MMFF Reaches ₱1 Billion In Gross Ticket Sales

The MMFF has reached ₱1 billion in gross ticket sales—the first time since its 2018 edition—and will be extending its run until January 14 amid high audience demand. 

As the world moves forward from pandemic restrictions over the past few years, cinema is making an explosive comeback around the world—and the Philippines is no exception to this. Audiences have been making up for lost time, setting out to enjoy the best that the film industry has to offer in actual theaters. If the ten-figure ticket sales of the latest Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) is any indication, the local film industry is experiencing incredible growth. Indeed, the 49th MMFF has earned ₱1 billion in gross ticket receipts, an impressive number that it last achieved in 2018. 

The official film line-up for the 49th MMFF
The official film line-up for the 49th MMFF/Photo via X @MMDA

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Strong Support 

In an official press statement, Attorney Don Artes—Acting Chairman of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and Overall Concurrent Chairman of the MMFF—the recent MMFF far exceeded the ₱500 million performance of its 2022 edition. It may even surpass the 2018 festival, as the MMDA announced that it would be extending its run until January 14. 

Shots from the film GomBurZa
Shots from the film GomBurZa/Photo via Instagram @gomburzafilm

Initially, the festival was meant to end on January 7 (Sunday). However, after receiving an overwhelming amount of calls and responses on social media from avid moviegoers, the MMDA announced that many more audiences will get the chance to experience its line-up of films. 

“We at the MMFF would like to express our deepest gratitude to all who have supported us and watched the movie entries, particularly those who requested for the MMFF movies to extend beyond its original run,” Attorney Artes expressed. 

A still from the 49th MMFF's top prize entry, Firefly
A still from the 49th MMFF’s top prize entry, Firefly/Photo from the GMA Network Youtube channel

The 10 entries from the 49th MMFF will also premiere in the Manila International Film Festival in Los Angeles, California, from January 29 to February 2, 2024. In his statement, Attorney Artes expresses that the large box office earnings of the recent MMFF is “a good sign as we gear up for the MIFF.” 

Championing Filipino Stories

One can credit the return to movie theaters as one reason why the MMFF experienced incredible ticket sales this year, but that’s only half of the story. Audiences and film critics across the country have shown their support for its 10 creative entries, recommending them through social media and word of mouth. The movies included in the 49th MMFF are Family of Two, K(ampon), Penduko, Rewind, Becky & Badette, Broken Hearts Trip, When I Met You In Tokyo, Firefly, Mallari, and GomBurZa

Many have praised the selection for its great movies, though four films stood out during the festival’s awards night, “Gabi ng Parangal,” on December 27, 2023. At first place for Best Picture was Zig Dulay’s fantastical, parent-child drama Firefly. In second place for Best Picture was Pepe Diokno’s historical film GomBurZa (which also scored the most accolades). Finally, Enrico Santos and Derick Cabrido’s highly-anticipated horror-thriller film Mallari took third place in the category, while Rado Peru’s sweet romantic film When I Met You In Tokyo bagged fourth place. 

Whether audiences are looking to watch (or re-watch) a few films that have caught their attention or all 10 entries, they’ve still got plenty of time to catch up and marvel at how far local cinema has come. 

Banner photos from the Firefly full trailer via GMA Network Youtube channel. 

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