'Aurora' director under fire over showing of banned film

By Boy Villasanta, abs-cbnNEWS.com

Posted at Apr 30 2009 11:55 AM | Updated as of Apr 30 2009 08:05 PM

The Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) has asked the director of Rosanna Roces’ film, “Aurora,” to explain why the uncut version of the movie was shown at the University of the Philippines without the permission from the board.

The independent movie was classified unfit for public viewing by the MTRCB but it was shown just the same at the UP Film Institute (UPFI) Cine Adarna in January.

The MTRCB said the film was screened for commercial gain and without the corresponding permit to exhibit from the body, which is a violation of Section 7 of the Presidential Decree No. 1986.

The MTRCB has already instructed director Adolf Alix Jr. to submit his counter-affidavit to explain his side. 

Alix will probably submit his counter-affidavit before he leaves for Cannes International Film Festival in France to attend the special screening of his film, “Manila.” He co-directed “Manila” with another Cannes-bound filmmaker, Raya Martin.

Filmmaker Sean Lim, the representative of Oxin Entertainment, had already submitted his counter-affidavit to the MTRCB. Oxin Entertainment is the company that released Roces’ film.

Lim, in his written testimony, said the film was part of an educational screening at the UPFI and the scheduled showing was under the pretext of the state university’s aim in promoting academic freedom.

Meanwhile, following the MTRCB’s move to question the showing of “Aurora” as well as “Sagwan” and “Strictly Confidential” at the UPFI, the planned screening for “Adela” and “Mona, Singapore Escort” has been aborted.

“To think that they’re all educational in nature and not sexually oriented films,” said Nonoy Lauzon, one of the respected members of the academe-based critics group, Young Critics Circle.

“Adela” is an award-winning creation of Alix while “Mona, Singapore Escort” is a digital film blown to 35mm by filmmaker Jowee Morel.