by Stefano Ortiz
In a successful night of cultural exchange, Cinematheque Centre Manila saw an overflow of people attending Japan Film Week 2020’s Premiere Night, held by the Cinematheque as a collaboration between the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) and Japan Foundation in Manila.
Walk-in lines started as early as two hours before the official screening of Weathering With You (Dir. Shinkai Makoto, 2019). Prior to the 7 pm screening, FDCP served food and drinks at a cinematheque hall decked out with an art installation that featured paper crane origami and oil-paper umbrellas installed for the Japan Film Week reception night. At 6:30 the audience entered the theater for the screening and a brief opening night ceremony.
Distribution and Exhibition Division Lead Anna Abalahin, Deputy Chief of Mission at Philippine Embassy Tokyo Eduardo Martin, Film Philippines Executive Director David Fabros, Japan Foundation Manila Director Hiroaki Uesugi, Japan Foundation Program Coordinator Kanami Namiki, Japan Foundation Manila Program Officer Roland Samson
Film Philippines Executive Director David Fabros kicked off the night by acknowledging the notable members of the audience and giving welcoming remarks where he discussed the partnership between FDCP and the Japan Foundation in Manila. “We in the FDCP are very fortunate to partner with the Japan Foundation in Manila in supporting the goal of cultural exchange through the medium of film” Fabros said.
He added that this particular film series is significant, he added, because “Japan Film Week has continuously been one of the most sought after film festivals in [FDCP] cinematheques.”
Film Philippines Executive Director David Fabros
Fabros concluded his remarks discussing the role of cinema in cultural exchange: “The exposure of our audiences to the creative output of Japanese filmmakers has opened their eyes on the way of life of the Japanese people. This year, we have received overflowing support from the Filipino audiences in the screening of the films in Cinematheque Davao. And we expect that from Cinematheque Manila and Iloilo as well” he said.
Japan Foundation Manila Director Hiroaki Uesugi gave opening remarks following Fabros. He greeted the audience in Tagalog and discussed the collaboration between the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) and Japan Foundation Manila for Japan Film Week as significant for cultural exchange between Japanese and Filipino culture.
Focusing on the role of FDCP and Japan Foundation’s partnership for the work of cultural exchange, Uesugi said, “The impact of films is tremendous...together with FDCP we have long been nurturing a partnership, to bring more quality events in Manila and other cities in the Philippines.”
Japan Foundation Manila Director Hiroaki Uesugi
For his part, Uesugi also spoke of his enjoyment of Filipino films. Among his favorites, Uesugi said, was Brillante Mendoza’s Mindanao, which was among the eight Filipino films that recently screened at the Tokyo International Film Festival this past October.
Fresh from Berlin and having just arrived at Manila’s NAIA Airport, FDCP Chairperson and CEO Liza Diño made sure to find time to attend Japan Film Week premiere night. Speaking of the event, she thanked the attendance of Director Uesugi and his team “for always bringing us a beautiful curation of Japanese films for our local audiences each year.”
Chair Diño also thanked FDCP staff who organized the event saying “I want to show my support to my FDCP team who worked so hard to create this beautiful Art installation setup just for this event.”
FDCP Chairperson and CEO Liza Diño with Japan Foundation Manila Director Hiroaki Uesugi and FDCP Staff
Due to the strong demand for Japanese Film screenings in the Philippines, the Japan Foundation Manila partnered with FDCP in 2018 and founded Japan Film Week as an addition to the annual Eigasai Japan Film Festival.
The Cinematheque Centre saw huge crowds for Japan Film Week
This year, Japan Film Week scheduled seven (7) films of different genres for screening. These films were: Weathering With You, Maquiao: When the Promised Flower Blooms, Life Goes On, Fireworks, Should We See it From the Side or the Bottom?, Dad’s Lunch Box, Okko’s Inn, and The Tears of Malumpati.
The film week continues screening to February 29.
March 11, 2020
February 28, 2020
February 21, 2020
February 21, 2020