Portraying the role of patriarch Mark dela Cruz in the Star Cinema-released film Biktima, Cesar Montano got to work with his real-life wife Sunshine Cruz. Sunshine plays the role of a news agency boss who assigns Cesar’s wife (played by Angel Aquino) to cover a story in the mountains where she is taken hostage by terrorists and is thought to be dead.
Just like his previous film Panaghoy Sa Suba, Biktima was shot entirely in Cesar’s province of Bohol. Cesar admitted he is happy with his family life right now. “Ako, as long as we pray together, walang problems. Because God is there. Hanggang may prayers ganun lang eh. Pag may tukso naman, you should run away from temptation eh. Ngayon kasi nasa father image mode ako ngayon,” he shared.
Cesar also clarified the rumors that he has been forbidding his wife to go back to showbiz. “Hindi, definitely not. Kung mag-create nga ako ng storya para lang kay Sunshine eh, yung nababagay sa kanya, pang-comeback niya. Pero hindi kasi biro at hindi madaling task ang maging asawa. It’s hard. Kasi ako nakita ko noon sa aking pag-aaral ng buhay at mga nababasa, yung mga anak na natuwa ang mga magulang, the secret is the nanay. Yang nanay ang laging nandudoon at nakatanong kung ano ang problema ng anak, anong dapat kong gawin anak at bakit nakatapos yung anak ng pag-aaral, because of the nanay. Bakit nagagawa lagi ang assignment? Because of the nanay. So the secret of all these leaders, from what I read, is the mothers,” he explained.
Cesar agreed to waive his talent fee in the psychological drama because he believed in the vision of his former assistant director in Panaghoy sa Suba, RD Alba who also wrote Biktima. The talented actor-director clarified that the movie was definitely not based on broadcast Ces Drilon’s own ordeal in Sulu back in 2008. “Imposible kasi mas nauna niyang sinulat eh. Kasi meron siyang tangible and electronic evidence na nauna siyang nag-email siya about the story and I saw it talaga bago pumutok yung kay Ces eh,” he said.
Cesar also shared his sentiments on how the government can help uplift the state of the film industry. “I believe that movies are the greatest medium para i-educate ang anumang nation. Kaya I hope and pray that our government should see this and makipagtulungan sila sa atin na makita nila na ang industriya ng pelikula, kung kaya nila makatulong para maiangat pa natin para sa ekonomiya natin,” he said.
When asked about whether he had ever been “victimized,” Cesar cited his recent political bid. “Nabiktima ako ng pulitika. It may sound parang bitter but I don’t want to talk about it. I’m moved on already. But for the sake of answering the question, kung susumahin yung akong buhay, ang makikita kong nangyari sa akin na ganun, yun yung biktima ako. But no regrets because I didn’t become me, the Cesar Montano you know right now kundi dahil sa mga pangyayaring yun. Kasi it became a lesson to me,” he said.
The 50-year-old actor also added that he has not closed his doors on politics for good either. “Right now busing-busy ako, napakaraming pelikula kong gustong gawin. Pero hindi ako nagsasalita ng tapos. Baka biglang after three or four years, makita niyo akong tumatakbo ulit. May umo-offer sa akin pero sabi ko I’m too busy to go back,” he said.