Filipino film ‘Primetime Mother’ is having its US premiere at the AFI Fest
Filipino game shows kept us company while growing up. The total experience of sitting in front of the TV with our families, trying to compete with each other, and placing our bets on who we think would be the winning contestant or team is even a “game show” in itself.
But what if the fun and vibrant competitions we watch actually take a dark and twisted turn? If this idea has been circling around your head, it might be worth paying attention to the new Filipino film “Primetime Mother.”
This 14-minute short directed and written by Sonny Calvento (“Excuse Me Miss, Miss, Miss”) is flying to the AFI Fest film festival, marking its US premiere. Slated on Oct. 25 to 29, the 37th edition of the event will happen at the TCL Chinese Theatre along Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles, California.
On Facebook, the film’s production house Southern Lantern Studios announced the feat, highlighting that “Primetime Mother” is the lone Filipino film in the roster, and talked about the festival’s relevance: “Recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as a qualifying festival for short film categories of the Oscars, AFI Fest has been graced by the presence of A-list artists and celebrities, including Nicole Kidman, Marion Cotillard, Natalie Portman, Tilda Swinton, Isabelle Huppert, David Lynch, Pedro Almodovar, among others.”
According to the festival’s site, “Primetime Mother” will delve into how the “willpower of a mother is tested.” This is while she goes through a popular Philippine game show’s “tedious and degrading” audition.
Calvento’s second short film is included in the fest’s Short Film Competition: Live Action 2 category, where it sits beside “The Old Young Crow” (USA), “Thursday (Czwartek) (Poland),” “Sèt Lam” (France), “Hafekasi” (Australia), and “Madden” (Sweden). AFI Fest has also unveiled the titles for the rest of its categories, with its current lineup amounting to more than 140 films from 49 countries.
In case you missed it, “Primetime Mother” had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), where another Filipino film, Jun Robles Lana’s “Anak Ka Ng Ina Mo,” was also included. Southern Lantern Studios has also revealed that Calvento’s film is on the way to six more international film fests before 2023 draws to a close.
“Primetime Mother” is screening on Oct. 27, 4:30 p.m. at the AFI Fest.