Actor Gerald Anderson takes on the role of a soldier in the 2017 Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino (PPP) entry AWOL.
According to the Kapamilya actor, he is very happy that the movie became part of the first-ever PPP whose movie entries are showing in all cinemas from August 16 to 22. He hopes that the festival will turn out well so that they will continue in the years to come, giving a platform for independent films.
Talking about his character, Gerald said, “Isa po akong sundalo sa Philippine Army. Scout ranger so parte po ako ng special forces ng Philippine Army so parang sila ‘yung the best of the best. Talagang magagaling sila. Nagkaroon kami ng isang misyon sa Mindanao at ‘yung target po na na-eliminate namin, parang ‘yung pamilya niya, gusto niya kaming bawian. Gusto nilang magkaroon ng revenge sa grupo ko.”
After he and his group are targeted, Gerald’s character survives. Hence, the killer is on the lookout for him, involving his family. “Kailangan kong protektahan ‘yung pamilya ko, at the same time, kailangan ko rin magkaroon ng hustisya. Kasi ‘pag mga ganoon, lalo na paggaling kayo sa bakbakan, parang magkakapatid talaga kayo niyan, eh,” he added.
Directed by Enzo Williams, AWOL is deemed a relevant and timely film. “Sana talaga makapanood ang mga ibang sundalo lalo na po ‘yung ibang galing sa Marawi, ‘yung mga nandoon o ‘yung mga nandito. Kasi para magkaroon sila ng high morale na kumbaga, ‘yung respeto ko at ‘yung buong production ng movie, ‘yung crew at ‘yung buong bayan, ay mataas ang respeto natin para sa kanila lalo na po sa mga ginagawa nila para sa atin ngayon,” he told PUSH during a set visit.
According to Gerald, he underwent training with real soldiers for this movie. They shot some scenes in Laguna, Fort Bonifacio, and Manila. “Meron po kaming dalawang sundalong kasama doon (nang) nagtetraining ako at kasama sa movie… Namatay ngayon sa Marawi so inaalay naming lahat ‘yung movie para sa kanila,” he shared. He then wished that when people see this movie, they would realize the dedication of the soldiers to their duty for their countrymen.
This is not the first time that Gerald took on an action movie. In 2013, he starred in the Erik Matti film On The Job (OTJ). But while they seem to have the same “feel” given the theme, they are different from each other.
Describing AWOL, Gerald said that it is definitely action-packed and has a good storyline.