(Seize the) LIGHTS! (Grab the) CAMERA! (Take) ACTION!

(Seize the) LIGHTS! (Grab the) CAMERA! (Take) ACTION!

Tell the story of the people’s aspirations

The Philippines in the year 2016 is once again transformed into a giant film set.

In front of the cameras are the same old actors bearing the same old names, heavily powdered and made up with glossy taglines and shinier promises.

At this time when all these actors compete for that coveted spot in the Political Walk of Fame, one must be quick to distinguish the sincere from those who only blurt out rehearsed lines from a script.

Meanwhile, the so-called bit players in the film – those who arrive earlier, do more work, get paid less – are the Filipino masses. In this grand production, it’s either they don’t have speaking parts or they only get edited out in the final cut.

The Philippine elections offer yet another pegged blockbuster of a tired plot to an already tired audience.

Every time, though, the challenge is for the millions of extras to take hold of the lights and the cameras, to be the main characters of a film that tells the true story of a people who have had their voices muted for so long but mustered the courage to shout “Cut!”

This year’s Pandayang Lino Brocka Political Film and New Media Festival will showcase such films. With “People’s Aspirations” as its theme, the festival is looking for short narratives, documentaries, animated shorts, music videos, and other audio-visual works that center on any of the following social and political issues:

  • National sovereignty and territorial integrity
  • Respect for human rights and genuine democracy
  • National industrialization
  • Genuine land reform
  • Higher working wages and decency of living
  • Prioritization of social services: education, health, housing, transportation, electricity
  • Fight against corruption
  • Nationalist education and culture
  • Rights of the LGBT (Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transgenders)
  • Economic sovereignty and patrimony
  • Protection of the environment and natural resources
  • Right to self-determination of national minorities
  • Peace process
  • International peace and solidarity

As the new breed of directors, the Filipino masses will break down the walls of the giant studio and take to the streets, schools, communities, and workplaces.

In these spaces, the directors’ “Action!” is not a cue to blurt out lines from a script. It is a chant calling for genuine change.

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