Sigrid Andrea Bernardo’s “Kita Kita” won four awards to lead all the winners in the 34th Philippine Movie Press Club (PMPC) Star Awards for Movies held Sunday at the Newport Performing Arts Theater of Resorts World Manila.
The quirky romantic comedy that became the surprise blockbuster of 2107 won Movie of the Year, Movie Director of the Year, Movie Screenwriter of the Year and Movie Editor of the Year for Marya Ignacio.
Almost one year after it premiered on local cinemas, the film recently made its Southeast Asian debut on the popular video-on-demand service HOOQ where it can be streamed not only in the Philippines but also in Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia and India.
After four previous nominations, Iza Calzado finally won her first Star Awards for Movies for Movie Actress of the Year for her performance as a disturbed actress in Jerrold Tarog’s psychological thriller, “Bliss.” Iza had been previously nominated for “Ouija” (2007), “Dukot” (2009), “Starting Over Again” (2015) and “Etiquette for Mistresses” (2016).
Raymond “R.S.” Francisco emerged as the surprise winner for Movie Actor of the Year for Joel Lamangan’s “Bhoy Intsik” while Arnold Reyes won Movie Supporting Actor of the Year for Mikhail Red’s “Birdshot” and Odette Khan won Movie Supporting Actress of the Year for Kip Oebanda’s “Bar Boys.”
Marco Masa (“Tatlong Bibe”) and Julio Cesar Sabenorio (“Guerrero”) tied for Movie Child Performers of the Year while Chito Roño’s “The Ghost Bride” won Movie Sound Engineer of the Year for Albert Micheal Idioma.
Paul Soriano’s “Siargao” won two awards: Movie Cinematographer of the Year for Odyssey Flores and Movie Production Designer of the Year for Benjamin Padero and Carlo Tabije.
In the separate Indie Movie categories, Dan Villegas’ “Changing Partners,” a romantic drama based on the Palanca-winning musical play by Vincent de Jesus, was the big winner as it won Indie Movie of the Year, Indie Movie Director of the Year, Indie Movie Screenwriter of the Year for Lilit Reyes and Vincent de Jesus, Indie Movie Editor of the Year for Marya Ignacio and Indie Movie Musical Scorer for the Year for Vincent de Jesus.
With her awards for both “Kita Kita” and “Changing Partners,” seasoned film editor Marya Ignacio had the rare distinction of winning twice on the same night.
“Bliss” also won Indie Movie Sound Engineer of the Year for Mikko Quizon while “Birdshot” won Indie Movie Production of the Year for Michael Espanol.
Other winners were Indie Movie Original Theme Song of the Year for “Respeto” as interpreted by Abra and Loonie and Movie Original Theme Song of the Year went to “Natapos Tayo” from “All of You” as interpreted by Nar Cabico.
As in previous years, the PMPC Star Awards also gave special recognitions for New Movie Actor of the Year, which was won by Mccoy de Leon (“Instalado”) and Matteo San Juan (“Magkadugo”); New Movie Actress of the Year won by Pia Wurtzbach (“Gandarrapido: The Revenger Squad”) and Joanna Ampil (“Ang Larawan”); Movie Love Team of the Year for Joshua Garcia and Julia Barretto; Darling of the Press for Harlene Bautista; Male Star of the Night for Xian Lim; Female Star of the Night for Kim Chiu and Joyce Pilarsky; Faces of the Night for Joshua Garcia and Celeste Legaspi.
As for career achievement honors, actress-director Gina Alajar won the Nora Aunor Ulirang Artista Award while filmmaker Tikoy Aguiluz won the Ulirang Alagad ng Pelikula sa Likod ng Kamera.