The Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) roles out the red carpet for this year’s honorees at Film Ambassadors’ Night (FAN), held last night at Maybank Performing Arts in BGC, Taguig City.
This year, FDCP recognized 63 honorees as ‘Film Ambassadors.’ The honorees consist of the many Filipino film industry artists, filmmakers, and films across genres and formats that received awards in film festivals abroad.
This year’s FAN honorees comprise of seven categories, namely: short films, TV awards, technical & creative awards, actors, full-length films, special citations, and A-Listers. This last category, which celebrates those who have won awards in the most prestigious “A-List” international film festivals around the world, headlines the honorees. These “A-List” film festivals include the big three: Cannes, Venice, and Berlin, as well as a select number of major festivals around the globe according to the list of FIAPF.
This year’s A-listers include Brillante Mendoza’s Mindanao, winning Best Narrative Film, Judy Ann Santos as Best Actress in the Cairo International Film Festival in Egypt, Jun Robles Lana for winning best director in his film Kalel, 15, in the 2019 Tallinn Blacknights International Film Festival and the documentary film Aswang, directed by Alyx Ayn Arumpac which won the Fipresci Prize in International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA), the most prestigious film festival in the field of documentary filmmaking. Raymund Ribay Guttierez’s film Verdict, the official Philippine entry to this year’s Oscars holds the highest award our country has achieved this year, having claimed the Special Jury Prize in the Orizzonti section of the Venice International Film Festival last 2019.
Other honorary ‘Film Ambassadors’ included Maja Salvador for her ‘Best Actress’ performance in Wildflower, Bea Alonzo for her ‘Asian Stars Up Next Award,’ and the critically-acclaimed, multi-award-winning films Signal Rock (dir. Chito Rono) and Balangiga: Howling Wilderness (dir. Khavn Dela Cruz). The late Kristoffer King received posthumous honors for his role in Kristo as well.
The late veteran actors Eddie Garcia and Tony Mabesa, who starred in Joel Lamangan’s award-winning Rainbow’s Sunset, received posthumous honors during the Film Ambassador’s Night. Adding to their already illustrious careers, both actors tied in the “Best Actor” category during the 52nd Worldfest Houston International Film Festival and were part of the “Best Ensemble Cast” victory in New York’s International Film Festival 2019 alongside the rest of Rainbow’s Sunset’s lead cast.
“ These ‘Film Ambassadors’ display the diversity and the wide spectrum of our national film industry. They exemplify the best that Philippine cinema has to offer, and as its cream of the crop they promote Philippine cinema internationally, therefore empowering our local film industry and strengthening our cultural heritage.” FDCP Chair Liza Dino said.
The new honorees will join the over 200 filmmakers and other members of the film industry who have been recognized by FDCP for their success in the international arena since the event’s inaugural night in 2017. Past honorees have featured and covered the various spheres of Philippine cinema, from blockbuster films such as The Hows of Us starring Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla to indie filmmakers such as Lav Diaz and Kidlat Tahimik.
FDCP’s Fourth Annual Film Ambassadors’ night kicks-off an eventful year for the agency as it leads the celebration of Sine Sandaan, the centennial year commemoration of Philippine cinema.
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