MANILA, Philippines – A lawmaker is proposing a bill that would require the addition of subtitles to Filipino films in an effort to make watching local movies more convenient to foreign visitors.
House Bill 6228, authored by Pasay City Rep. Emi Calixto-Rubiano, mandates local filmmakers to provide English subtitles to films that will be shown in major shopping malls and other cinemas in the country.
If passed, the Film Development Council of the Philippines will implement the bills’ rules and regulations.
“The increasing number of foreign tourists in the country, notably Koreans and Chinese, were commonly seen watching local films together with Filipino ‘chaperons’ acting as interpreters,” Calixto-Rubiano said in a statement. “But many of them do not have the luxury of having a ‘chaperon’ at all times to translate the film.”
“We are offering our foreign guests not only the opportunity to have a glimpse of what we can offer in terms of entertainment, but also the window to showcase our culture and some of our tourist spots as may be shown in the film,” she added.
Calixto-Rubiano noted that foreign visitors are not only interested in the country's natural wonders, but also in its history and culture.
“Travel agencies offering package trips make it a point to include historical sites and shopping malls, among others, as part of the menu-destinations,” she explained.
“Many of us may still be unaware that four among the top ten biggest shopping malls in the world are located in the Philippines, and included in the structural designs are at least six to 12 cinemas ready to cater both foreign and local films,” she added.
The bill shall cover films produced locally or abroad, which contain Filipino dialogue either entirely or in part.