Whereas “Ang mga Kaibigan ni Mama Susan” director Chito Roño and producer Roselle Monteverde stated they’d initially deliberate for the mystery-thriller film to be proven on the large display screen, they each admitted to being conscious of the drastic change within the viewing habits of the Filipino viewers after the pandemic.
“This was why we opted to have it launched by way of a streaming app,” stated Roselle, co-CEO of Regal Leisure, throughout a latest particular screening of the film starring Joshua Garcia and Angie Ferro.
The movie, primarily based on the 2010 thriller novel by Bob Ong, has been streaming on Prime Video since Might 18.
“The native viewers’s conduct and habits modified because of the pandemic. They now choose to simply keep at house. This was why streaming apps have develop into fashionable since 2020,” Roselle identified. “One other benefit of it’s that it caters to a a lot wider viewers. All of us thought it’s a greater choice as a result of individuals from different territories will have the ability to watch the movie, too.”
In the meantime, Chito stated he regretted that his masterpiece wouldn’t be proven in cinemas, “However I don’t thoughts that it didn’t make the lower of the final two MMFFs (Metro Manila Movie Festivals). I nonetheless choose for individuals to look at it in film theaters, it’s simply that I don’t have a say the place it might be proven. I’m simply its director,” he stated.
Joshua, who performs the lead character Galo, added: “I’m happy with our producer’s determination to launch it by way of streaming. It means quick access to those that need to see it anyplace they’re. In the event you’re at house, you may simply flip in your TV. You can too use your devices in the event you’re on the street,” he defined.
Chito then recalled the challenges they needed to face whereas capturing the film in 2020, through the strictest implementation of the pandemic lockdowns. “We truly began filming earlier than the pandemic so we have been in a position to shoot crowd scenes in a college. We first inquired a couple of location in Bataan province. After we returned there, the native authorities unit (LGU) stated it was now not permitting outsiders into its city. We needed to search for one other place that will accommodate us,” he stated.
“The home of Mama Susan needed to be modified, too. This was as a result of the FDCP (Movie Improvement Council of the Philippines) demanded that we inform them of our capturing schedules. Let’s not even discuss different LGUs we contacted and had already stated ‘sure,’ solely to show us down after a while. Capturing was nonetheless so tough again then,” the director added.
Chito additionally took notice of two solid members who had already shot most of their scenes, however later died of COVID-19 an infection. “They each died in April and we resumed capturing in June. In the event that they’re watching now, I hope they like what they’re seeing,” he instructed reporters.
Chito additionally stated he and novelist Bob Ong needed to make vital adjustments to the story. “The novel’s ending felt missing. Whereas this proved efficient for the novel, it left terrifying ideas to its readers. Bob determined to make a special ending for the screenplay, and this had a special impact, too,” Chito stated. “It’s scary to assume this was written some 10 years in the past. But it surely’s just like the e-book predicted what is occurring now.”
The story revolves round Gilberto “Galo” Manansala, a university scholar who’s tasked to make a journal by his professor. In his entries, he describes how every day eventualities mysteriously flip into scary conditions, and the way he will get deeply concerned in them and, ultimately, is unable to flee them.
The movie is Joshua’s first undertaking as a solo lead star. He stated he tried feeding off the feelings expressed by veteran actress Angie Ferro, who performs Mama Susan. “I’d prefer to assume that she additionally drew power from me. We needed to work intently on this undertaking,” he identified. “I’ve modified rather a lot since I began engaged on this film in 2019. I used to be simply 22 then. Bagets na bagets pa. It was additionally my first time to work with Direk Chito,” stated Joshua, who would later collaborate with Chito on Mars Ravelo’s “Darna.”
“They stated Direk Chito is such a terror at work, however he wasn’t to me. He did make me take off my shirt for this explicit film. He didn’t have a tough time convincing me to do it. I agreed as a result of it knew that it was wanted within the scene, regardless that I didn’t have an ideal six-pack to point out off. On the time, I nonetheless liked consuming a lot,” he stated, laughing.
“I’m simply pleased with how my profession is steadily shifting. I’m merely having fun with the method. I am going the place it takes me. I don’t flip my again on any job supplied to me. It’s an honor to have labored with Direk Chito below Ms. Roselle. Earlier than this, I had lengthy been interested in what it’s prefer to make a undertaking with Regal,” he stated.
At this level, Joshua was requested to distinguish his “2019 self” from that of his “2023 self.” To this, he stated: “I’ve modified rather a lot. I used to be very emotional then. I can’t say that I’m extra mature now however, sure, there’s progress. I now choose to stay life merely. I’ve realized the significance of taking good care of the individuals I worth probably the most—’di kasi lahat might care sa ‘yo.”
Joshua lately bought his luxurious autos, his Triumph Bonneville T150 motorbike and his two-door muscle automobile Dodge Challenger. “I’m extra sensible now. Mas easy, mas OK,” he defined.
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