‘Firefly’ Wins MMFF Best Picture, ‘GomBurza’ Tops With 7 Awards

The feel-good movie Firefly pulled a surprise at the 49th Metro Manila Film Festival’s Gabi ng Parangal when it was announced Best Picture, just a notch ahead of the night’s biggest winner, the historical film GomBurZa, which amassed a total of seven awards.

“Inaalay namin ang pelikula sa lahat ng taong naniniwala sa kapangyarihan ng pangarap, kapangyarihan ng pag-ibig at kapangyarihan ng sining,” said Firefly’s director Zig Dulay in accepting the Best Picture award on behalf of the film producers, GMA Pictures and GMA Public Affairs, as well as the cast, staff and crew. (We offer this movie to all the people who believe in the power of dreams, love and art.)

Firefly won two other awards: Best Screenplay for Angeli Atienza and the Best Child Performer for lead star Euwenn Mikaell.

GomBurZa, on the other hand, was awarded the 2nd Best Picture, Best Director for Pepe Diokno, Best Actor for Cedrick Juan, Best Cinematography, Best Production Design, Best Sound and the Gatpuno Antonio Villegas Cultural Award.

Juan began his speech by introducing himself as he knows he’s not as popular compared to his competitors Piolo Pascual (Mallari), Dingdong Dantes (Rewind) and Christopher de Leon (When I Met You in Tokyo). He then looked back on his formative years in theater and went on thanking the producers of the movie about the three martyr priests GomBurZa, with him taking on the role of Father Jose Burgos.

“Maraming, maraming salamat, JesCom, sa pagsugal sa akin (thank you for taking a chance on me),” he said. “Maraming, maraming salamat, Pepe Diokno, dahil sumugal ka sa akin (Thank you, you gambled on me)…Inaalay ko ang parangal na ito para sa lahat ng Pilipinong hindi nakakakuha ng tamang hustisya. (I offer this award to all Filipinos who don’t get the justice.)

Philippine entertainment icon, Vilma Santos, copped the Best Actress award for her comeback movie, When I Met You in Tokyo. She turned emotional as she admitted not expecting to win. She said she only wanted to help revive the movie industry by participating in the MMFF with her perennial leading man De Leon, who also co-directed the movie.

The multi-awarded actress shared the latest addition to her collection with other nominees Sharon Cuneta (Family of Two), Marian Rivera (Rewind) and Pokwang and Eugene Domingo (both of Becky & Badette). She called Cuneta her friend and Rivera her inaanak (godchild), as she stood as a principal sponsor in Rivera’s wedding with Dantes in 2014.

This year, the MMFF has a total of 10 entries, which all opened last 25 December, Christmas Day, in cinemas nationwide. The film fest will run until 7 January.

Here’s the full list of winners:

Best Picture: Firefly
2nd Best Picture: GomBurZa
3rd Best Picture: Mallari
4th Best Picture: When I Met You in Tokyo
Best Director: Pepe Diokno (GomBurZa)
Best Screenplay: Angeli Atienza (Firefly)
Best Actress: Vilma Santos (When I Met You in Tokyo)
Best Actor: Cedrick Juan (GomBurZa)
Best Supporting Actress: Miles Ocampo (Family of Two)
Best Supporting Actor: JC Santos (Mallari)
FPJ Memorial Award for Excellence: When I Met You in Tokyo
Gatpuno Antonio Villegas Cultural Award: GomBurZa
Marichu Vera-Perez Maceda Award: “Mother” Lily Monteverde
Gender Sensitivity Award: Becky & Badette
Best Cinematography: Carlo Canlas Mendoza (GomBurZa)
Best Editing: Benjamin Tolentino ((K)ampon
Best Production Design: Erickson Navarro (GomBurZa)
Best Visual Effects: Gaspar Mangarin (Mallari)
Best Original Theme Song: “Finggah Lickin” (Becky & Badette)
Best Musical Score: Von De Guzman (Mallari)
Best Sound: Melvin Q. Rivera and Loiue Boy Bauson (GomBurZa)
Best Child Performer: Euwenn Mikaell (Firefly)
Best Float: When I Met You in Tokyo