Screening Place: Regional and Vernacular Cinemas in Cebu

The history of autonomous cultural production in the Philippines has been both blessed and cursed with a series of significant but contentious debates largely stemming from the nation’s historical battles with colonialism and how that experience problematized the concept of an easily definable national identity. Using geographical concepts surrounding place to open up new approaches to understanding local cultural production, this essay turns to Philippine cinema as a propaedeutic for this contested history and traces the emergence and difficulties of vernacular and regional cinemas in Cebu, Philippines.