In the mid-2000s, the Philippines became globally renowned for its burgeoning independent film scene, which in turn sparked public debates regarding audiences, distribution, and institutional support. This presentation examines three institutions central to the nation’s diverse screen cultures: the transnational film festival circuit, an abstracted aggregate of foreign, “art film” circulation that significantly influences production and aesthetics at the local level; Cinemalaya, a mixture of state, private sector, and academe; and Sineng Pambansa, a Film Development Council initiative. It analyzes how local publics imagine these institutions as a means of balancing ideal relations between the state, commercial industry, indie filmmakers, and audiences.
Jasmine Nadua Trice is Assistant Professor of Cinema and Media Studies at UCLA. She previously taught at the National University of Singapore and worked in feminist media development.