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Lacuna, Servo grace Manila Filmfest premiere, invite public to patronize entry films

Manila Film Festival 2024
Mayor Honey Lacuna, Vice Mayor Yul Servo and DTCAM chief Charlie Dungo spearheaded the red carpet premiere of the 'The Manila Film Festival' at the historic Metropolitan Theater on Tuesday evening. (JERRY S. TAN)

MANILA Mayor Honey Lacuna and Vice Mayor Yul Servo graced the red carpet premiere of the city’s ‘The Manila Film Festival’ held at the iconic Metropolitan Theater on Tuesday night and are now inviting the public to patronize the cinema screening of the 12 short films that are being featured by the festival.

In her speech, the mayor cited the event as a “realization of the creative and artistic minds of our young students who I know, will be the future of the Philippine cinema.”

Lacuna explained that from 100 entries submitted by student filmmakers nationwide, the elite screening committee selected eight and that from that number, “we ensure that they will receive sufficient support from the city government as they have undergone a series of workshops to guarantee that these young filmmakers’ creative juices will come out and give us the best films they can produce.”

She said that the TMFF has shown great influence on how people look at Manila as the films highlight the city’s culture, places and people.

The short films chosen characterize Manila as the “City of Infinite Possibilities and a Thousand Tales”. Aside from our natural charm as a place rich in history, we are also the melting pot of Philippine Arts and Culture making us the rightful venue of a festival representing the aspirations and dreams of our Filipinos. These official entries artistically represent the multitude of life experiences we had and how the city left an indelible mark on us. The films also display the students’ craftsmanship and the capability to inject relevant issues of society that would simulate one’s social consciousness,” said Lacuna.

“These motion pictures likewise possess the entertainment value that we also seek as we excitingly watch each and every scene. These stories of laughter, struggles, triumphs, love, and even grief will pierce our hearts and emotions. So let us all sit back, relax, and be hooked on these films. Our 453rd Araw Ng Maynila celebrations will never be complete without these cultural treats for our Manileños in particular, and Filipinos in general,” the mayor added.

TMFF 2024, according to Lacuna, will be the city government’s follow-through as Manila aims forward to achieve the ‘Magnificent Manila‘ that each Manilan deserves.

“We will utilize this festival as our potent tool to show the world our uniqueness, creativity, and resilience. That despite of the modern-day challenges of an urban milieu, we will continue to live as the country’s creative hub as we make waves toward progress and development,” Lacuna said.

Manila Film Festival 2024
Mayor Honey Lacuna and Vice Mayor Yul Servo strike a pose at the photo booth before the start of the program for the premiere night of the ‘Tne Manila Film Festival.’ (JERRY S. TAN)

For his part, Servo said: ;”Bilang kapitolyo ng bansa, atin pong sinisikap na panatilihing buhay at patuloy na pagyamanin ang kasaysayan, sining, kultura at tradisyon sa ating minamahal na lungsod. Alinsunod dito, sinisikap nating ibalik ang mga programa at proyektong naglalayong pausbungin ang talento ng ating mga Kabataan.”

“Sa atin pong walong finalists, palakpakan po ninyo ang inyong mga sarili… maging proud kayo sa inyong mga sarili dahil tunay na hindi biro ang paggawa ng isang pelikula— mula sa pag-iisip ng kwento pagsusulat, hanggang sa pagsasagawa nito,” he added.

Servo also recounted that the Manila Film Festival was started by then Mayor Antonio Villegas in the 1960s and was discontinued and in 1994, it was revived by the late Mayor Alfredo S. Lim and was graced by huge personalities in the film industry.

Last year, through the support and guidance of Mayor Honey Lacuna, in cooperation with the Department of Tourism, Culture and the Arts-Manila or DTCAM under its director Charlie Dungo, the Manila Film Festival was fully revived, he said.

Eight entries from student filmmakers and four short films from renowned directors were shown at the iconic Metropolitan Theater for ‘the The Manila Film Festival Red Carpet Premiere’ on Tuesday, June 4.

Dungo said the chosen films will be shown from at the Robinson’s Manila Movieworld and the Robinson’s Magnolia Movieworld from June 5 to June 11, 2024.

The TMFF Awards Night will be held on June 11, 2024 at the Bulwagang Villegas of the Manila City Hall.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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