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Products to try for a ‘new you’ in the New Year

I FELT IT would be a pity if I didn’t end the year with a skincare review -- and this time it’s all about Filipino skincare brands that I’ve discovered and would recommend to those who want to start their “new year, new me” regimen in a bit more than a weeks’ time.

FDCP can’t use taxes as incentives — SC

THE Supreme Court (SC) has affirmed with finality its 2015 decision to disallow the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) from collecting and giving film amusement taxes as incentives to select films.

Bono-backed firm partners with PHL Red Cross

THE Philippine Red Cross (PRC) has tapped California-based drone delivery service Zipline to make on-demand and emergency blood deliveries nationwide starting 2020.

Film takes a look behind the scenes of filmmaking

A FILM about the unsung heroes of the film industry is what the Metro Manila Film Festival entry Write About Love is about, according to a production executive. The film explores the often personal journey a writer takes to create a screenplay.

4 Weddings and a Funeral is now a mini-series

A MINI-SERIES based on Mike Newell’s popular 1994 film Four Weddings and a Funeral is set to air on Blue Ant Entertainment starting Dec. 17 at 10:35 p.m.

December Ave. is most streamed artist in PHL

ORIGINAL Pilipino Music (OPM) reigned supreme in 2019 according to music streaming service Spotify, as indie rock band December Avenue topped the Most Streamed Artists list in the Philippines, the first time a Filipino did so.

Lenovo adds two new models to its ThinkBook product line

FOR its last hurrah for 2019, Lenovo Philippines launched two entries to its newly-introduced ThinkBook line created for “today’s young and digitally-inclined professionals who seek the perfect balance between high-end specifications and premium aesthetics in work devices.”

Goyo bags top Luna Award

HISTORICAL epic Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral by Jerrold Tarog won Best Motion Picture along with several technical awards at the Luna Awards, held on Nov. 30 at the Maybank Performing Arts Theater in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig.

Short films, video art the focus of .giff Festival

LOCAL PRODUCTION company Globe Studios is holding a two-day art fair for video art projections and independent short films. It will be held on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 in three venues in Makati City.

Unbreakable explores a different kind of romance

THE STORY of “unbreakable” friendships is the crux of Unbreakable, the newest film from ABS-CBN Star Cinema which screens nationwide starting Nov. 27 and stars Bea Alonzo and Angelica Panganiban.

Mom makes the decisions on online purchases — survey

THE FILIPINO digital mom makes “the biggest purchase decisions in the household,” relies on social media for parenting tips, and goes online after the children are asleep, according to the results of the 2019 Digital Moms Survey by Singapore-based community app, theAsianparent.

Canva looks to double workforce

THE local headquarters of graphic design company Canva is looking at doubling their workforce, especially their design and operations team, by 2020 as the country continues to be “design hub” for the company.

Acer partners with Realme for holiday promo

FOR the holidays, Taiwanese hardware and electronics company Acer is partnering with Chinese smartphone company Realme as they give away Realme smartphones for every qualified Acer laptop purchase from now until Dec. 31.

MullenLowe’s NOVA Awards Manila shortlist out

MARKETING communications company MullenLowe has announced the shortlist for its inaugural NOVA Awards Manila which “celebrates the work of the Philippines’ most talented artists,” according to a company release.

Films on gay men, intersex person bag top prizes in film...

SILA-SILA, a film about gay men navigating through breakups and friendships, and Metamorphosis, a film about an intersex individual, won the top prizes — Best Picture and Best Director, respectively — at the recently concluded Cinema One Originals film festival.

Enjoy music on YouTube without ads interrupting

VIDEO-SHARING platform YouTube has finally brought YouTube Music and YouTube Premium to the Philippines. Both are paid subscription services for ad-free streaming alongside other features and original content.

Shangri-la mall’s Gourmet Fest back this weekend

SHANGRI-LA Plaza brings the Gourmet Fest back for a second year with 27 restaurants presenting “the many textures and flavors of [the mall’s] well-curated gastronomic selections,” according to a press release.

Signal Rock, Liway get most Luna Awards nominations

THE FILM Academy of the Philippines (FAP) and the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) have announced the nominees for the 37th Luna Awards, to be given on Nov. 30 at the Maybank Performing Arts Theater in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig.

Reclaiming Maria Clara

SINGER-SONGWRITER Abby Asistio is back with a new song about reclaiming the meaning of the term “Maria Clara” for the Filipinas of today.

Want to try ube, pili, and lambanog chocolates?

SPECIALTY Filipino chocolate brand Manila Chocolatier, known for its penchant for combining Filipino flavors with Filipino chocolate, is now available in select Kultura branches nationwide.

Ely Buendia holds concert based on musical Ang Huling El Bimbo

MUSICIAN and former The Eraserheads frontman Ely Buendia is “trying his hand at something new” with a solo concert on Dec. 8 at the Newport Performing Arts Theater in Resorts World Manila (RWM), Pasay City.

Hungarian film fest sets sights outside Metro Manila

NOW IN its third year, the Hungarian Film Festival (HUFF) is expanding its reach to cities outside Metro Manila as it tries to “present the essence of Hungarian cinema to more and more Filipinos in Cebu and Davao,” according to a press release.

TV special, app features mark Lazada’s 11/11 sale

ASIDE from a TV special on the night before the e-commerce platform’s biggest sale of the year, Lazada also announced several new features to make the app a “lifestyle destination,” according to a Philippine executive.

The rewards and perils for brands latching on to issues

BRANDS CONNECTING to an issue or a purpose they are passionate about and making it into a marketing campaign is a trend that a Twitter regional executive said exploded in the past two years as more and more users look for authenticity in marketing.

Shopee pushes 11/11 sale with TV special

SINGAPOREAN e-commerce platform Shopee is gearing up for its biggest sale of the year on Nov. 11 with a TV special the night before on GMA Network, featuring performances from the network’s biggest stars.

New Greenhills hotel is prototype for other Summit properties

THE SIXTH Summit Hotel has opened its doors in the bustling city of San Juan, ideally located near the famous Greenhills Shopping Center and near enough (traffic permitting) to city centers like Cubao, Ortigas, and Makati. But what sets Summit Hotel Greenhills apart from other locations is that it is a symbol of what soon will be trademarks of the Summit Hotel brand.

The Final Pitch focuses on real estate for its 5th season

BUSINESS reality show The Final Pitch launches its 5th season with the theme, “Real Estate and Livable Cities,” a marked departure from its usual theme-less seasons where assorted start-ups pitch their way to a probable investment.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas

NOW THAT Halloween and All Saints’ Day are out of the way, it’s officially time for Christmas -- though one might argue that in the Philippines, Christmas begins at the start of September (and maybe even the last week of August). And to celebrate and spread the holiday cheer, Rustan’s has lit up its flagship store windows in Makati, with decorations revolving around the theme of “The Sweetest Christmas.”

I like these

IN the past few months, I have practically overhauled my skincare routine save for a few staples because there have been a lot of good releases this year. So unlike my other reviews that usually contain products I liked and products I don’t like, this one is focused on the new products I have incorporated in my skincare routine.

Food and relationships at the center of new HBO Asia series

IN ITS SECOND anthology series, HBO Asia presents eight episodes from eight Asian countries telling stories about their connection to food. The pilot episode, Island of Dreams, directed by the Philippines’ Erik Matti from the Philippines, presents a tale of a woman who searches for a better life than what her small island offers.

Sony Pictures acquires Yellow Rose starring Noblezada, Salonga

SONY PICTURES Worldwide Acquisitions (SPWA), the acquisition arm of Sony Pictures Entertainment, has announced that they have bought worldwide rights (excluding the Philippines) of Fil-Am director Diane Paragas’ debut feature, Yellow Rose.

Four directorial debuts in Cinema One film fest’s lineup

“ORIGINALITY in all its permutations” is the enduring battle cry of the now 15-year-old Cinema One Originals Film Festival as it continues to present films that challenge audiences to experience something “that goes beyond cinema, beyond cinephilia, beyond entertainment.” And with that mantra, the festival is presenting eight films from various genres from horror to the tried-and-tested romantic comedy.

All reality shows all the time

THERE’S A new streaming service on the block and this time it’s focused on making sure people get their daily dose of reality drama — from Keeping Up With the Kardashians to Vanderpump Rules — from NBCUniversal and it’s called Hayu.

Blind audition highlight of new competition show

IN 2011, The Voice popularized blind auditions with judges hearing contestants without actually seeing them. If sufficiently impressed, the judges would turn their chairs and see the contestant for the first time. The concept was so popular that it became a franchise — the Philippine has its own version that has been running for several years. This year, ABS-CBN is making a case for a revolving set in Your Moment, where the judges and the audience will switch stages to see contestants perform.

Time looks different with Reservoir

THE FACT that its horological instruments are inspired by vintage meters from cars, a submarine, and a plane, is what separates the young French-based, Swiss-made Reservoir from other watch brands. That and its “affordable luxury” pricing -- which does not mean skimping on fine watchmaking.

SM stores embrace K-beauty with new section

DUE TO the current popularity of Korean skincare and beauty, the SM Store Beauty Section has decided to delegate space for curating and showcasing available Korean -- and Asian -- brands in all of their 68 branches nationwide.

Stop-motion film wins QCinema

GLENN BARIT’S debut feature Cleaners, a stop-motion film made from photocopied stills, won QCinema International Film Festival’s top award along with the Best Screenplay and the Audience Choice Awards during the awarding ceremony held on Oct. 18 at the Novotel Manila Araneta Center in Quezon City.

PHL, Malaysia ban Abominable

FOLLOWING VIETNAM’s lead in banning DreamWork’s animated feature Abominable over a scene showing China’s controversial “nine-dash line map,” the Philippines and Malaysia have also banned the film from showing in their cinemas.

Serums are bestsellers at Kiehl’s

AMERICAN beauty brand Kiehl’s is ending 2019 by focusing on its bestselling serum line -- from a serum which corrects dark spots to a serum which reduces fine lines and wrinkles with the power of Vitamin C -- which its Philippine product manager says is an indication that Filipinos are now learning about what products will work for their skin type and needs.

Uniqlo goes Brit with a new JW Anderson collaboration

FOR ITS fourth collaboration with Japanese apparel brand Uniqlo, British design brand JW Anderson takes inspiration from the “great British outdoors,” by offering “traditional British elements” blended with “modern designs” according to a press release.

MMFF’s final four films named

A PERIOD film about women looking for the cure for leprosy, a feel-good romantic comedy, a Brillante Ma. Mendoza film, and Rodel “Coco Martin” Nacianceno’s second feature film complete this year’s Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) lineup as the final entries chosen from among finished film submissions.

8 PHL films join Tokyo International Film Festival

EIGHT FILMS form this year’s Philippine contingent at the 32nd Tokyo International Film Festival including Paul Soriano’s Mañanita which will be featured in the Competition section of the festival, and Bradley Liew’s Motel Acacia which will be included in the Asian Future section.

’50s-style piece tops song tilt

MABAGAL” by Dan Tañedo, a slow song with a 1950s feel, was named this year’s Best Song at the Himig Handog Songwriting Competition, besting “over 4,000 entries,” according to a press release.

Orama Minimal Frames enters PHL market

GREEK company Orama Minimal Frames has entered the Philippines, as it seeks to address the “huge, untapped market” for minimalist windows and frames.

Gen. Malvar’s great-grandson opposes upcoming film

A FILM about the life of General Miguel Malvar, the last general of the First Philippine Republic to surrendered to the American forces during the Philippine-American War, is facing opposition from the late general’s family with a great-grandson saying that they were not consulted regarding the biopic and that they initially thought the film was “fake news.”