Short films will take center stage in this year’s edition of the Cinemalaya Film Festival which will push through despite the challenges of the COVID-19 global health pandemic.
According to festival organizers, because of the challenges presented by the COVID pandemic on the filming schedules and budgets of full length film entries, many of the filmmakers were unable to complete their films by deadline. This is why all of this year’s scheduled entries will be added to next year’s hopefuls for a grand karambola of 19 full length features in Cinemalaya 2021.
Despite this setback, it was a good thing that there was a pool of 240 high quality short film submissions that can sustain this year’s edition of Cinemalaya for its transition year.
From August 7 to 16, 10 short films in competition and 20 exhibition short films, will be shown on Vimeo. A festival pass that includes access to all the entries, talk balks and webinars will only cost P350. Patrons can also purchase a more affordable option of P75 for a bundle of five short films.
Chris B. Millado, artistic director of the CCP and festival director of Cinemalaya, said that they are not expecting the same amount of revenues as previous years, given the huge difference in ticket prices for physical screenings. Instead, this year’s transition to the digital platform will measure its success through its continuous connection with the audience.
He said it is also important to continuously provide a platform wherein filmmakers can showcase their art, which is one of the main reasons that Cinemalaya is going digital this year despite the added effort to transition to a different platform.
Millado said that they have also partnered with ABS-CBN’s iWant and TFC to bring the films to more audiences and maximize its reach after the festival’s run.
On the issue of piracy, Millado said that they have chosen the Vimeo platform because of its encrypted platform which will make it hard for film pirates to extract and distribute the films illegally.
Still, he said that their team will remain vigilant against piracy and asked film fans to report any attempts to distribute the Cinemalaya films illegally.