The Philippines has one of the oldest film industries in Southeast Asia, with a century-long history of producing films that have been critically acclaimed around the world. This September, the country celebrates its first Philippine Film Industry Month in style with a series of screenings, workshops, competitions, and other online events happening throughout the month.
Officially declared in February 2021, Filipino Film Industry Month aims to celebrate the country’s achievements in film and filmmaking, as well as recognize the industry’s contribution to Filipino society. Spearheaded by the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP), the inaugural festivities honor veteran contributions to the local film industry, while encouraging present and future creators to hone and showcase their craft.
In celebration, here’s a list of online film screenings you can watch on the FDCP Channel throughout the month—all for free!
From September 01 to 30, FDCP is holding “From The Archives: Pamanang Pelikula”, an initiative where eight classic Filipino films will be available to stream on demand. The films—including works from acclaimed directors Ishmael Bernal, Marilou Diaz-Abaya, and Kidlat Tahimik—were digitally restored by the Philippine Film Archive.
The 5th Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino is also back for its second online run, happening from September 17 to 26. Aside from debuting new short and feature films by up-and-coming filmmakers from across the country, a series of talkbacks from participating creators will also be held on the annual festival’s Facebook page.
Finally, FDCP is set to launch “50 Years / 50 Films” on September 25; a film retrospective on the work of acclaimed director Elwood “El Maestro” Perez, one of the last living master Filipino filmmakers from the 1970s. Screenings of his best films—including Esoterika: Manila and Bilangin ang Bituin sa Langit—will be held from September 25 to 30.
Want to read more about the local film industry? We’ve got you covered: here’s a list of some of our best interviews and features with our friends in the world of Filipino film.
Recreating Goyo’s Historic Battles
Journeying Through the Islands
In Defiance of the Indie Film
Philippine Cinema Through the Eyes of Ricky Lee