GLAIZA De Castro and Jasmine Curtis Smith are together for the first time in the movie “Midnight in a Perfect World”, an entry in the recent QCinema International Filmfest that gained critical acclaim as a horror film that is loaded with some political undertones about martial law and the government’s current war on drugs.
This is a futuristic movie set in a distant time when Manila already has a world class mass transport system, but where constant blackouts happen nightly. The government has become authoritarian and imposes strict punishments against people who defy its laws. But still, there is prevalent drug trafficking. Those who are hunted by the cops can go to safe houses where they can hide.
The story centers on four people, two women and two men, who meet when another friend of theirs disappeared mysteriously. Jasmine Curtis Smith is the sensible and caring friend, Mimi. Glaiza de Castro is Jinka, an enigma who can be very brave but can also be impulsive. Anthony Falcon is Glenn, a nurse who is the silent water runs deep type. Dino Pastrano is Tonichi, the very suspicious and jumpy one. Eventually, they will discover what is the secret that lurks behind the sinister darkness of the blackouts.
Supporting them are Bing Pimentel as a mysterious lady in the safe house, Soliman Cruz as Jasmine’s stepdad, Dolly De Leon as Dino’s mother and Charles Salazar as the drug dealer named Kendrick.
The movie is directed by Dodo Dayao, who earlier helmed the Cinema One best picture winner in 2014, “Violator”, which is also a political horror flick. Produced by Globe Studios and Epic Media Productions, “Midnight in a Perfect World” will be available via streaming on Upstreamn for one month, starting January 29.
We ask Glaiza: how does it feel to be part of a movie that will be shown via streaming?
“Well, one thing I really miss is going to the cinemas and watching movies on a big screen,” says Glaiza. “Also attending film festivals and seeing other people talk later about the movies they’ve just watched. But we’re in the new normal where safety is of primary importance, so there is great solace in watching a movie right within the comforts of your own home.”
Glaiza just returned from Ireland, still suffering from jetlag, when she attended the movie’s zoom presscon last Monday night. She spent the Christmas holidays there with her fiancee David Rainey and his family. They just had their engagement or pre-nup pictorial. So she’s dead sure he’s the right man for her?
“When I went there, I didn’t know he already planned his proposal along with his sisters,” she says. “On my third day, doon siya nag-propose. There was a time that I doubted him, but the Lord always shows me David is the guy na ibinigay Niya sa akin. Through David, I felt ‘yung blessing, ‘yung love ni Lord sa akin. Through David, He made me feel how special I am to Him.”
So are they planning to wed soon? “We’re not in a hurry to get married. We have to consider first kung paano magtatagpo ang pamilya niya from Ireland and ‘yung pamilya ko na nandito, what with the pandemic going on. But hopefully, with the vaccine, baka magkaroon na ng linaw ang problema about traveling.”
Glaiza will soon be busy as she starts taping for a new soap on GMA-7, “Nagbabagang Luha”, a remake of a 1989 Lorna Tolentino movie and this will be directed by Ricky Davao. So their wedding might have to wait until this show has finished its entire lock in taping. Meantime, watch her in “Midnight in a Perfect World”, the top-selling film of QCinema International Film Festival 2020. You can now book “Midnight in A Perfect World” in advance on Upstream.ph bit.ly/midnightinaperfectworld.
Elijah says working with Miles has a pressure
ELIJAH Canlas won an international acting award in Estonia and the Urian and FAMAS best actor awards last year. This is for his role as a wayward teenager who’s diagnosed to be HIV positive in “Kalel, 15”. He considers 2020 as a real blessed year for him as he also gained full stardom via the online Boys Love hit, “Gameboys”.
Before 2020 was over, the company managing him, IdeaFirst, cast him in the TV5 soap “Paano ang Pasko?” which proved to be such a big hit that it’s extended beyond the Christmas season and is now retitled as “Paano ang Pangako?” Its story now mainly revolves on Elijah.
“I play Noel, raised by my mom, played by Julia Clarete,” he says. “But, growing up I never really knew who my dad is. Then it turns out that his family is alive pa pala, headed by Tita Bing Loyzaga as their matriarch, who wants to destroy the family I grew up with headed by Tita Maricel Laxa.”
So where does the conflict lie? “Gusto akong kunin ni Tita Bing from my mom’s family as my dad turns out to be her son and I’m their heir. She will do everything to get me from them and they will tell me secrets that will make me want to join them. We’re lucky na designed lang ito noon as a Christmas special, but na-extend kasi nga nag-click sa audiences and the network saw its potential as a teleserye.”
He’s so happy to be working continuously. “Masaya talaga ako kasi first time ko gumawa ng ganitong soap. Ang shoot namin has two separate units. Marami akong eksena with both units involving the two rival families, kaya patalon-talon ako sa magkabilang units. I’m so proud of my role kasi as Noel, sa akin nga umiikot ang story.”
Right after their lock in taping for “Paano ang Pangako”, he’ll start shooting Book 2 of “Gameboys”, whose first season is still being shown on Netflix. They have released the trailer of the new season of “Gameboys” and the response is overwhelming.
“When the teaser of ‘Gameboys 2’ was released, we were so happy kasi grabe ang positive reaction,” he says. “May over a hundred thousand tweets agad, tapos andaming views sa youtube. Sobrang encouraging ang response ng fans. The show is such a blessing then kasi it was shown sa panahon ng pandemic. So the challenge now is: what will we do to make sure mas maganda ito sa Book One?”
How is it doing most of his scenes with Kyle and Miles as his main co-stars in “Paano ang Pangako”? “Pareho silang masarap katrabaho. Actually, nakaka-pressure katrabaho si Miles kasi napakahusay niya, so you will be challenged to do better. With her, ramdam na ramdam ko ang emotions ko and I really get affected kaya mahirap mag-detach sa character after the scene. At masarap din siyang kakuwentuhan, magkasundo kami kahit sa food na gusto naming kainin sa set, like french fries na nago-order pa kami online.”
How about Kyle Velilno? “Kyle maybe a kontrabida sa show, but he’s not a villain in real life. Masaya kami sa set. Maganda ang reaction ng fans sa amin kasi na-miss yata nila ang pag-aaway namin noon sa ‘Gameboys’, pero ibang dynamics naman itong sa ‘Paano ang Pangako’, kasi si Miles na ang pinag-aagawan namin this time and not Kokoy.”
What if he and Kyle are the ones to be paired next time in a BL show? It’s Direk Perci Intalan who answers. “There are many possibilities in this world,” he says. “Yung ganyang nag-aaway sila ngayong parang aso’t pusa, puedeng later, sila naman ang maging magkapareha. Maski sa ‘Paano ang Pangako’, I’m being asked kung magkakaroon ba ng Book 3. It all depends kung patuloy na magiging mainit ang pagsuporta ng viewers, baka magaya kami sa hit shows abroad about families, like ‘Dynasty’ or ‘Dallas’. Ang maganda sa ‘Paano ang Pangako?’, there are so many characters from both families so this opens up to a lot of possibilities for future stories.”