Amid online backlash, the Philippine distributor of the Spanish-produced animated film, Elcano and Magellan: The First Voyage Around the World, has decided to reevaluate the movie’s local release.
In a statement sent to media outlets on Friday, CrystalSky Multimedia said that it has heard the public’s sentiments on the movie originally scheduled to screen in Philippine cinemas in January 2020.
“After careful thought and consideration, we have decided to reevaluate the movie. We are in the process of inviting historians, members of the academe and film experts to a film preview. We will base our next steps and actions on their comments and recommendations,” said the distributor’s statement.
A source said that the preview will happen as early as next week. The negative reactions to the film have not yet reached the Spanish producers. “We will know in the coming weeks,” the source added.
A Variety report said that the film was co-produced by Spain’s Dibulitoon Studio and Barton Films to coincide with the 500th anniversary of the start of Elcano and Magellan’s circumnavigation of the world.
Since the release of promotional materials including poster and trailers, several Filipino netizens criticized the film for its alleged historical inaccuracies, including how colonizers are depicted as “heroes” while locals, particularly the Visayan hero Lapu-Lapu, as “villain”.