ERIK MATTI’s “ON THE JOB: THE MISSING 8” Showing at VENICE FILM FEST September; Star DENNIS TRILLO Attending the Event

In 2013 Star Cinema released an action drama film that completely contrasted their usual fare of rom-coms and big-budget blockbusters. “On the Job” was the brainchild of director Erik Matti and co-writer Michiko Yamamoto, about the seedy underbelly of crime and political corruption seen through the eyes of imprisoned convicts temporarily released to perform contract killings and rewarded by politicians and other societal elites. The movie got some serious nods from international film festivals, and it was assured of a sequel by Matti, produced during the pandemic. Its first premiere will be at the Venice International Film Festival, with its lead actor attending the event.

GMA News reports that actor Dennis Trillo is making plans to travel to Italy next month where the Venice International Film Festival will exhibit “On the Job: The Missing 8,” Erik Matti’s sequel to his 2013 crime noir sleeper hit “On the Job.” The VIFF has made known its list of film entries back in July, with the theme of this year’s film fest being “Cinema at the Time of COVID.” As for Trillo, his travel papers are being processed so he could make the trip in time for the festival period of September 1-11.

Having the movie make its debut in an international film-fest echoes the journey of its predecessor, which was exhibited first at the 2013 Cannes Film Fest, receiving a two-minute standing ovation from its audience even if it won no prizes. Matti noted back in June that having “On the Job: The Missing 8” do likewise will help gauge viewer reception to the 3-hour-28-minute film (originally conceptualized as a multi-episode streaming limited series), and determine if dividing the running time into two movies would work for local audiences once cinemas reopen.

As for Dennis Trillo, he is happy that “On the Job: The Missing 8” will soon get to run on the big screen, because COVID-19 has kept Philippine theaters shut. “I’m happy that the film will not only premiere, but is also part of the competition,” says Trillo. “The fact that our movie is included is already a reward for all of us. The film also stars John Arcilla, Dante Rivero, Ricky Davao, Vandolph Quizon, Christopher De Leon and more. The film returns to the setting of a crime-ridden and corrupt Philippines with prisoners being hired by powerful figures to assassinate targets outside prison, with John Arcilla’s reporter character investigating the disappearances of his colleagues and Trillo portraying the crook temporarily freed to kill him.

Image courtesy of Esquire Philippines

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