Tuesday, January 27, 2009

News from Concerto in Cebu

We just learned about the Cebu tax issue on FDCP graded films. Other filmmakers should take note.

We truly learning a lot about independent film producing here in the Philippines. Its challenging :-)

Cebu Daily News

No automatic tax cut for ‘Concerto’ movie

1/23/09 By Marian Z. Codilla, Reporter
A PRODUCER of critically acclaimed movie “Concerto: Davao War Diary” has discovered that the Cebu City government does not follow a national law that grants tax exemptions for profits from top-quality films

Cebu City Administrator Francisco Fernandez confirmed that City Hall typically does not implement Republic Act 9167 because the city government doubts the law’s constitutionality.
“Here in Cebu (City), we give exemptions based on the decision of the Cebu City Council. This is a case-to-case basis. We find the law violates the constitution. That is why we are not implementing it,” Fernandez said.
R.A. 9167 is the act that created the Film Development Council of the Philippines, which is tasked to review and grade films based on their quality.
The law grants an amusement tax reward for films graded “A” or “B” by the film council’s Cinema Evaluation Board. Grade A films are awarded a 100-percent exemption from the amusement tax, while grade B films enjoy a 65-percent discount on the tax.
Viking Logarta, Cebuano consulting producer of the independent film “Concerto” said he was disheartened when the film’s producers discovered that the city did not automatically grant a full tax exemption, considering the film was given grade A status by the Film Development Council of the Philippines.
“The Cebu City government – the only one in the whole country – has questioned the constitutionality of R.A. 9167 and has chosen to ignore the law in the meantime,” Logarta said.
Fernandez advised Logarta to write a letter to the City Council so that a full tax exemption for the film could be discussed in the council’s next session on Wednesday.

Fernandez said it was likely that the producers of Concerto would be granted a full exemption since the film qualifies under the conditions set by the city, including conditions that at least one producer of the film must be Cebuano, and that the film must be educational.
Fernandez said producers of other well-graded films also have to convince the City Council before these could be given amusement tax exemptions.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Concerto in Cebu

From: Inquirer Visayas

Rated ‘A’ indie comes to Cebu

By Viking Logarta

Visayas BureauFirst Posted 01:01:00 01/10/2009Filed Under: Cinema, Entertainment (general)

CEBU CITY – “Concerto” (Davao War Diary), a finalist in last year’s Cinemalaya festival, will finally be shown to Cebuano audiences starting Jan. 14 at SM Cebu during the week-long Sinulog festivities.

The war drama, directed by Paul Alexander Morales and with dialogues spoken in Tagalog and Cebuano with a mix of Niponggo, has been endorsed by the film body of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines for its technical qualities and treatment of faith and family.
Dr. Erlinda Alburo, executive director of the Cebuano Studies Center of the University of San Carlos, hailed the movie for its “superb filmic qualities.”

“In syncopated rhythms, ‘Concerto’ shows how a family strives to carry on a normal life in abnormal times, with the piano as symbol for harmony not only within the family itself but also within the countryside setting that accommodates the Japanese. Instead of frontline encounters, this war diary reveals the quiet interplay of suspicion and trust,” she said.
“Among other themes, there is a rare look at the Japanese missing home, and a delicate treatment of what-might-have-been between young adults.”
One of the actors, who portrayed the character Dr. Tan, is a sibling of the illustrious Yap clan from Bantayan Island in Cebu. Two of his brothers were deans of engineering and architecture of the USC during the late 1970s.

The movie also features Cebuano comic Garry Lim, who has been based in Manila for some time, and Nonoy Froilan from Samar, once a top Filipino ballet dancer.

Based on a true story, the film has been rated “A” by the Cinema Evaluation Board, who said it was of the same mold as Peque Gallaga’s “Oro, Plata, Mata” and Eddie Romero’s “Ganito Kami Noon, Papaano Kayo Ngayon?”

A special screening has also been organized by the University of the Philippines Cebu Student Council for UP students for Jan. 17. The Southwestern University’s student council set a special preview for faculty members and students Friday.

Other screenings are being organized by University of the Visayas alumni headed by lawyer Joseph Baduel and the group of Nicolas Ampatin, literature professor at the Cebu Institute of Technology.