MANILA - A coalition of several pro-OFW (overseas Filipino workers) groups have written an open letter to the organizers of this year's Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF), urging them to ensure that the documentary "Sunday Beauty Queen," one of the eight entries, is shown in more cinemas.
The letter warns that the film, about the private lives of OFWs living in Hong Kong, is in danger of "extinction" as theater owners opt to fill cinemas with the "usual star-studded, commercial movies."
It also said that the Baby Ruth Villarama-directed feature, the first documentary to be chosen to be part of the so-called "Magic 8" of the annual film festival, is a "must-see" for families of OFWs as it is "replete with lessons that may also serve as a wake-up call to those aspiring to work abroad."
The letter was written by ACTS OFW party-list, the Blas F. Ople Policy Center, Migrant NGO Forum, Filipino Migrant Workers’ Group, OFW Family Advocates, Kabalikat ng Migranteng Pilipino, Inc., and the Kapisanan ng mga Kamag-anak at Migrante Manggagawang Pilipino, Inc.
The groups want the organizers to convince theater owners to give "Sunday Beauty Queen" a chance, even if it is not one of the top grossers among the entries, according to early ticket sales. The film is currently being shown in only 45 theaters nationwide, the letter furthered.
"Here is our appeal: Please help convince our theater owners to give ''Sunday Beauty Queen'' a fighting chance. Considering the overall contribution of the OFW sector to our national and regional economies, certainly this appeal deserves some consideration," the letter read.
"Already, we are receiving requests from OFW families to be able to see the film in their home provinces. They want to see the film but can’t find the nearest theaters to view it in."
"To the theater owners, we ask: Can you devote a single cinema with special screening hours for the OFW families that have been patronizing your malls and theaters the whole year round?"