Feb 14

Director-General Leo G. Martinez of the Film Academy of the Philippines attended a joint public hearing of four senate committees, including public information and mass media, on Thursday, Feb. 13, regarding film tourism, the use of closed caption and sign language for mass media and the declaration of November 23 as Press Freedom Day.

Seven proposed bills were discussed during the hearing. These were:

Senate Bill 78 (Sen. Grace Poe), an act promoting film tourism in the Philippines, marketing the industry globally and providing new employment opportunities in the sector, and for other purposes.

Senate Bill 271 (Sen. Ramon Bong Revilla Jr.), an act requiring all owners of television networks or stations and producers of television news programs to have their news programs broadcast with closed-caption and providing penalties for violation thereof.

Senate Bill 349 (Sen. Loren Legarda), an act requiring all franchise holders or operators of television stations, producers of television programs, home video programs and motion pictures to broadcast or present their programs and films with closed-caption and providing penalites for violation thereof.

Senate Bill 1656 (Sen. Grace Poe), an act to require all franchise holders or operators of television stations and producers of television programs to broadcast or present their programs with closed captions, and for other purposes.

Senate Bill 1936 (Sen. Joseph Victor Ejercito), an act requiring the use of Filipino sign language insets for local news programs, amending for the purpose Section 22 of Republic Act No. 7277, as amended, otherwise known as the Magna Carta for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs).

Senate Bill 2117 (Sen. Paolo Benigno Bam A. Aquino IV), an act requiring the use of Filipino sign language insets for local news programs, amending for the purpose Section 22 of Republic Act No. 7277, as amended, otherwise known as the Magna Carta for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs).

Senate Bill 2044 (Sen. Grace Poe), an act declaring November 23 of every year as “Philippine Press Freedom Day”.

Senate Bill 78, which will be known as Philippines Film Tourism Act of 2013, intends to make film tourism a new investment priority by making the country a location shooting or filming area for various media activities, as well as encouraging filmmakers and artists to participate in foreign productions.

The bill will create an inter-agency Committee on Film Tourism to be jointly chaired by the Department of Tourism secretary and the Film Development Council of the Philippines chairman. This committee shall formulate a Com-prehensive Plan detailing an inventory of film tourism sites in the country, areas for improvement, sectors to be tapped and partnerships, marketing strategies both local and international, the feasibility of establishing a Film Museum, reward and incentive system, and other aspects combining tourism and film.

The bill also provides that in case a Filipino film is considered in competition, nominated for excellence or cinema prizes, or to be exhibited in recognition of its achievement in arts in a recognized international film festival, its production team, including but not limited to its director, producer, writer and actors shall be provided full government support to attend the said festival.

(Read the explanatory note of Sen. Grace Poe to the Film Tourism bill reprinted in this website)


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