CineFilipino Film Festival 2017 to Feature “Stories Worth Watching”

CineFilipino Film Festival 2017 promises to continue churning out a trove of “stories worth watching, and stories worth celebrating.” Organizers confirmed that exceptional stories would continue to be the top priority in the three categories – feature length, short films (student and open categories) and digital content.


Organized by Unitel Productions and Cignal TV, this year’s edition hopes to surpass last year’s harvest of nearly 500 entries. Unitel President and Festival Director, Madonna Tarrayo believes that CineFilipino’s attraction lies largely on its stories appeal to a wide spectrum of audiences and relatable stories. “We want content creators and filmmakers to continue taking the bold steps in telling their stories, and we want to be there to support them. In the same way, we want our audiences to be part of the experience and get thoroughly immersed as they watch every single film,” Tarrayo adds.

Submission of entries is now ongoing. The festival is open to all filmmakers of Filipino citizenship or descent. Among others, entries will be judged according to (1) originality of material and freshness of approach, (2) the entry’s authentic reflection of Filipino culture and human experience, (3) strong potential for audience engagement, (4) should be of high quality and highly appealing of the masses, (5) commercial viability.

Generous cash prizes await the winning entries. Aside from the prizes for each of the three categories, there will also be a People’s Choice Award.

Although relatively new in the industry, Tarrayo believes that CineFilipino is doing its part in boosting the film industry. “We are happy that we have helped the filmmaker and the industries in making their visions come to life. The advantage of being new in this turf is that you have lots of room for improvement each year,” Tarray says.

It is still about the stories that are waiting to be told.  The new pillars of CineFilipino are the reasons why it will continue to be strong and successful. The vision for the festival is now supported by an architecture that will make it future-proof: A strong foundation of expertly sourced films and a fresh resource of crowd-generated contents.

8 Feature-Length Films will be selected which will be give a Php 2 million grant. The length of the feature film should not be more than 2 hours long. All professionals and new film directors are encouraged to join and scripts must be submitted together with brief synopses and sequence treatments.

5 finished Short Films will be selected among student entries (duly endorsed by the school). 5 finalists will be selected among open entries (non-students). Finished short films submitted must be 5 to 30 minutes long.

10 finalists for the Digital Content will be selected. This is open to all online content creators. Created content must be submitted must not exceed 4 minutes.

(From left to right) Joey Reyes, Lem Lorca, Ice Idanan, Madonna Tarrayo and Randolph Longjas

The announcement of finalists will be done in April. Interested filmmakers can log on to for more details on the mechanics. The CineFilipino Film Festival 2017 will run on the third week of November.

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