MANILA – The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Friday announced the first four film entries for the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) 2022, the 48th year of the annual cinematic celebration.

In a statement, the MMDA said the MMFF 2022 is led by its selection committee with film industry veterans Boots Anson-Roa Rodrigo and Jesse Ejercito as chair and vice-chair respectively.

The top four scripts, it said, were chosen based on artistic excellence (40 percent), commercial appeal (40 percent), Filipino cultural sensibility (10 percent), and global appeal (10 percent).

These include "Labyu with an Accent" by ABS-CBN Film productions—with director Rodel Nacianceno, scriptwriter Patrick Valencia and starring Coco Martin and Jodi Sta. Maria—and "Nananahimik ang Gabi" by Rein Entertainment Productions—with director and writer Shugo Praico and starring Ian Veneracion, Mon Confiado, and Heaven Peralejo.

The third and fourth entries are "Partners in Crime" by ABS-CBN Film Productions—with director Cathy Garcia-Molina, scriptwriter Enrico Santos, and starring Vice Ganda and Ivana Alawi—and "The Teacher" by TEN17P—with director Paul Soriano, scriptwriter Emma Villa, and starring Joey De Leon and Toni Gonzaga.

“The deadline for the finished film submission, where the other 4 official MMFF entries shall be chosen, shall be on September 2 for early birds submission and September 30 for regular submission,” it said.

The MMFF 2022, it said, will have the theme, "Balik Saya (joy returns)," signifying the return of Filipinos to the cinema during the Christmas season. (PNA)