A press briefing on the Philippine film industry road map which intends to lay down an economic guide to its sustained growth and development will be held from 10 a.m. to 12 noon on Wednesday, June 20, at Newsdesk Café at the corner of Sct. Madriñan and Sct. Tobias streets in Quezon City.
Five groups which are spearheading efforts to draft a plan to ensure the survival of the dying Philippine film industry will brief the press and other interested individuals and organizations during the event. The stakeholder groups are the Fair Trade Alliance, the Film Academy of the Philippines, the Directors’ Guild of the Philippines, Inc., the Nagkaka-isang Manggagawa ng Pelikulang Pilipino and the Independent Filmmakers’ Cooperative.
The press briefing panel will include Dr. Rene E. Ofreneo, Fair Trade Alliance executive director; Director Carlitos Siguion-Reyna of the DGPI; Leo G. Martinez, FAP director general; and Cong. Erin Tañada of the 4th district of Quezon Province.
The press release issued by the Fair Trade Alliance reads as follows:
Stakeholders have come together to act on the continued decline of the Philippine film industry.
Since the first quarter of this year, various stakeholders of the film industry—the Film Academy of the Philippines, the Directors’ Guild of the Philippines, Inc., the Nagkaka-isang Manggagawa ng Pelikulang Pilipino and the Independent Filmmakers’ Cooperative—sought the assistance of the Fair Trade Alliance, a broad multisectoral coalition of formal and informal labor, industry, agriculture, NGOs and youth pushing for trade and economic reforms. They have been meeting to discuss the state of the film industry. They have identified two major sets of problems—lack of funding support and governance and direction.
Under closer analysis, it becomes evident that the problems of the industry is more than just the lack of technology or the inability of domestic firms to catch up with the global trends. The counry’s economic and political situation greatly affected the film industry and it resulted to slow degradation of Philippine Cinema. The problems of the industry are further heightened by the imposition of taxes. The Philippine industry is one of the highly taxed industries. This means the government is raking in more than they bargained for from the industry that they don’t even consider as one.
The taxes collected from movies are meant to be used to improve the industry so that it would be able to compete by upgrading equipment, conducting trainings and implementing programs aimed at developing the industry and its workers. Taxes collected are also meant to ensure the welfare of movie workers.
Therefore, there is a need to re-assess the industry, review the policies governing the film industry and, most imporant of all, develop an industry plan aimed at reviving and sustaining the growth of the Philippiine movie industry. The Philippine Film Industry Roadmapping is one way of determining the path the industry is taking and identifying the road it needs to take.
Films have implications other than cultural ones. It is important to acknowledge the potentials of the film industry in the economic realm. With the success of India and South Korea, it is apparent that the film industry is indeed worthy of being recognized as a true industry. Given the proper aid, it can grow and bloom into a mature industry capable of giving significant contributions to the national economy. Acknowledging that the film industry can make significant contributions to the national economy is a first step towards the revival of the dying Philippine film industry. Thus, it is of utmost importance that the film induistry be given due recognition not just in the field of arts and culture but also in the field of economics.