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A list with media originating from, or involving, the Philippines.

Note: This list may include works or personalities coming from the Filipino diaspora—that is, Filipinos who live and/or regularly work outside the country. Much as with the Jews, the Chinese, the Irish or the Polish, the diaspora is an essential concept in Filipino society, with millions going abroad either to send back aid to their families or to migrate and seek greener pastures. As such, if a work is produced in a foreign country, but primarily by people of Filipino descent, the priority is to count it under "Filipino-created" media, rather than "foreign media about the Philippines/Filipinos".

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In addition, the list of Filipino characters and settings in foreign works may include examples not explicitly stated to be Filipino per se, but have strong implications or circumstantial evidence pointing to that conclusion (for instance, an Asian character with a Hispanic name, is Catholic, and comes from an unnamed tropical Asian country). If the general fan consensus, Word of God or not, agrees that the character or setting is most likely Filipino, then it may be considered on this list.


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    Media primarily created in the Philippines and/or by Filipinos, including in the diaspora 
Visual Artists & Architects
  • Juan Luna
    • Spoliarium
  • Fernando Amorsolo
  • Justiniano Asunción
  • Damian Domingo
  • José Honorato Lozano
  • Felix Resurrección Hidalgo
  • Vicente Manansala
  • Victorio Edades
  • Guillermo Tolentino
  • Isabelo Tampingco
  • Leandro V. Locsin
  • Andres Luna de San Pedro
  • Napoleon "Nap" Abueva
  • Benedicto "Bencab" Cabrera
  • José Joya
  • Abdulmari "Asia" Imao
  • Ramon Orlina
  • Igan D'bayan
  • Federico Aguilar Alcuaz
  • José Tence Ruiz

Performing Artists

Advertising

Manga and Anime

  • Love is in the Bag series
  • Barangay 143 (co-production with Japanese & Singaporean studios)
  • K.I.A. (local manga by Marco Dimaano)
  • Hinagunoy sa Goryon (Cebuano anime-style short film)
  • The planned Trese Animated Adaptation on Netflix.

Comedy

Comics

Film

Literature

  • Adarna House (publisher of children's books)
  • America is In the Heart (1946)
  • America Is Not the Heart (2018)
  • Apay a Pinatayda ni Naw Simón (1935; Ilokano-language, regarded as the country's first proper detective/espionage novel)
  • Bajo los Cocoteros
  • Bantugan
  • Ben Singkol
  • Biag ni Lam-ang (Ilokano epic)
  • Boxer Codex (c. 1590; illustrated guide depicting the precolonial Filipino natives)
  • The Butcher, The Baker, and the Candlestick Maker
  • But for the Lovers (1970)
  • A Child of Sorrow
  • The Code of Kalantiaw (once thought to be a code of laws for a precolonial kingdom notable for its cruel and unusual punishments, but since proven to be a hoax)
  • The Cry and the Dedication (Carlos Bulosan's last novel)
  • Darangen (Lanao epic)
  • "Dead Stars" (1925)
  • Dekada '70 (1982)
  • Desaparesidos
  • Doctrina Cristiana (one of the first known printed books in the islands—a Catholic catechism and prayer book, printed in woodblock)
  • Dogeaters
  • Doveglion (poetry collection by José Garcia Villa)
  • An Embarrassment of Riches
  • The Feet of Juan Bacnang
  • El Filibusterismo (1891)
  • Farah
  • Hard Times (children's book)
  • Florante at Laura (appeared in the late 1830s)
  • Gagamba
  • The Gangster of Love
  • Gapô
  • Gun Dealers' Daughter
  • Hinilawod (Ilonggo epic)
  • His Native Soil
  • The History of the Burgis (a satirical take on Philippine history, like a more mature version of the Horrible Histories series)
  • Ibalong (Bicolano epic)
  • Ibong Adarna (Catholic-lowlander epic)
  • Ilustrado (2010)
  • Insurrecto (2018)
  • In the Country (short story collection by Mia Alvar)
  • Indarapatra't Sulayman
  • Janus Silang series
  • Kapitan Sino
  • Killing Time in a Warm Place
  • Laguna Copperplate Inscription (900 C.E.)
  • The Man Who (Thought He) Looked Like Robert Taylor
  • Mga Kuwento ni Lola Basyang
  • My Sad Republic
  • Naermyth
  • Ninay (1885)
  • Noli Me Tangere (1887)
  • Para Kay B.
  • Pinaglahuan (1907)
  • Pilandok (children's book series)
  • The Quiet Ones (2017)
  • The Rosales Saga
  • Sherds
  • Si Amapola sa 65 na Kabanata ("Amapola, in 65 Chapters", 2011)
  • Sins
  • Smaller & Smaller Circles (2002; new edition 2015)
  • Shri-Bishaya (1969; Hiligaynon-language)
  • Soledad's Sister
  • Tagalog romance novellas/novelettes (and presumably romance novellas in other Philippine languages as well)
  • Toxicology
  • Viajero
  • Various Philippine Wattpad short novels (often written in urban Taglish)
  • Without Seeing The Dawn (1947)
  • The Woman Who Had Two Navels & Tales of the Tropical Gothic
    • "Candido's Apocalypse"
    • "The Summer Solstice"
    • "May Day Eve" (1947)
    • "Doña Jeronima"
    • "Guardia de Honor"
    • "The Legend of the Dying Wanton"
    • "Three Generations"
    • The Woman Who Had Two Navels (duh)
    • The Order of Melkizedek (1966)

Live-Action Series

Music note 

Sports

Tabletop Games

Television Stations

Theatre

Video Games and Visual Novels

  • The Letter
  • Anito: A Land Enraged
  • The Girl Who Sees (an indie game about a girl who, well, sees the supernatural)

Webcomics

Web Originals

"Western" Animation note 

  • Mutya (2009)
  • The Nutshack was an animated series intended for Filipino-American audiences; its main characters are Filipino-American. The show became infamous for its overall quality, especially its So Bad, It's Good theme song which reached Memetic Mutation, causing it to get an ironic following.

    Non-Philippine-related works by Filipinos in the diaspora 
Literature

    The Philippines or Filipinos in foreign media 
Anime and Manga
  • Blade had an episode set on the supernaturally active Siquijor island, and features Blade seeking the help of three indigenous hunters (Lupit, Cimarron, and Hagibis) to take down a manananggal (a winged, vampire-type creature that can split its body in half). Looks like Grimm wasn't the first one.
  • Black Lagoon mentioned and visited some Philippine places a few times. It's bound to happen given the characters are mainly based in a Southeast Asian Wretched Hive.
  • Though it's never stated outright, there's a strong implication that Maria from Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei is of Filipino origin, based on her Hispanic-Catholic given name, her dark complexion relative to her classmates, and a bio stating she's an illegal immigrant who sneaked into Japan from what's only described as a neighbouring, poverty-stricken, war-torn country.
  • Sucy Manbavaran from Little Witch Academia, one of Akko's close friends, who is also pretty strongly hinted to be Filipino: her Establishing Character Moment depicts her carrying a walis tambo— a flat, Philippine-style Flying Broomstick—and her last name is a modification of the Cebuano term mambabarang, one of the local terms for actual witches or practitioners of dark magic (specifically, those who summon insects and other vermin to plague their victims).

Art

  • The Manila Shawl, a 1911 painting by Henri Matisse, depicts a woman in a shawl made with light, translucent Manila fabric.

Comedy

  • Russell Peters has done a few Filipino jokes, mostly ribbing on their thick accents, the family tradition of forcing kids to sing and dance, and the similarity of Manila's heat and traffic to Indian cities. He also brought the Deported World Tour to Manila in March 2018.

Comics

Fan Worksnote 

  • Maaf, an Indonesian doujin in the style of Axis Powers Hetalia about the personifications of Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand, as well as all their colonisers. The mangaka devotes a lot of detail to the precolonial personifications of the Philippines, which she laments has lost most of its precolonial and indigenous culture and history due to the extreme influence of double colonisation by Spain and the U.S.

Film

  • Several American films about the American-Japanese battles in the Philippines, either the Japanese conquest of the islands in 1941-42 or the American return and re-conquest of the islands in 1944-45.
    • Manila Calling (1942)
    • Back to Bataan (1943)
    • Corregidor (1943)
    • So Proudly We Hail! (1943), focusing on Army nurses at Corregidor
    • They Were Expendable (1945)
    • American Guerrilla in the Philippines (1950)
    • I Was An American Spy (1951)
    • Operation Petticoat (1959)
    • The Great Raid (2005)
  • Also (mostly) relatively unknown American films on the equally unknown Philippine-American War, including:
    • Under the Yoke (1918), a lost silent film
    • Across the Pacific (1926), another lost silent film
    • Come On, Marines! (1934)
    • The Real Glory (1939)
  • Huk! (1956)
  • Daughters of Satan (1972), an American Gothic Horror film set in Manila, starring a really young Tom Selleck, and involving witchcraft and a Creepy Changing Painting. Also starred some veteran Filipino actors of the era, including most notably Paraluman, a famous mestiza leading lady who rose to stardom in The '50s.
  • A Dangerous Life (1988)
  • The Bloodfist saga (1989–2005), about an American dojo sensei who goes to Manila to avenge his kickboxing brother
  • Romantic Island (2008), about three pairs of South Koreans visiting Manila and Boracay island for different reasons
  • Pinoy Sunday (2009), about two Overseas Filipino Workers' adventures in Taipei, Taiwan
  • The Bourne Legacy (2012) had a significant sequence set in Manila—in-universe, the headquarters of a pharmaceutical corporation connected to the CIA's Super Soldier program. There's also a sailing scene set in the waters around Palawan island.
  • Ilo Ilo (2013), an award-winning Singaporean film about the Filipina maid/nanny of a Singaporean family from the author's past. The film is named for her province of origin.
  • Metro Manila (2013), a British production starring a poor provincial family coming to, well, Metro Manila (the nation's capital), seeking work.
  • Los últimos de Filipinas (Spain, two versions: 1945, 2016)—about the Spanish empire's last stand against the Filipino Revolutionaries of 1898, at the Siege of Baler.
  • Rosita (2016), a Danish production starring Filipina actress Mercedes Cabral as the eponymous Rosita, a mail-order bride to an older Danish guy. It gets complicated when the guy's son (who acts as an interpreter between Rosita and his dad) also starts to develop an attraction to her.

Literature

  • Life in the East Indies (1872), by William Henry Thomes
  • Caybigan (1906), by James Hopper
  • The very little-known Romance & Adventure in Old Manila (1928), a collection of short stories by Walter J. Robb and based on the manuscripts of Percy A. Hill. Both men were American colonials living and working in the Philippines under U.S. rule. Interestingly, most of the stories are about Spanish-era Manila, with most of the cast of characters being colonial governors, friars, military men, dons and doñas and other Hispanic grandees.
  • Jo Gar franchise (1930s), a short story collection by Raoul Whitfield about a Filipino private eye operating during the U.S. colonial era proper, between 1898 and 1946
  • The Sulu Sea Murders (1933), by Van Wyck Mason
  • "The Filipino and the Drunkard" (1935), a very short story by William Saroyan depicting, well, a Filipino boy working in California, trying to escape from a very drunk, and very racist, white man.
  • The 1936 pulp novel on which Double Indemnity was based originally featured a nameless Filipino houseboy. Naturally, he was cut out from the film.
  • Reflections in a Golden Eye (1941), a novel by Carson McCullers, featured as a supporting character a Filipino houseboy named Anacleto. The first paragraph in the story, in fact, concludes with this line:
    The participants of this tragedy were: two officers, a soldier, two women, a Filipino, and a horse.
  • Fires on the Plain (1951), a Japanese novel about the experiences of a soldier in the Imperial Japanese Army stranded in a Philippine jungle in the last days of World War II.
  • Fortress in the Rice (1951, edited and re-released 1960) by Benjamin Appel, about the Huk rebellion by the Filipino masses; first against the Japanese invaders and later against U.S.-backed local oligarchs and national government
  • Plunder (1952), by Benjamin Appel, about two American gangsters in early postwar Manila
  • The Ugly American (1958), a novel about the Cold War's effects on Southeast Asia, featured one chapter set in the then-Third Republic Philippines, where all the politicians were Hispanic in name and disposition and American in ideology and leaning, and where a No Celebrities Were Harmed version of CIA manipulator Col. Edward Lansdale proves such a riot among his little brown brothers, who immediately tag him "The Ragtime Kid" as a term of affection.
  • Starship Troopers (1959)—it's not popularly known that the protagonist, Juan "Johnnie" Rico, was actually Filipino. The movie whitewashed him into a white Argentine.
  • Pieces of the Game (1960), by Lee Gifford, involving a search for buried WWII treasure in Manila Bay
  • Amok (1978), by George Fox
  • The Blue Afternoon (1993)
  • Biggest Elvis (1996), a novel set in the Red Light District town of Olongapo near the (former) U.S. (neo)colonial Subic naval base, and focusing on three Elvis impersonators.
  • The Tesseract (1998)
  • Cryptonomicon (1999), by Neal Stephenson
  • My Hollywood (2010), by Mona Simpson, had as a major supporting character a Filipina nanny named, confusingly, Lola (in the Philippines, "Lola" is not a given name—not a common one, anyway—but the local term for "Grandma"), who gets hired to take care of the main character, a classical composer, and her son.
  • A Moment in the Sun (2011 novel by John Sayles, also director of Amigo; the novel also spends much time in Cuba, Alaska, and other places across the continental United States)
  • Moondogs (2011) is a crime/action thriller by Alexander Yates with supernatural elements, revolving around the kidnapping of an American businessman in the Philippines. Yates did grow up there and worked at the U.S. Embassy in Manila, but he is Caucasian with solidly American origins, and studied at the University of Virginia.
  • Sugar Sun period romance series by Jennifer Hallock, and related novellas
  • Avenue of Mysteries (2015), by John Irving, has its Mexican author-protagonist Juan Diego take an extended stay in the Philippines to fulfil a promise to a childhood friend.
  • The Crazy Rich Asians trilogy features a few, though they're not terribly front-and-center, including the Ayala couple in China Rich Girlfriend (presumably based on the Real Life Ayala family in the Philippines, of Spanish-Basque descent), and one chapter in a Filipino oligarch's house and another set in Palawan island in Rich People Problems. Trivia 
  • H+ Incorporated (2018), by Gary Dejean, is set in a Dystopian-future Manila (though it's not like it's not dystopian now).
  • One of the main character circle in The Gilded Wolves (due out 2019) by YA author Roshani Chokshi is Enrique, a Spanish-Filipino ilustrado (intellectual) living in Paris in 1889.
  • Brief Chronicle of Another Stupid Heartbreak (due out 2019), by YA author Adi Alsaid, has a Filipino-American main character.

Live-Action TV

  • Café Americain, a largely forgotten 1990s sitcom on NBC, had as part of its main cast a deposed dictator's wife named Madame Ybarra, a close Expy of Imelda Marcos. Even without knowing the Real Life inspiration, one could assume that Madame Ybarra may be canonically Filipino to begin with, since she was played by an Asian note  but had a Spanish/Basque last name (though it's probably her husband's). note 
    • Of course, it's also entirely possible that the creators simply invented a Fictional Counterpart of the Philippines instead, with stand-in place names as well as people names. The specifics of Madame Ybarra's country of origin don't appear to be terribly essential to the story except as supporting comic relief, so historical or geographical accuracy was probably not a going concern.
  • The Chinese series The Legend of Bruce Lee prominently featured Dan Inosanto, the Fil-Am martial arts instructor and legend who became one of Bruce Lee's mentors. Much of the show was also rather fictionalised, however, notably introducing a sort of "stand-in" Filipina character, a big fan of Bruce Lee who almost became a Love Interest, and who was only ever addressed by her (presumably) last name, Arroyo. note 
  • One of the main characters on Grimm was the Chinese-Filipino-Americannote  Sergeant Wu, whose actor Reggie Lee has a similar background. In the episode "Mommy Dearest", S3E14, he encounters an aswang, a Filipino supernatural creature in some ways akin to a vampire.
  • The short-lived series Powerless's main protagonist, Emily Locke, played by Vanessa Hudgens, is canonically half-Filipino, as brought up in an episode dealing with accidental racist jokes, involving a black Atlantean whom she misheard as being from Atlanta. (In Real Life, she does have Filipino blood, among others.)
  • Crazy Ex-Girlfriend has Josh Chan, the Filipino-American leading man to whom Rebecca is the show's eponymous "crazy ex-girlfriend".
  • The Good Place has Jason Mendoza, an Asian Airhead DJ posing as an unspeaking Buddhist monk named Jianyu.
  • Superstore has Mateo Liwanag, who's both Filipino and gay.
  • Make It Pop has Fil-Canadian Louriza Tronco playing Jodi Mapa (or Mappa). It's assumed Jodi has at least some Filipino blood as well, though all that's confirmed is that she's part-Jewish.
  • Lulu, played by Ashley Argota, on True Jackson, VP, but like with Jodi in Make it Pop above, it's not clear whether Lulu is Filipino in-universe.
  • Glee once featured a Filipina exchange student named Sunshine Corazon—played by pop star Jake Zyrus, at the time known as Charice prior to coming out as a transgender man.
  • A two-episode arc in Season 2 of the Spanish series The Ministry of Time depicts time-travellers witnessing and participating in the 1898 Siege of Baler (but from the Spanish side, natch—as with Los últimos de Filipinas, as previously mentioned).
  • One episode in Madam Secretary featured a state visit from a Philippine president whose rough mannerisms were very clearly patterned on those of the current (as of this writing) President, Rodrigo Duterte.
  • Parodies of Filipino characters on Saturday Night Live:
    • The 1987 season had white actress Jan Hooks satirising then-Philippine President Corazon "Cory" Aquino.
    • The 1988 season then satirised Imelda Marcos, wife of ex-dictator Ferdinand Marcos (a few years before her lampooning in Café Americain). Also played by a white actress (Nora Dunn).
    • The parody of the 2016 U.S. vice-presidential debates had Latina comedian Melissa Villaseñor playing Elaine Quijano, the Filipino-American debate moderator.
  • Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown once featured a Manila episode with all the expected Filipino food. It's all the more relevant for Anthony Bourdain because he has close family friends from there (and who will no doubt be missing him now). Plus, his trying the local fast-food chain Jollibee has become something of a Memetic Mutation.
  • Singaporean thriller P. I. stars Filipina celebrity Karylle as a pole-dancing Private Detective named Maia Yap. She could just about pass for a Singaporean, but it's mentioned her dad's based in Tagaytay, making it likely that she's at least Chinese-Filipino in-universe.
  • Season 2 of American Crime Story is Based on a True Story of the murder of fashion designer Gianni Versace by the Filipino-American Andrew Cunanan.
  • S1E5 of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, on Netflix, depicts the Batibat, a sleep demon from Ilocano folklore that sits on sleepers and gives them nightmares. The The term "Batibat" is treated as the name of this individual sleep demon however, rather than as the generic name for the type of demon.note  The backstory is that Edward Spellman imprisoned this Batibat in an arcane puzzle … which Sabrina solves years later, causing the demon to attempt a break-out.

Theatre

  • The Sultan of Sulu, about, well, the Sultan of Sulu, ruler of an Islamic kingdom in the southern Philippines. They weren't touched much by Spanish colonialism, but the Americans on the other hand … The play is in fact about the U.S. colonial invasion of Sulu, only Played for Laughs.
  • Across the pond, the British Florodora is about, and named for, a tropical flower growing on a fictitious Philippine island, which also gave its name to the commercial perfume produced in a local factory.

Video Games

Webcomics

  • Malaya, the main character of How To Be A Werewolf, and her brother Vincent, are half-Filipino from her mother's side. Truth in Television: Mighty Whitey and Mellow Yellow pairings like their parents is actually not an uncommon pairing.
  • On Bloody Urban, which includes vampires and other supernatural creatures, supporting character Shaun is an aswang, as evidenced by his long bloodsucking proboscis. Also predates Grimm's depiction by some years. Notably sort of an inversion of the case in How To Be A Werewolf, wherein a partly-Filipino character becomes a (generally) Western mythical creature, while here the creature himself is of a type "endemic" to the Philippines.

Web Original

  • The Aswang Project, a website and YouTube channel documenting Philippine mythology started and mostly run by the Canadian Jordan Clark.

Western Animation


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