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Bacolod Film Festival opens call for “Stories with a Smile”

Join the Bacolod Film Festival with your script for a chance to win a production grant and showcase your film! Submit by May 18 to participate in "Stories with a Smile."

The Bacolod Film Festival is now accepting script submissions with the theme “Stories with a Smile” or those with a “potential to inspire laughter, warmth, and a renewed appreciation for the brighter side of life.”

The filmfest, set to be held in September this year, is open to filmmakers who are registered voters and residents of Bacolod City. They can be producers, directors, or scriptwriters of an entry.

The festival accepts short film scripts of any genre, such as romance, drama, comedy, or horror, in any Filipino language with English translation. Entries must be submitted on or before May 18, Saturday, 11:59 p.m., after which ten (10) finalists will be chosen.

Bacolod City Mayor Albee Benitez with the Bacolod Film Festival Team

Selected filmmakers will be given a production grant of 300,000 pesos each, to be released in two tranches, of which the first one is worth 200,000 pesos. The remaining 100,000 pesos will be released once the picture lock version of the film has been submitted.

The total running time of the produced films must be at a minimum of fifteen (15) minutes and maximum of twenty (20) minutes, including opening and closing credits. The short films must be in narrative live action form, when taken as a whole. Documentary, experimental or animation will not be accepted, except if added only as elements within the film.

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Bacolod City Councilor Em Ang at work

The Bacolod Film Festival aims to create a venue where local filmmakers and producers can showcase their talents and further solidify Bacolod, known as the “City of Smiles,” as one of the creative hubs for filmmaking in the Philippines.

“Bacolod should be proud of its creatives. We have very artistic directors, and actors,” Mayor Alfredo Abelardo “Albee” Benitez, who also chairs the Bacolod Film Festival Council, said.

Bacolod City Mayor Albee Benitez meets with the Bacolod Film Festival Team

The Bacolod City Council or Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) recently passed City Ordinance No. 1061, or the Bacolod Film Festival Ordinance, authored by Councilor Em L. Ang, with Councilors Cindy Rojas and Celia Matea Flor as co-authors. Councilor Ang, chairperson of the SP Committee on History, Culture and Arts, also serves as BFFC vice chair.

Aside from Mayor Benitez and Councilor Ang, the BFFC is composed of the chair of the SP Committee on Tourism, City Tourism Officer, City Legal Officer, City Budget Officer, Local Economic Development and Investment Promotion Officer, Department of Education Division Superintendent, representatives from SM and Ayala Malls Cinemas and the local film industry.

Bacolod City Council or Sangguniang Panlungsod in session

Members of the BFF Organizing Committee and their relatives (up to the second degree of consanguinity) are prohibited from joining the competition. There is no entry fee to participate.

Multiple entries are accepted, but each script must be submitted with a separate entry form and online registration. The selection committee will only consider one entry per finalist.

The short films must have their premiere at the Bacolod Film Festival this September.

For more inquiries, you may email bacolodfilmfestival@gmail.com or send a message on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/BacolodFilmFestival

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