Three Filipino Movies Set for Tokyo International Film Festival

TOKYO – Three movies from the Philippines are participating in the 36th edition of the Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF), with one entering the Main Competition section, and the other two screening in the World Focus section.

Sheron Dayoc’s “The Gospel of the Beast,” starring Jansen Magpusao, Ronnie Lazaro, and John Renz Javie, is poised to have its world premiere in the esteemed A-list festival. The film is set to compete against 14 other entries, carefully chosen from a pool of 1,942 titles spanning 114 countries and regions, in the Main Competition section.

According to the TIFF website, the film narrates the story of a poor young man who becomes involved with an organization, unveiling the harsh realities of the darker facets of Philippine society.

Dayoc expressed his enthusiasm in a Facebook post, stating, “After being on a hiatus from film directing since 2017, I am thrilled to announce, on behalf of the team, that our film ‘The Gospel of the Beast’ has been selected to be part of the main competition section at the 36th Tokyo International Film Festival, taking place from October 23rd to November 1st.”

“We embarked again on this journey in 2021, and now we are finally ready to share our film with the world.

“A heartfelt thank you goes out to our incredible cast and crew, whose unwavering dedication and talent brought this project to life.

“We would also like to express our gratitude to the Film Development Council of the Philippines and the people and government of Panay for their invaluable support.

“Indeed, it’s a remarkable full-circle moment! Wim Wenders, the director of ‘Wings of Desire,’ the arthouse film that first inspired me to become a filmmaker, will preside as the jury president of the festival.

“Stay tuned for more updates and details as we gear up for this incredible cinematic adventure. Your unwavering support means the world to us, and we can’t wait to share ‘The Gospel of the Beast’ with you all,” he said.

Furthermore, Lav Diaz’s “Essential Truths of the Lake,” featuring John Lloyd Cruz, Hazel Orencio, and Shaina Magdayao, is set to screen in the World Focus section. Paul Soriano’s “The Fisher,” nominated for the Ethical Film Award and starring Mon Confiado, Mercedes Cabral, Enchong Dee, Heaven Peralejo, and Eula Valdez, is also part of this section.

Award-winning Filipino indie filmmaker Raymond Red is selected as one of the jurors of the Asian Future section of the festival.

This year’s TIFF is scheduled to run from Oct. 23 to Nov. 1 at various venues in the Hibiya-Yurakucho-Ginza area. - Florenda Corpuz

(Photos courtesy of TIFF)