Known for making Star Cinema horror films like Sukob and Feng Shui, Director Chito Rono admits he enjoys this particular film genre. For 2012, the talented director talks about making a role for Vilma Santos in The Healing. “Horror is one of those genres na hindi talaga siya kumukupas. Once it’s done well, everybody loves to watch horror movies. Kahit na ako. masaya siya eh. Lalo na pag may matatakutin kang kaibigan, ang sarap (laughs). It’s an experience na like no other. It’s like comedy where tawa kayo ng tawa. Kasi kapag iiyak ka, medyo nahihiya ka pa. pero this one’s really made for Ate Vi. Talagang role tailor made for her. Matagal na niyang hiningi ito,” he shares during The Healing’s bloggers conference held last July 23 at the ABS-CBN compound.
Direk Chito says he and Vilma had talked about making a movie together as early as three years ago. After doing movies like Bata, bata Pano Ka Ginawa? and Dekada 70, The Healing is their reunion movie after almost ten years. He adds the multi-awarded actress has already proven her worth after 50 years in showbiz. “This is our fourth movie. I’ve always said na nakita ko na ang galing ng isang Vilma Santos sa ilang dekada, sa ang daming great movies na nagawa. Parang she’s one of those people na kailangan pa ba niya i-prove ulit? Yung parang I know she now always demands for something na medyo mas substantial. Huwag naman yung mediocre. Sabi ko the concept of the movie is bagay na sa stature niya. We’ve seen her do a lot of great scenes in most of her movies. The famous monologue scenes, the famous long takes. Ate Vi yan pag sinabi mong three pages na monologue, automatic na yan sa showbiz. Bihira na lang sa industriya yung kaya gawin yan. I’m very happy na pumayag si Ate Vi na ensemble ang pelikula.”
Along with other talented actors like Kim Chiu, Janice de Belen, Pokwang, Mark Gil, Carmi Martin, Ynes Veneracion and Daria Ramirez, Direk Chito says Vilma showed she can also be a good team player. “Of course siya yung poste sa lupa pero ang gagaling ng mga artista na it works as an ensemble. So the challenge is not to challenge kung ano kaya niya pero to work as a team member and to be effective in a genre that is so popular I don’t know if she’s done this before. I challenged myself to put Vilma Santos in an ensemble piece, in a new genre for her and as I know, she will be very effective. Natuto naman siya in the end, kasi nanigas. Maruong na siya magulat (laughs),” he explains.
Direk Chito admits he is proud of how Vilma tackled her role in The Healing. “The idea grew from a certain type of movie to a horror-suspense movie. I warned her na medyo physical ito, maraming takbo-takbo. Pero hindi ko naman sasagarin yung artista mo, kasi marami pa kayong gagawing ibang eksena. It was like our first movie. When we did our first movie, grabe yung physical nun, nag-dra-drive si Ate Vi, talagang nahuhulog siya sa putik, tumatakbo, naghahabulan, yung ganun. More or less, it’s that kind of physical demands ng pelikula na nagawa ni Ate Vi after how many years.” In the film, Vilma plays the role of Seth, a woman who turns to a faith healer to solve her family’s problems.
The Healing opens in cinemas nationwide today July 25, Wednesday.
Director Chito Roño on 'The Healing': 'This one's really made for Ate Vi'
The acclaimed director admits the Star for All Seasons does not need to prove anything more in terms of acting.