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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.

Sep 23, 2017

Bela Padilla Now A Writer-Actress For Writing Full Script Of 'Last Night', Soon She'll Be A Director-Writer-Actress

BELA PADILLA is now a hyphenated celebrity as a writer-actress. She attended the presscon of Star Cinema’s “Last Night”, which opens on September 27, as the film’s scriptwriter. This is her first solo full script since she has co-writers before in her past scripts. How does it feel that something she wrote solo is now filmed by Star Cinema? “It’s a big honor that a script I wrote is now a film by Star Cinema,” she says. “Tapos directed pa by Joyce Bernal and starring Piolo and Toni. Watching them give life to something I created gives me a big thrill and feeling of accomplishment.”

Is the story of “Last Night” starring Piolo Pascual and Toni Gonzaga about two people contemplating suicide based on something that happened to her in real life? “No, it’s not a true story. It’s purely fictional. I first thought of this two years ago then I gave it Direk Joyce Bernal.”

How did she become inclined to writing? “I really love reading. Our parents encouraged us more to read books than to play with toys. Kapag toys, limited lang ang puede mong bilihin. But when it’s books, you can buy all you can. So that’s how my imagination started working.”

She just came from a hit movie, “100 Tula Para kay Stella”, and we congratulated for she gave a really very good performance in the title role. So which is harder, acting or writing? “Kung artista ka, you only think of your own character. But when you are a writer, you have to think of all the characters in your story, kung paano mo sila bubuuin. I’m thankful to Direk Joyce Bernal, who’s my mentor, dahil hindi nila masyadong binago ang original script na sinulat ko. What they changed is the title. Ang original title ko kasi for this is ‘Last Chance’, but I think mas bagay na ang title na napili ni Direk Joyce, ‘Last Night’, which could mean kagabi, meaning the night before, or huling gabi, their last night sa mundong ibabaw kasi gusto mag-suicide nung characters nila.”

Will she eventually also venture into directing? “Yes, may ganong plano po. May project na akong napili for my directorial debut.”

Her ex-BF Neil Arce is a co-producer of the film under N2 Productions and for the first time, Neil joined the cast and crew of a movie he co-produced during the Q&A portion. This is something he didn’t do before as he chose then to maintain a low profile. How come he’s more visible now in “Last Night”?

“Kasi this is a very important movie for me, a passion project. Ang tagal namin itong hinintay ni Bela for the right casting,” says Neil.

Bela says they were still a couple when she wrote its script. “He helped me conceptualized the project. Siya ang kabatuhan ko ng ideas dito,” Bela adds.

It’s good they’re still in very good terms even if Neil is now more identified with his alleged new inamorata, Angel Locsin.

“Wala naman kaming pinag-awayan o ginawang masama sa isa’t isa,” Neil explains. “We’re both mature persons who can still have a good working relationship. At si Angel pa nga ang nagsabi sa amin to pitch the project sa Star Cinema after maikuwento ko sa kanya ang story. O ngayon, tapos na yung buong movie and the world is about to see it so we’re all excited.”