I was browsing this media journal which contains a list of all the Filipino films made in 2003. It was a dismal year in terms of production: the country only made 80 films; down from 94 in 2002 and 103 in 2001. It was the lowest in several decades, considering that the national average never went down 120 films a year, even during the most critical times in our history and economy.
Of those 80 that made it to the cinemas, a huge chunk were sex themed movies with a few attempts at romantic comedies thrown in. The biggest box office showing was from a comedy, Ang Tanging Ina, which now claims to be the highest grossing Pinoy film ever, bringing down the record set by Anak in 2000. There weren’t too many action movies, and the studios still dominated the game. Viva Films (and its alter egos, er, coproductions) logged in the most number of products in a year at 13, followed by Star Cinema with 8, and with Regal Films and Elñino Films with 6 apiece. Not included in the tally were all the adult-themed (read: soft porn) VCDs that came out last year. If so, we might have had a higher showing, what with the Viva Hot Babes series and those tease flicks masquerading as exercise videos.
Anyway, as I gave the list a rundown, it’s all the usual suspects. But I noticed that one guy’s name frequently came up in the list. Whoever this Dennis Evangelista guy is, he must have had a very prolific year writing. His filmography for 2003, accompanied with the release dates:
With a grand total of 9 movies (though I suspect it might me more than that, since there are a number of bold flicks with no credited writers), he bested Roy Iglesias, Raquel Villavicencio and Jose Javier Reyes for most number of projects made. Yes, his movies are headlined with starlets that are really sidebar material, and are most probably shown in second rate theaters, but this man owns roughly 10% of the GNP of Pinoy movies for the past year. Wether we like it or not, this guy is shaping our country’s collective libog. He is influencing our pedestrian viewers’ minds with his sex themed movies which are usually set in an agricultural milieu.
Balat-Sibuyas (starring the late Halina Perez, Feb 5)
Punla (Apr 23)
Bigay Hilig (June 4)
Tumitibok…Kumikirot (June 25)
Motel (Aug 6)
Kiskisan (Oct 1)
Pilya (Oct 8)
Sex Scandal (Nov 19)
Ako, Siya o Ikaw? (Nov26)
I want to meet him.
The special mention award goes to Portiah (emphasis on the ahh!) Alviz-Miguerza, writer-director (ehem, ehem auteur) of Silang Mga Rampadora, a hilarious bit about “a promo girl for alcoholic drinks who has what it takes to invade the fashion runways but the top model she idolizes makes things hard for her.” In other words, it’s a re-appropriated Sharon Cuneta-Cherie Gil movie with low rent starlets thinking they can do high fashion. It features Odette Khan and a bunch of other people we don’t know.