Tokyo Festival To Celebrate Filipino Cinema| MENAFN.COM

Saturday, 10 December 2022 01:44 GMT

Tokyo Festival To Celebrate Filipino Cinema

(MENAFN- Arab Times) The Tokyo International Film Festival will this year organize a special section on the films of Filipino director Brillante Mendoza in particular, and the films of the Philippines in general. Mendoza's latest film "Taklub" has its premiere this week in Cannes' Un Certain Regard.

The section is the second year that Tokyo has organized its 'Crosscut Asia' showcase, after its launch year focused on Thai cinema. The initiative is the joint effort of the Japan Foundation Asia Center and the Tokyo Festival (Oct 22-31, 2015).

Organizers calculate that Filipino cinema is currently in a third golden age, after two earlier periods of glory, one in the early 1950s and, a second, in the 1970s and 1980s. The latter was exemplified by angry indie auteurs including Lino Brocka, Ishmael Bernal, and Kidlat Tahimik.

"Now, in the 21st-century era of digital film making, young independent creators are appearing in droves, gaining worldwide attention through the Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival and other indie venues," say the Crosscut organizers. They reckon that the third golden age, typified by Mendoza and Lav Dias, began in 2005.

"The Tokyo International Film Festival is a great occasion for everyone as it showcases not only movies from the Philippines but variety of works from around the globe that are not available at everyday cinemas. I hope everyone will have a chance to appreciate these works," said Mendoza in a prepared statement.

Indian record-breaking film "PK" is set for a major release in China later this month. The Disney-backed film grossed $97 million on its release in India and Indian diaspora markets in late 2014.

Wang Baoqiang ("Lost in Thailand," "Personal Tailor") voices the lead character, played by Aamir Khan, in what is believed to be the first dubbed version of an Indian movie recently released in China.

The film had a gala premiere in Shanghai (May 13) and will move to wide release with 3,500 venues next Friday (May 22). Distribution is by China Film Group, the state-owned enterprise that also releases the major Hollywood import titles.

The release underlines a growing thaw in cultural relations between the two Asian neighbors, initiated by China's President Xi Jinping last year. In time for Chinese New Year in February, Shah Rukh Khan-starring caper movie "Happy New Year" was given a release by M1905, a subsidiary of China Central Television. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is currently on an official visit to China this week. The film was produced by Vinod Chopra Films and Rajkumar Hirani Films in association UTV Motion Pictures. Disney India is in Cannes selling titles including "PK" and Remo d'Souza's upcoming "Any Body Can Dance 2."

Bollywood major Eros Intl. and China Film Corp will co-produce "Monk Xuan Zang."

The film may be the first to be made using a bilateral co-production agreement between the two giant neighbors, which have until recently had only minimal film industry contact.

The movie is based on the life of a Chinese monk and will star Chinese actor Huang Xiaoming. It will be directed by China's Huo Jianq. Details of budget, other casting and timing were not available.

The deal was announced in Beijing by CFC head La Peikang; Kumar Ahuja, president, business development for Eros Intl. Media; and Tong Gang, vice minister for China's State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television. It comes at a moment when India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi is on a visit to the Chinese capital.

Along with next week's release of Disney India's record-breaking film "PK" and last year's treaty signing, the production underlines a growing thaw in diplomatic and cultural relations between the countries. The warming trend was initiated by China's President Xi Jinping last year, in response to Modi's election.

Lured by the prospect of a hit in the world's two most populous nations, numerous other China-India projects have been announced. But few have yet gone ahead.

The biggest joint production in recent years was "From Chandni Chowk to China," a 2009 action comedy produced by Ramesh Sippy for Warner Bros that was a major flop. It was directed by Nikhil Advani and starred Akshay Kumar, Deepika Padukone and Gordon Liu. Others that remain on the drawing board include a project by Wong Kar-wai, adventure "Gold Struck" and "Kung Fu Yoga," to be directed by Stanley Tong and produced by China's Shinework Media and Taihe Entertainment and India's Viacom 18.

The names of Shah Rukh Khan and Jackie Chan have frequently been discussed in media reports as being part of the films, but neither superstar appears firmly attached to any of the projects.

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