The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines decries the pullout of the film “Walang Kasarian Ang Digmaang Bayan” from the 2020 Sinag Maynila Film Festival and support director Jay Altarejos’ demand for the organizers to come clean about the real reason for this deplorable move.

It is not enough to claim violation of rules without explaining what rules exactly were violated and how to warrant the pullout of a film that had already been accepted amd whose trailer had, in fact, already been released.

Absent this, the only logical conclusion would be that “Walang Kasarian Ang Digmaang Bayan” was given the boot because of its message, in short, CENSORED, a supreme irony for a festival supposed to be a showcase for independent films.

Neither does its supposed deviation from the approved screenplay hold much water. If anything, it comes out as an attempt to limit, if not stifle, creativity, again ironic for a festival of independent films, and again, CENSORSHIP.

We laud Altarejos’ principled stand against this sorry attempt to curtail his artistic freedom and his freedom of expression and join him in his vow: “Patuloy kaming makikipaglaban para sa tunay na kalayaan. Kalayaan sa pagpapahayag at kalayaan sa pamamahayag.”

National Directorate