‘Beauty and the Bestie’ is Coco Martin’s first ever MMFF entry.
The 2015 Metro Manila Film Festival like the ones before it will be having eight official entries, five new wave entries, five short films, and five animated films. But this year, a number of “firsts” would be seen by the holiday season moviegoers.
1. First-ever MMFF participation
A number of the actors taking part this year are not only first-timers for the festivals but also first-timers in the movie scene like the Haunted Mansion cast Jerome Ponce, Marlo Mortel, and Janella Salvador, as well as My Bebe Love stars Alden Richards and Maine Mendoza. Japanese actress Maria Ozawa could also fall into this category as her entry Nilalang is her first ever film in the Philippines.
Although he has made a number of highly-acclaimed films to date, leading man John Lloyd Cruz is a first-timer in the MMFF scene. Same with Pokwang and popular love team JaDine composed of James Reid and Nadine Lustre. Comedian Lassy together with young stars Marco Masa and Alonzo Muhlach are also making the MMFF debut.
2. First pairings
Apart from new actors, this MMFF season would also witness new and interesting pairings. There’s the tandem of real-life best friends Coco and Vice Ganda for comedy film Beauty and the Bestie, Maria and Cesar Montano for fantasy-action Nilalang. There’s also Jennylyn Mercado and Jericho for the romance film Walang Forever and John Lloyd and Merryl Soriano for the dark film Honor Thy Father.
3. First and new themes, plots and concepts
While this should always be the case every year, there are years when the MMFF lineup becomes to common and formulaic that nothing new is ever introduced. This year, there’s the concept of Buy Now, Die Later wherein they have incorporated the five senses into a local comedy-horror film. Then there’s Nilalang’s ninja theme as well inclusion of an actual Japanese star in the cast.
4. First-time festival directors
While the New Wave scene is really the arena for budding directors, the official entry segment has also opened its gates new blood, as far as directors are concerned. Although the ones who participated are not entirely new in the business like All You Need is Pag-ibig’s Direk Tonette Jadaone who’s also the director of the hit primetime soap On The Wings of Love. Then there’s Buy Now, Die Later’s Randolph Longjas who’s a director at TV5.