CEBU, Philippines - As far as the Luna Awards of the Film Academy of the Philippines is concerned, there were only two quality movies worthy of awards.
At the 31st Luna Awards held on Saturday, June 1, at the Quezon City Sports Club, only the movies â€œEl Presidenteâ€ and â€œThe Mistressâ€ made it to the winnersâ€™ circle as it got the most number of awards. The only other film that won was â€œOne More Tryâ€ which picked up the best actress award for Angel Locsin.
Big winner in the acting category was the Star Cinema-produced movie, "The Mistress" which won the awards for best actor (John Lloyd Cruz), best supporting actor (Ronaldo Valdez) and supporting actress (Ms. Hilda Koronel).
Lady director Olivia Lamasan got the best director, also for "The Mistress." It was her first award from her peers in the movie industry.
"The Mistress" also won for best editing (Marya Ignacio) and best screenplay for Vanessa Valdez.
Adjudged as the Best picture winner was the Gov. George â€œERâ€ Ejercito Estrada starrer "El Presidente" which also picked up most of the technical awards: Best sound (Albert Michael Idioma), best musical score (Jesse Lasaten), best production design (Danny Red and Joel M. V. Bilbao) and best cinematography (Carlo Mendoza).
What saddens us is that the Luna Awards is considered the industry award (the Luna Awards is the local counterpart of Oscars where actors and film practitioners are judged by their peers) but none of their winners were around to accept their trophies.
John Lloyd Cruz is on vacation in Europe. It was his girlfriend Angelica Panganiban who posted on Instagram her thank you to Luna Awards on behalf of the actor.
Angel Locsin was reportedly on location shoot for her current Star Cinema film "Four Sisters and a Wedding" while Hilda is based in the United States thus her failure to attend the awards night.
Veteran actor Ronaldo was in town but he was also a no-show. We could probably surmise that he didnâ€™t know that the Luna Awards was set on Saturday. We also didnâ€™t know about it until we received a text message, inviting us to do coverage.
Even the winners of the technical awards were also not around. If not for the presence of Gov. ER Ejercito Estrada and his producer Mylene Enriquez, no one would have accepted the Best Picture trophy for â€œEl Presidente.â€
The FAP Luna Awards also honored lady filmmaker Marilou Diaz Abaya and multi-awarded actor-director Eddie Garcia with Lifetime Achievement awards.
The FAP sent the movie â€œBwakawâ€ as Philippine entry to the Oscar Best Foreign Film Category but it did not win any nod from the Luna Awards. However, it had a number of nominations, including best actor for Eddie Garcia.
The Luna Awards is given by the industry people to their peers but itâ€™s disheartening that the big stars donâ€™t support it. There were no big stars present during the awards night except for Direk Eddie.
Actor-director Leo Martinez, the Director General of the FAP, is calling on his colleagues to attend a general assembly on July 27 at the Mowelfund to spell out what it will take to achieve a revitalized and expanded Academy, and more importantly, a vibrant and united local motion picture industry.
We had a chance to talk to Ms. Jolina Magdangal at the party of our friend, movie scribe John Fontanilla last Sunday and the singer-actress confirmed that she is a part of the new show that is replacing Party Pilipinas.
According to Jolens, she already had a meeting with the programâ€™s production staff but she said she is not in the position to disclose the details with regards to the programâ€™s composition. With regards to the line-up of stars joining the new show, the final casting is still being finalized although Jolina said the cast could probably reach 50 in number although said number could also be changed from now till the 16th of June, the time when the show will be launched.
While she is saddened with the demise of Party Pilipinas on the air, Jolens expressed excitement for the new show but she admits there is added pressure because the public would be expecting more from the new show.
The GMA Network participated in the annual Pasayahan sa Lucena Festival last Tuesday, May 28. The stars of the series â€œHome Sweet Homeâ€ namely Raymart Santiago, Jillian Ward, Roxanne Guinoo, Rochelle Pangilinan, Arthur Solinap and Jhake Vargas joined the colorful parade.
â€œPasayahan sa Lucenaâ€ was conceptualized to showcase the natural and ecological interrelationship and independence between nature and man. It also promotes the ways of life inherent among the people of Lucena. All these find exquisite and appreciative expressions through a mammoth gathering of colors, outlandish costumes and symbolic floats reminiscent of Mardi Gras in Rio de Janeiro and New Orleans.
The first Pasayahan in 1987 was a big triumph that it has become an annual affair. Year after year the Pasayan draws a sea of frolicking humanity. Pasayahan sa Lucena 2006 features Chami Festival to promote Lucenaâ€™s very own native delicacy, the chami. Other features such as the Midnight Madness Sale and street concerts look stage in the Pasayahan.