Drug war documentary big winner at FAMAS awards

ASWANG, Alyx Ayn Arumpac’s documentary on the horrors of the Duterte Administration’s drug war juxtaposed with the shape-shifting monster found in Filipino folklore, was the night’s biggest winner at the Filipino Academy of Movie Arts and Sciences (FAMAS) Awards, winning both Best Picture and Best Documentary alongside technical awards for Best Cinematography and Best Editing.

The film was awarded Best Picture for its “painful examination of current realities, and a sober reminder that cinema is a powerful social mirror,” read the jury’s citation. The awards night was held online on the FAMAS Facebook and YouTube pages on December 20.

Aswang‘s Best Picture win marks the first time in the history of the FAMAS awards that a documentary won the night’s top award.

The FAMAS awards is considered the oldest existing award-giving body in the Philippines and one of the oldest in Asia, having started in 1953. The awards are given by the Filipino Academy of Movie Arts and Sciences, an organization composed of writers and movie columnists.

The night’s other big winner was a crime drama on domestic abuse, Verdict, which won Best Director for Raymund Ribay Guttierez, Best Actor for Kristofer King (an honor he shared with Kalel, 15‘s Elijah Canlas), and Best Supporting Actress for Dolly de Leon.


Rae Red’s crime thriller Babae at Baril also took home several awards including Best Actress for Janine Guttierez, Best Musical Score for Nerrika Salim and Immanuel Verona, and Best Production Design for Eero Yves Francisco.

Below is the complete list of winners at 2020 edition of the FAMAS Awards:

Best Picture: Aswang

Best Director: Raymund Ribay Gutierrez (Verdict)

Best Actress: Janine Gutierrez (Babae at Baril)

Best Actor: Elijah Canlas (Kalel, 15) and Kristofer King (Verdict)

Best Supporting Actress: Dolly de Leon (Verdict)

Best Supporting Actor: Ricky Davao (Fuccbois)

Best Documentary: Aswang

Best Short Film: Tokwifi

Best Screenplay: Glenn Barit (Cleaners)

Best Cinematography: Alyx Arumpac and Tanya Haurylchyk (Aswang)

Best Editing: Fatima Bianchi and Anne Fabini (Aswang)

Best Musical Score: Nerrika Salim and Immanuel Verona (Babae at Baril)

Best Sound: Jet Leyco and Brian Gonzales (My Alien Friend)

Best production design: Eero Yves Francisco (Babae at Baril)

The Fernando Poe Jr. Memorial Award: Angel Locsin

The German Moreno Youth Achievement Award: Liza Soberano and Matteo Guidicelli

The Dolphy King of Comedy Award: Pokwang

The Dr. Jose Vera Perez Memorial Award: Boy Abunda

The FAMAS 2020 Advocacy Directing Award: Neil “Buboy” Tan

The FAMAS Lifetime Achievement Awardees: Ricky Lee (scriptwriting), Rox Lee (alternative cinema), and Armida Siguion-Reyna (industry development) — Zsarlene B. Chua


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