Santos’ Diplomacy Through Film

from left: Amb Gilles Garachon confers the Legion of Honor to FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: Amb Gilles Garachon confers the Legion of Honor to FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

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Written and photographed

By Jude Bautista

French Amb Gilles Garachon said, “The Legion of Honor is the oldest French Medal, is in fact a knighthood. It means the best of the best friends of France. The creator of this medal is the French Emperor Napoleon in 1802. That is the oldest one and the highest-ranking Medal of Honor. We are very, very proud and happy to give this to Briccio (Santos).”

4th and 5th from left is Amb Gilles Garachon and Chevalier Briccio Santos From left: Peachy Prieto, Joey Tambunting, Bianca Santos, Leon Araneta, Karla Delgado, Kai Yulo and Mme. Isabelle Garachon. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

4th and 5th from left is Amb Gilles Garachon and Chevalier Briccio Santos From left: Peachy Prieto, Joey Tambunting, Bianca Santos, Leon Araneta, Karla Delgado, Kai Yulo and Mme. Isabelle Garachon. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

The speech was delivered in a ceremony where Amb Garachon conferred the Legion d’honneur (Legion of Honor) to Film Development Council Chairman Briccio Santos. It was held last October 24, 2013 at the French Residence in Makati. Garachon will also confer the Order of Arts & Letters Rank of Chevalier for filmmaker Brillante Mendoza. He is the only Filipino to win Best Director at Cannes for KINATAY (2009). His latest film SAPI starring Dennis Trillo, Meryl Soriano and Baron Geisler will be shown in theaters on November 6, 2013.

from left: Amb Gilles Garachon confers the Legion of Honor to FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: Amb Gilles Garachon confers the Legion of Honor to FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) Chairman Briccio Santos is credited for the creation of the National Film Archive and the establishment of Cinematheques across the country. Cinematheques are multi purpose cinemas where internationally acclaimed Pinoy indie films can be screened. They also conduct filmmaking seminars by successful directors, writers and industry professionals in cities like Baguio, Iloilo, Davao and Marawi.

2nd from left Amb Gilles Garachon, from left Marixi and Alex Prieto and Rose Agustines. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

2nd from left Amb Gilles Garachon, from left Marixi and Alex Prieto and Rose Agustines. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

Briccio Santos responded, “Mr. Ambassador thank you for this honor. You have my deepest assurance that I will do my very best to be worthy of the distinction that your country through you have bestowed on me tonight. We will continue to embrace the corridors of culture to enrich this lasting relationship between our two countries.”

from left: French Amb Gilles Garachon, DFA Asst Sec. European Affairs Zeneida Angara-Collinson, Chevalier Briccio Santos and Madame Isabelle Garachon. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: French Amb Gilles Garachon, DFA Asst Sec. European Affairs Zeneida Angara-Collinson, Chevalier Briccio Santos and Madame Isabelle Garachon. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

Filipinos who have previously been given the Legion of Honor include President Corazon Aquino, General Carlos P. Romulo, Teodoro Benigno, Jose De Venecia, Max Soliven and Aurelio “Gigi” Montinola III.

from left: CCP Pres. Raul Suñico, Chevalier Briccio Santos and Bettina Osmeña. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: CCP Pres. Raul Suñico, Chevalier Briccio Santos and Bettina Osmeña. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

Last year’s recipient of the Legion of Honor in the Philippines is Jewelmer Managing Director Jacques Branellec. He has established the Save Palawan Seas Foundation, which aims to protect the marine life, environment and the communities in Palawan. Whenever he goes out of the country he promotes not just the products of Jewelmer but the Philippines as a whole in terms of tourism and investments.

from left: Cinemanila founder Tikoy Aguiluz, IBC Pres. Lito Ocampo Cruz and French Audio Visual Attaché Martin Macalintal. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: Cinemanila founder Tikoy Aguiluz, IBC Pres. Lito Ocampo Cruz and French Audio Visual Attaché Martin Macalintal. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

FILM CULTURAL EXCHANGE PROGRAM

In 2010, FDCP Chairman Santos established the Film Cultural Exchange Program, which assists countries in exhibiting their films in venues such as the Shang Cineplex of Shangri La Plaza Mall. Foreign films in festivals such as Cine Europa, Eiga Sai, Silent Film Festival, Spring Film Festival, Asian film fest, Taiwan film fest retain the censorship ratings from their native countries. All aforementioned fests can be seen in Shang Plaza. As part of the FCEP they no longer have to go through the MTRCB screening process.

2nd and 3rd from left Amb Gilles Garachon, FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos with from left: Peachy Prieto and Mme Isabelle Garachon. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

2nd and 3rd from left Amb Gilles Garachon, FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos with from left: Peachy Prieto and Mme Isabelle Garachon. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

Recent programs have grown beyond the FCEP. Santos explains, “We have the genre film festival in September 2014. We’ll have 400 cinemas for the festival. We’re hoping it will be 2 weeks this time. For the Genre film festival we are now choosing among the hundreds of scripts that was submitted to us. With that we will be choosing about 12.”

from left: Deputy Executive Sec. Teofilo S. Pilando, FDCP Exec Dir Teddy Granados, ON THE JOB Producer Dondon Monteverde and Phil. Film Export Service Office Exec Dir. Jose Miguel Dela Rosa. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: Deputy Executive Sec. Teofilo S. Pilando, FDCP Exec Dir Teddy Granados, ON THE JOB Producer Dondon Monteverde and Phil. Film Export Service Office Exec Dir. Jose Miguel Dela Rosa. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

Santos also had a recent trip to Spain expanding the cultural and film relations with Madre España. These meetings may help deepen our country’s ties with the Latin speaking countries. The Philippines is in the unique position of being the only Asian country that has a strong Latin influence. Santos sees this as a possibility for us to be a hub or gateway for Latin American countries to Asia and vice versa.

and French Press Attaché Camille Conde. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

and French Press Attaché Camille Conde. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

According to him even Chabacano is a modern day link to our Latin roots. As evidence of the growing ties countries like Brazil and Argentina will also be invited for the IFX or International Film Expo next year.

Santos explained his optimism, “The Philippines will become the hub, the gateway to all these countries because of our history, strategic location and our proficiency in English. Same thing with France we are close to them in a lot of ways because they are very active in Southeast Asia. What we need to do is open up to make our country prominent center. Remember when you’re going to other countries if you want to have an expo or anything like that, you will have to pay thousands of dollars for your per diem. Here for a thousand dollars kasama na hotel mo, and then everybody speaks English.”

from left: French Cultural Counselor Michel Stanislas Villar, Teddy Boy Locsin, FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos and Tony Roces. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: French Cultural Counselor Michel Stanislas Villar, Teddy Boy Locsin, FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos and Tony Roces. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

Santos also sees a time when the Philippines can be a coordinating film hub for ASEAN, “It will be regional, not bilateral, but multilateral. It will be a win-win for all. We don’t have to compete with each other; we reinforce each other. Film is different these days you have to take it to the next level. There are new platforms. We’re also working to have a national studio here. Its all accelerating you will see these things come to fruition next year.”

from left: Phil Star Columnist Philip Cu-Unjieng, French Cultural Attaché Ariane Tricaud and French Press Attaché Camille Conde. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

from left: Phil Star Columnist Philip Cu-Unjieng, French Cultural Attaché Ariane Tricaud and French Press Attaché Camille Conde. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

Santos is very proud of the FDCP as a whole. He also mentioned their accounting office has been recognized as one of the year’s Most Outstanding Accounting Offices in the National Government Sector for the second year in a row by the Association of Government Accountants of the Philippines (AGAP).

This marks the second time that the FDCP’s accounting office has been chosen by the Commission on Audit (COA) due to the office’s quality, timeliness, and accuracy in completing financial reports.

4th and 3rd from right: Amb Gilles Garachon, FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos, from left: Quintin Cu-Unjieng, Sarge Lacuesta, FDCP Programmer Nonoy Lauzon, Phil. Film Export Service Office Exec Dir. Jose Miguel Dela Rosa and FDCP Exec. Dir Teddy Granados. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

4th and 3rd from right: Amb Gilles Garachon, FDCP Chairman Briccio Santos, from left: Quintin Cu-Unjieng, Sarge Lacuesta, FDCP Programmer Nonoy Lauzon, Phil. Film Export Service Office Exec Dir. Jose Miguel Dela Rosa and FDCP Exec. Dir Teddy Granados. Photo was taken last October 24, 2013 at the official French Ambassador’s residence in Makati. Photo by Jude Bautista

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