by Nickie Wang
Star Cinema’s third and final installment of the Ang Tanging Ina series starring AiAi delas Alas bagged a total of nine awards including Best Picture and Best Director at the recent edition of the Metro Manila Film Festival held 8 p.m. Sunday night at the Meralco Theater in Ortigas, Pasig City.
The comedy walked home with top acting honors for AiAi as Best Actress, Eugene Domingo (Best Supporting Actress), and for child wonder Xyriel Manabat as Best Child Performer.
“Naiiyak ako, kasi lahat sila best baka ako lang ang hindi (I’m crying because everybody won, and it’s a shame if I wouldn’t),” sobbed AiAi while accepting the top acting plum.
She added that she was dedicating the award to her co-nominees singling out Jennylyn Mercado as her closest rival to the recognition.
“Paubaya mo na sa akin ito Jennylyn. Pasensya ka na mas matanda naman ako sa iyo. Bigyan kita nito next time mas marami (Just give this award to me, anyway I’m older than you. I’ll give you more of this next time),” quipped the seasoned comedian. She was also apologetic to those she failed to mention in her acceptance speech and promised that she would greet them in The Buzz.
“Lahat binigay na sa akin ni Lord, isa na lang ang hiling ko na hindi Niya binibigay. Gusto kong mapangasawa si Vic Sotto para hindi na kami magkalaban. Kami na ang magpro-produce ng pelikula para lahat ng kita sa amin na (God has given me so much already but there’s one more wish that He hasn’t granted yet. I want Vic Sotto to be my husband so that we will no longer be competing up against each other during the festival season. We can both produce a film and keep the revenue to ourselves),” AiAi ended her speech that literally made everyone laughing.
Apart from the acting trophies, Ang Tanging Ina Mo (Last Na ‘To!) won awards in the creative and technical categories including Best Story (Mel Del Rosario), Best Screenplay (Del Rosario), Best Musical Score (Jesse Lazaten). It also the recipient of this year’s Most Gender-Sensitive Film Award, a recognition given by the government of Quezon City. The award encourages the promotion of equality and empowerment between Filipino women and men in films as part of the efforts of the city government’s Gender Advocacy and Management (GEM) program.
Other top winners
Comedy King Dolphy was a big winner as well last night. He won both the Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor for the films Father Jejemon and Rosario, respectively. But the 82-year-old comedian was a no-show at the awards night.
Cinemabuhay and Studio 5’s first foray into filmmaking was also a top winning film of the 36th Metro Manila Film Festival. Rosario, which took almost five years in production and graded A by the Cinema Evaluation Board (CEB), bagged seven awards including 2nd Best Picture, the Gatpuno Antonio Villegas Cultural Award, Best Production Design (Joel Luna and Miki Hahn), Best Cinematography (Carlo Mendoza), Best Editing (John Wong), and Best Float (the one that costed P5 million to make).
Meanwhile, the country’s first-ever full-length animated feature RPG Metanoia snatched the 3rd Best Picture plum. It also won three technical awards that include Best Original Song, Best Theme Song (“Kaya Ko”), and Best Sound Recording (for Ambient Media, an honor it shared with Ditoy Aguila for Super Inday and the Golden Bibe. It was also cited as Most Gender-Sensitive Animated Film.
The entry of Vic Sotto and Bong Revilla took home Best Visual Effects (Rico Guttierez) and Best Make-up (Nestor Dayao) while Kris Aquino’s horror film Dalaw went home empty-handed. The Best Indie Film award was given to the independent movie Presa directed by Adolf Alix.
Special awards were given to Bong Revilla and Sam Pinto as Male and Female Face of the Night and real life couple Dennis Trillo and Jennylyn Mercado as Best-Dressed Male and Female Celebrity.
The awarding ceremony started at 8 p.m. with a delayed telecast on GMA-7 at 10:30. The show was hosted by siblings Ruffa, Raymond and Richard Gutierrez. Among the performers were Christian Baustista, Kuh Ledesma, Pops Fernandez, Mark Herras, Mart Escudero and Marian Rivera.
A special tribute to Vilma Santos was staged through a Burlesque Queen dance number. According to host Ruffa Gutierrez, the film was once labeled as the best local movie of all time. The production featured former actress Amanda Paige, who recently got back from New York. She did a modern Burlesque dance.
Box office record
According to MMDA chairman Francis Tolentino, this year’s edition of the MMFF eclipsed the previous first-day record of the festival. Last year, on the opening day, the festival grossed P77 million while this year, the eight films already raked more than P90 million.
Si Agimat at Si Enteng Kabisote grossed abut P31 million on Christmas Day, Ang Tanging Ina, came in second with P20 million. Father Jejemon is at the bottom of the box-office race with just P1.4 million.
Star Cinema’s Dalaw is third with P12.5 million followed by Shake Rattle & Roll XII and RPG Metanoia with P11.8 million and P5.1 million, respectively. Super Inday and the Golden Bibe sold P4.7 million and Rosario registered P3.2 million ticket sales.
IMAGES BY JUDE BAUTISTA