The annual Japanese Film Festival (JFF), a hallmark event celebrating Japanese cinema, officially commenced at the Shangri-La Plaza Atrium.
Hosted by the Japan Foundation Manila, this year’s festival opened with a special reception, highlighting the enduring cultural ties between Japan and the Philippines.
The event was graced by the presence of Deputy Chief of Mission and Minister MATSUDA Kenichi, Japan Foundation Manila Director SUZUKI Ben, and Johnny Rios, Head of Operations at Shangri-La Plaza.
The opening night transformed the Atrium into a vibrant showcase of Japanese culture, with performances by Sharilla Cerilles that took guests on a nostalgic journey through the iconic music of “Voltes V” and “Slam Dunk.”
The festival’s headliner, “The First Slam Dunk,” a sequel to the beloved anime, was screened for free, offering fans a chance to relive the magic of Takehiko Inoue’s classic.
In a highlight of the evening, the Ambassador’s Commendation was awarded to notable figures in the Philippine entertainment industry for their role in popularizing Japanese pop culture.
Among the awardees were Mr. Larry Chan of TELESUCCESS PRODUCTIONS, credited with introducing seminal works like “Super Electromagnetic Machine Voltes V” and “Slam Dunk” to Filipino audiences, and the GMA Network Inc., recognized for their live-action adaptation, “VOLTES V LEGACY.”
The adaptation, which premiered last April, has been a resounding success, capturing the hearts of viewers both locally and internationally.
Deputy Chief of Mission and Minister MATSUDA Kenichi lauded the awardees for their significant contributions to the cultural exchange between Japan and the Philippines.
He remarked on the importance of their pioneering work in making Japanese pop culture a gateway for Filipinos to explore the rich traditions of Japan, describing it as a “legacy chapter in the history of cultural exchange” between the two nations.
The Japanese Film Festival 2024 stands as a testament to the deep-rooted friendship and mutual appreciation of arts and culture between Japan and the Philippines, promising an enriching cinematic experience for all attendees. – EventsNews.Asia