MMFF slow ticket sales affect beneficiaries most

BENEFICIARIES of the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) will most probably be affected by this year’s “struggling” film sales, according to award-winning filmmaker Charliebebs Gohetia.

During the first Art Talk meeting for the year on Tuesday, January 3, at Park Inn by the Radisson, Gohetia said in comparison with previous year’s entries to the MMFF, this year’s entries did not appear as attractive to the masses.

He added this does not only affect the people behind the films but also the beneficiaries that yearly benefit from the amusement taxes of the festival.

One of the beneficiaries is the Movie Workers Welfare Foundation, Inc. (Mowelfund), "a non-stock non-profit social welfare, educational, and industry development foundation organized and established in 1974" under the initiative of former San Juan Mayor and President of the Philippine Motion Picture Producers Association (PMPPA) Joseph Estrada.

Mowelfund’s objective is to “provide aid to movie workers in times of sickness, disability, accident, and death.”

Other groups that benefit from the MMFF amusement taxes are the Film Academy of the Philippines, Motion Picture Anti-Film Piracy Council, Optical Media Board, and the Film Development Council of the Philippines.

Boots Anson-Roa, member of the MMFF executive committee, previously stated that only 10 percent of the amusement taxes from the theatres will be divided among the beneficiaries.

Gohetia said that one of the reasons this year’s MMFF sales were not as good as in past festivals is because of the prevailing belief that indie films are for the high-browed with film plots that are difficult to understand, thus intimidating the masses.

But, he said, most of the entries, despite being independently produced, were mainstream films tackling mainstream social issues.

Gohetia is the director of the 2015 movie “I Love You. Thank You” shot in Thailand starring Joross Gamboa, Prince Stefan, CJ Reyes, and Thai actor Ae Pattawaran.


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