninez Cacho Olivarez and Domini Torevillas, former TV host Leila Benitez, radio-TV host and former senator Eddie Ilarde, former actress Ruby Regala, Dennis Garcia of the Hotdog band, Joey Bautista of the Mulatto band, Slapshock band frontman Jamir Garcia, singer-songwriter April Boy Regino; movie writers Nene Riego, KC Guerrero, Letty Celi, Alex Datu and Ishko Lopez; actors Ramon Revilla Sr., Anita Linda, Lilia Dizon, Mila del Sol, Menggie Cobarrubias, Liberty Ilagan, Sonny Parsons of Hagibis, Robert Miller, Flor Salanga, and Mark Joseph; directors Peque Gallaga, Cloyd Robinson and Freddie Santos; transgender singer Lady Valerie, scriptwriter Manny Buising, comedian Kim Idol, producer Marichu Vera Perez-Maceda, former Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim whose life was filmed several times, former Sen. Sonny Alvarez, celebrity fortune-teller Madame Auring.

Let’s all say a prayer for the repose of their souls. And let’s all pray that the New Year 2021 will truly be a safer and more peaceful year for all of us. Happy New Year to all!

Publication Source :    People's Journal
Mario Bautista
Former member: Manunuri ng Pelikulang Pilipino (Urian)