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MMFF earnings fall below P1 billion

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Ticket sales during the 2019 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) reached P955 million rom Dec. 25, 2019 to Jan. 7, 2020, but fell 4.5 percent short of the P1 billion target.

Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Danilo Lim said despite the lower gross sales this year, the MMFF was still a success.

“‘Yung nakaraang MMFF natin ay matagumpay kahit na ito ay naapektuhan ng sunod-sunod na lindol na nangyari sa Mindanao at ‘yung bagyo na dumaan sa Visayas and some parts of Luzon (Our past MMFF was a success even if a series of earthquakes and typhoons hit Mindanao, the Visayas and parts of Luzon),” Lim said, citing the calamities as reasons why the 2019 filmfest failed to reach its target and the 2018 MMFF “highest grossing” record of P1.060 billion.

Lim also announced the top four 2019 MMFF official entries based on gross sales receipt although not necessarily in the order they were mentioned: “The Mall, The Merrier” by Barry Gonzales; “Miracle in Cell No. 7” by Nuel Naval; “3pol Trobol: Huli Ka Balbon” by Rodel Nacianceno; and “Mission Unstapabol: The Don Identity” by Mike Tuveria.

MMDA General Manager Jose Arturo “Jojo” Garcia said the MMFF Execom would not release the gross sales per movie and gave each producer the discretion to do so.

Lim said Brillante Mendoza’s “Mindanao,” which won the 2019 MMFF Best Picture Award, would be endorsed to the international film festival.

“By the way, bilang incentive sa ‘yung magagandang pelikula gaya nung nanalo na (to the beautiful movies like the one that won) Best Picture i-sponsor natin yan sa mga prestigious na mga international film festivals (As an incentive to the winning movies like the one which one Best Picture, we will sponsor them in international film festivals),” Lim said.

Lim also formally concluded the 2019 MMFF and officially launched the first ever 2020 Metro Manila Summer Film Festival (MMSFF), which will be from April 11 to 21.

The MMSFF, which was initiated by Sen. Christoper Lawrence “Bong” Go, is the second edition of the MMFF to further promote the growth and development of the local film industry.

Lim said the MMFF Execom extended the deadline for submission of finished film entries for the full-length category to February 15 from January 31.

Meanwhile, the Student Short Film Competition for the MMSFF will be based on finished film submissions only and the deadline is on February 28.

“The festival theme will be ‘Pinoy Pride,’” said Garcia.


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