Director Joyce Bernal unabashedly admitted that the major reason why she accepted helming Everything About Her was due to the fact that she will have the chance of working with Vilma Santos.
The upcoming film revolves around the humbling of three proud characters played by CEO Vilma, her son and architect Xian Lim, and the nurse played by Angel Locsin.
Direk Joyce described the three characters as: “Si Ate Vi impakta, si Angel epal [at] si Xian impakto.”
According to her, the Star for All Seasons never hesitated in doing any scene for their film, even if it meant spewing some expletives.
“Wala, never. [Sabi niya] 'Sasabihin ko ba talaga ito Direk, p****g ina?' Oo sabihin niyo po [sabi ko],” she related. “Puwede bang hindi ko sabihin dito at doon ko sasabihin sa ganitong eksena kung saan mas galit siya?' Sabi ko hindi, mas-okay na dito kung 'yung wala lang.”
If anything, Vilma, she said, has been very obedient to a fault. Ironically, Direk Joyce is hoping for Vilma to blow her top off one of these days.
“Actually masyadong masunurin si Ate Vi. Kung minsan nga gusto kong makipagaway. Hindi siya nakikipagaaway. Parang 'yun lang, 'yun lang siguro 'yung hinahanap ko, 'yung sana makipagaway siya. Sana awayin niya ako, parang ganon,” she said.
Since Vilma is known for being a people’s person, Direk Joyce said she consciously reinvented the veteran star’s persona on and even off cam.
The reinvention started with an “impakta” look “'Yung 'wag kang magsasalita kasi kakainin kita ng buhay. Parang ganon.
“Tapos mga mannerism, mga sarcastic na remarks. Kasi si Ate Vi kasi sa lahat ng tao 'Ah Kuya kumain ka na ba?' Ganon siya na tao eh, very concerned siya sa lahat. 'Nag-break naba kayo?'” shared Direk Joyce.
“Dahil sa kakaganon niya ginawa ko one time sabi niya kay Angel 'Kumain ka na ba?' Sabi ni Angel, oo. [Sabi niya] 'Mukha nga!'” she added.
Meanwhile, not only did she have to bend Vilma’s personality but Direk Joyce also had to temporarily cut the already strong ties between Angel and the Star for All Seasons.
As Vilma’s son Luis Manzano’s girlfriend, Angel has been very vocal about her love and admiration for Vilma and vice versa.
To this Direk Joyce said, “Actually hindi ko sila masyadong pinapagusap sa set para wala masyadong bonding kasi 'yun 'yung bini-build ng pelikula eh, na ngayon ka palang mag-start magkaroon ng relationship. So, walang masyadong bonding.”
The express “separation” of the artists, according to Direk Joyce, is what the script demands from them.
“'Yung hindi kayo magkakakilala, you don't like each other,” she described.
Everything About Her starring Vilma Santos, Angel Locsin, and Xian Lim will hit the theaters nationwide starting January 27.