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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Apr 4, 2016

Elemento' Director Mark Meily Says Cristine Reyes Very Well Behaved So He Can't Believe Her Tiff With Vivian Velez

DIRECTOR MARK MEILY’s past works have won awards, like “Crying Ladies”, “Baler”, “La Visa Loca” and “El Presidente”. Now, for the first time, he tries to direct a horror movie in Viva’s “Elemento” starring Cristine Reyes as a mom who’s only son is impersonated by an elemental called “tambal”. He says the story of “Elemento” is based on the real life experience of his daughter when she was only five years old.

“She is scared of going to their school then kasi she sees small hairy people,” he narrates. “Their school was in New Manila and surrounded by old trees. At first, they just want her to play with them but later on, gusto nila, sumama siya sa kanila. I went to the school and told the teachers about it. Then one day, bigla na lang tumigil yung bata sa pagkukuwento about the small people she sees. She’s now in her 20s and has no memory of what happened then. But I’ve heard of stories of people being kidnapped by duwendes or elementals who live in the forest and this is what the movie is all about.”

How different is “Elemento” from other horror flicks? “I try not to use cliche elements. In most Western horror movies, it’s usually about the ghost or spirit wanting retribution or justice. Nagmumulto sila kasi merong may atraso sa kanila. ‘Elemento’ introduces something new. Cristine plays a mom who starts suspecting na yung anak niyang bumalik sa bahay nila after the field trip na sinamahan sa school nila is not really her really son kasi iba na ang behavior. And she’s right. The challenge for then becomes how will she get back her son and get rid of this evil entity na nasa bahay nila.”

Cristine just had a not so pleasant encounter with a co-star in the soap she’s currently doing, “Tubig at Langis”. Did he have a similar experience with her? “None. When I heard of the story about her, I can’t believe it. Feeling ko, parang ibang artista ang tinutukoy nila kasi wala kaming naging problema at all sa Cristine na katrabaho namin. She’s very professional at talagang pinag-aaralan niya ang character niya. She’s very serious with her craft.”

“Elemento”, which opens in theaters on Wednesday, also stars Jake Cuenca as the leading man, but he was not able to make it to the movie’s presscon as he is now studying acting in the States.