Fierce Actors in Roles to Reckon With in “Culion”

pilar mateo sni THE “P” TALKS!

BY: Pilar Mateo

THE two leading men of “Culion” were found!

After signing his contract with #TeamMSB days ago, Mike Liwag was joined by award-winning actor (FAMAS Best Supporting) Joem Bascon in a dinner tendered by producers Shandii Bacolod at the posh Terrace Manila Restaurant in Quezon City.

According to Joem, “Nasorpresa na lang ako. Nagtataka lang ako nung una kasi nababasa ko sa mga writeups na nandoon na ang name ko hindi ko pa alam na kasali na pala ako. Kaya natuwa ako. Kasi I will be working again with Iza Calzado (who je worked with in “Batanes” a long time ago). That time, marami rin akong natutunan a sorpresang natanggap from Iza. It was a breeze working with her. Am sure dito sa “Culion” ako na manonorpresa sa kanya. Marami akong first with jer in that movie. Ang biro niya nga, siya naka-‘devirginize’ sa akin sa movie. Tingnan natin. Siya naman bibiglain ko here.”

culion presscon (4)

He is Kanor, the farmer.

“Magsasaka ako. Mahal na mahal ko ang kasintahan ko portrayed by Iza. At marami kaming pagsubok na kinakaharap sa komunidad bilang kami ang mga maysakit. Kung hanggang saan at kailan kami hahawak sa aming pag-asa sa buhay at sa aming pagmamahalan. It will be very challenging physicalky. Kasi, si Kanor, putol na ang kamay at stage 2 na ang dinadalang sakit.”

Mike, is Jaime. The one with the Stage 3 stage of the dreaded disease in tje community in the 1940s.

“I was moved nung mabasa ko na ang script. Hindi rin nama ako ganon ka-aware sa story ng Culion itself. I auditioned for it. Speechless ako nung sabihin na kasama na ako sa final casting. Gusto ko sumigaw. I was told na 99% na si Jasmine (Curtis Smith) na ang ikatlong leading lady in the movie. Excited ako. Kasi, alam ko sobrang galing niya. Napapanood ko her works.”

culion presscon (2)

Added Joem, “Excited din ako sa pagbabalik ni direk Alvin Yapan. Three years din ‘ata siya nagpahinga. Kaya am so honored to work with him.

“Marami ako, tayong matututunan about the film. Nakakalungkot siya. Hindi ko alam na may community pala in Culion. Alam ko lang it’s just a place na may hospital. Marami pala ang iba’t ibang mga banyaga ang dinala at nanirahan na rin doon.

“I am always thankful to my good friend Shandii. Kasi, another big role na naman ito na hahamon na naman sa kakayahan ko. Alam niyo na ang mga ginawa ko sa “Double Twisting…” That role gave me the award. I admit, hindi naman ako mainstream actor. But there was a time na nangarap naman ako to be a matinee idol. Pero sa indie movies ako na-establish with the roles I portrayed. Nabigyan ako ng magagandang trabaho. Happy na very trusting and confident naman sa kakayahan ko ang mga katrabaho ko. And enjoy what I have now.”

Mike doesn’t mind whether he be esta lished and given a loveteam in the industry.

“Gusto ko. Pero kung wala, pwede ko gawin lahat. Whether may ka-loveteam or wala. Kasi, I can work alone. As an actor gusto ko lang na marami akong challenges na magawa.”

The dream roles for the two leading mean are yet to come.

Joem would be okay in a gay role. A transwoman. A la Jared Leto.

“Yung girl ako talaga.”

Mike is okay with that.

“Hindi ko pa lang masahot now kung ano talaga ‘ying pinaka na ‘dream’ role.”

culion presscon (3)

The deal is sealed. “Culion” has the best leading men to tackle on the characters that award-winning writer Ricky Lee created.

A big project aiming to be part of this year’s MMFF (Metro Manila Film Festival). And the Film Industry’s 100 Years.

To show the world its rich culture-its past and present and the bright future as it unfolds to the eyes of the world. The questions stuck in the minds of those who never knew what Culion is all about. What it offers.

Ricky, direk Alvin and Team MSB will take us to that dark past of Culion with the characters who will sting our hearts and how it has become a community to be shared and shown to the world!

The leading ladies are Iza Calzado, Meryll Soriano and Jasmine Curtis Smith. With a commendable cast of thousands who passed the intense auditions.

The cast and crew are all set to be brought to Culion this July to relive and experience its past, share its history and bring it to the world!

What a journey it would be!

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