It is my first time to be ‘indirectly’ involved in promoting a mainstream movie. The other Tuesday, I attended the second pocket press conference for the movie ASWANG, which was attended by its lead stars Paulo Avelino, Joem Bascon and Lovi Poe at Mesa Grill in Tomas Morato, Quezon City.
Just to give you a little background, Regal Films originally planned to produce an exact remake of the first ASWANG movie, where Alma Moreno played the lead role under the direction of Peque Gallaga and Lore Reyes twenty years ago. Since there is a big obvious change in the society in the past years, scriptwriter Aloy Adlawan decided to make a screenplay with the necessary adjustments. When Jerold Tarog saw it, he suggested that they play around with the characters of the film which includes the inclusion of the Abuwaks. The film has the horror, suspense, family, drama, action comedy and romance factor. All in one, ika nga. In-aswang na lahat ng genre LOL.
Now let’s go to the Meet and Greet the cast part………
Joem Bascon is one of my favorite character actors ever. I’ve seen some of his indie films like Sanglaan, Walang Hanggang Paalam (also with Lovi Poe) and Noy, which I believe is his best performance to date. You also see him on TV either playing antagonist roles or a secondary lead playing a vital part in the series. Most people say that he is a Piolo Pascual look-alike, but I think his filmography can attest that he is not just another trying hard copycat.
Most of the press people asked him about his controversial break-up with Meryll Soriano last year. Being the gossip-hungry parazzi girl that I am, I never knew the reason behind the break-up. He did admit though that he got depressed because he is used to being emotionally attached to his partner when he has one. Meryll is now studying somewhere in Europe and in fairness to her, she’s doing well. Joem even revealed that his depression led him to gain some weight that’s why he lost a number of projects where he is required to show some skin. When reality finally slapped him on the face, he went back to the gym to regain his once sexy body. He is playing an antagonist role here in Aswang as Efren, the second leader of the Abuwaks. He is regularly seen in the suspense-drama Nasaan Ka, Elisa? in ABS-CBN and in the upcoming Cinema One Originals 2011 entry Ka Oryang.
Now let’s proceed to Paulo Avelino, who is a bit more open to the press compared to the first time I met him. It is quite understandable since it is his first time to be mobbed by the press since his Starstruck 4 stint. He is a bit more relaxed and gamely answers some questions (even the naughty ones LOL). I remember this one reporter asking him one what he usually does before he goes to bed. He replied ‘You really wanna know?’ with a wide naughty grin on his face LOL. Everyone laughed and he replied again with ‘Brush My Teeth’. Weh? LOLOLOL
Lovi Poe is truly the darling of the press. I think she is the most veteran among all the cast members when it comes to dealing with controversial questions and now she knows how to handle it. Most of the showbiz reporters asked her about her short rift with Mother Lily regarding a love scene that was suddenly added in the movie. We all know that Lovi Poe is open to doing love scenes (Temptation Island with Aljur Abrenica and My Neighbor’s Wife with Dennis Trillo and Jake Cuenca). She defended herself by saying that she wasn’t informed prior to the shoot that they’ll be adding a steamy scene with her and Paulo Avelino and she felt that it wasn’t necessary since this is a horror film. Later on, the producers told her that they need to add it to make her character as Hasmin appear a bit more ‘human’. Thanks to Jerrold Tarog for handling this well. I bet though that even the director scratched his head after hearing that order to add a love scene. According to those who have seen it, the love scene was tastefully done. I have yet to see that!
That Â Tuesday mini-presscon with the three lead stars really made me a happy that afternoon. I got the chance to talk to Lovi, Paulo and Joem in a bit more relaxed manner and even shared some drinks. Cool 😀 I also grabbed the chance to interview Paulo Avelino for my travel blog (rock climbing enthusiast, beat that!) and took an almost kagat photo 😛
The ever-energetic Regal Aswang PR Team (Hello Marvs, Sheilfred and Abby!) called that night inviting me for an emergency grand press conference for the next day. Wow. Emergency pero grand? Ayos ah 😀
This time, Lovi, Paulo and Joem was joined by young stars Jillian Ward (Daldalita- ang kulit nga!) and the controversial Albie Casino. Apparently, this is Albie’s first movie and the press were eager to ask him questions related to Andi Eigenmann. The Regal PR team managed to ask the rest of the reporters to ask movie-related questions only.
Before the Q&A with the cast starts, we were able to watch the 18-minute The Making of Aswang video. I recommend that you watch this one and decide whether to give this movie a try. Some moviegoers are just to doubtful to support Filipino films.
There were too many group questions like ‘Sino ang artistang gusto mong kagatin? Takot ka ba sa Aswang? among others.
Joem Bascon was asked about his ‘comeback’ to Regal (I think the last film he did with them is White House, another horror film!), Paulo Avelino interviewed about his controversial Gandang Gabi Vice guesting (Mr. Trending Topic! LOL), Albie Casino on his first horror movie experience, Lovi Poe’s ‘tampuhan’ with Mother Lily and the lady producer also aired her side on a producer’s point of view. Jillian Ward is just there for the LOLZZZZZ. Ka-gigil!
Director Jerrold Tarog arrived minutes before the presscon proper ended, and he told everyone that he just woke up LOL. I met him two years ago in Cinemalaya (Presscon for the Cinemalaya entries where his second full-length film Mangatyanan was shown) and the press didn’t really mob him and his Mangatyanan lead star Che Ramos with lights and controversial questions. I think he is still in the stage wherein he’s trying to adjust in the mainstream scene. Make more good movies hehe Kaya mo ‘yan, Sir!
Right after the press conference proper, I roamed around and listened to some interviews. Etchosera lang HAHA 😀
Here are some #Aswang promo videos I recorded featuring Paulo, Lovi (repost) and Albie. The controversial Albie!
I overheard Albie saying that he would love to work on an indie film project soon and he wants to play an offbeat role, which is very far different from his goody portrayal as Christian in Mara Clara. I guess he can play these roles effectively especially after the big issues involving his personal life.
I didn’t go to the Premiere Night last Sunday, but I heard that it was a very well-attended premiere and some went there with their Halloween costumes on! Paulo and Lovi made the winners of their ‘Kagatin Mo Ako, Gusto Mo?’ promo by getting bitten and biting back LOL. I bet it was a night full of rawr and kilig 😛
ASWANG starring Lovi Poe, Paulo Avelino, Joem Bascon, Albie Casino, Jillian Ward, Marc Abaya, Nina Jose, Bembol Roco and Precious Lara Quigaman is now shown in theaters nationwide! Under the direction of Jerrold Tarog and Screenplay by Aloy Adlawan and Jerrold Tarog. Produced by Regal Films.
Special thanks to Regal’s #Aswang PR Team (Sheilfred, Marvs, Abby etc.) and Mr. Leo Dominguez 😀
As of writing, I’ve read some reviews and tweets from those who were able to watch the film on its opening day. Have you seen the movie Aswang? Share your thoughts! Will post my review at Cinegang.ph soon.