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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.

Feb 12, 2022


DIRECTOR BRILLANTE MENDOZA’S last film in the three movies he has signed up for Viva is “Bahay na Pula” and it’s now about to stream on February 25.  He says this is his first horror film. 

“I directed ‘Sapi’ before, which is about possession. but it’s more of a documentary than a regular horror flick,” he says. 

“I was hesitant to do a horror film kasi it’s not within my comfort zone. But after doing two sexy dramas, ‘Palitan’ and ‘Sisid’, heto, horror naman, para maiba.”

So how did he prepare to shoot a horror flick? 

“I watched a lot of horror films, both foreign and local. But hindi talaga ako natatakot, kasi I can see the technical aspects that went into their making. So yon ang ginamit kong challenge sa sarili ko: how will I frighten my audience? 

"Paano ako mananakot? And so far, masaya naman ako sa naging experience ko. When they watch ‘Bahay na Pula’, I think local audiences won’t be disappointed as it will give them a lot of good scares.”

He was initially reluctant when Viva gave him Julia Barretto, Xian Lim and Marco Gumabao as his main stars. 

“Siempre, I’m used to working with indie actors and first time ko to work with THE Julia Barretto and her leading men. Sanay sila sa mainstream movie making, so iba ang mundo nila. 

"Iba ang naging training nila. Iba ang oryentasyon at pinanggalingan nila. So how will I connect with them? Kaya I was praying na sana, hindi kami magkaproblema.”

His apprehensions proved to be unfounded. 

“A few days into the shoot, so far, ok naman. Ang kailangan lang talaga, maging honest ka, magpakatotoo ka sa mga katrabaho mo lalo na sa mga artista. So sa briefing pa lang namin, 

"I already told them our limitations, that we’re shooting ‘Bahay na Pula’ like an indie film. Unang-una, we are not staying in a 5-star hotel but in a resort located by the beach, so don’t expect first class accommodations.”

He was surprised because they all proved to be easy to work with. “Nakakatuwa kasi nga, naging cooperative naman sila." 

He has directed Paolo Gumabao in “Sisid” and he now directs his brother Marco in “Bahay na Pula”. How will he compare the Gumabao brothers? 

“It’s not fair to compare kasi they’re both okay, Pero niloloko ko sila. When I call Marco, ang tawag ko sa kanya is Pao.  Si Paolo naman, I text him na mas magaling si Marco sa’yo. 

"But pareho silang magaling. Magkaiba lang ang personalities nila at ang atake nila sa pelikula. 

"Si Paolo is more aggressive, but that doesn’t mean that Marco is less of an actor, kasi depende yan sa roles na binibigay sa kanila. But they can both deliver at hindi ako at all nagkaproblema sa kanila.”