Aside from working on the film Death of a Girlfriend, director Yam Laranas also had his hands busy with Paraluman, a romantic film starring Jao Mapa and Rhen Escano which deviates from his usual horror projects.
“Yung emotion lang talaga ang pinaglalaruan ko. Yung emotion ng tao, whether takot, whether in love, dun ako I think I believe yun ang one of my strengths as a filmmaker. I really play with the emotions. Yung script ng Paraluman ay sinulat namin together with Jonison Fontanos. Siya rin yung co-writer ng Adan. Pinitch ko sa Viva and they loved it immediately and then we wanted Rhen nga to do it and then of course Jao we were so happy surprisingly came into the picture. Wala namang apprehensions at all kasi ang tinitingnan ko lang talaga is ano bang emotion ang nandito sa pag-ibig? Kasama na yun eh, may takot, may thrill, in fact may suspense din yun eh. Iba lang yung world. Kumbaga iba yung backdrop niya. So nagkaroon lang tayo ng ibang klaseng backdrop. Nilaro pa rin namin yung emotions ng dalawang characters,” he shared.
Before working on Paraluman, direk Yam shares his considerations before accepting new films. “First of all yung story, yung kuwento talaga yung mag-da-drive sa akin para gumawa ng isang pelikula. And parang walang order of priority, magkasama yun kung sino i-ka-cast because that will make or break yung show or yung pelikula. Basically once I start writing the script, naiisip ko na yung shoot. Para na akong nag-shu-shooting habang nagsusulat. So alam ko na kung paano siya ma-execute smoothly and quickly,” he said.
Direk Yam admitted doing lock-in shooting for the film outside the city really paid off in terms of setting the provincial feel of the story.
“We wrapped the film sometime middle of July. We shot this in Tanay, Rizal. The challenge really is yung COVID restrictions but other than that, having to work with really good actors, with Rhen and Jao. Parang binigay talaga yung pelikula sa location kasi I wanted to have an Amorsolo look. Well na-achieve naman namin. Nakatulong talaga siya. Hindi lang siya location for backdrop. Sila Rhen and Jao got inspired by it because yun yung nagbigay sa kanila ng feeling of being in that place and yung love nila sa isa’t isa,” he explained.
Although the film had a different name when they first started shooting, direk Yam shared the story behind discovering the perfect title.
“We had a working title and then Paraluman came into the picture because naghanap ako ng soundtrack. At that time, hindi pa masyadong maingay yung song ni Adi and I kind of fell in love with it right away. Ang nakakatuwa is that perfect na perfect siya dun sa movie. Yung lyrics, even yung emotion, yung melody.
“Tapos pag tiningnan mo nga yung meaning ng Paraluman napakaganda ng kahulugan ng Paraluman. Ang pinaka-common na meaning ng Paraluman nga ay muse, sometimes ang tinatawag na Paraluman ang pinakamagandang babae sa lahat.
“Pero ang pinaka sweet na meaning sa akin that I just read recently, ang original meaning ng Paraluman in the old, old, old days was a compass that means the direction. Meaning yung beauty ni Paraluman or nung babae or muse, yun ang north, yun ang sinusundan ng lalake. Dun ang direction ng lalake. Yun ang kanyang pinupuntahan which is very sweet. And nagkakataon nagkakatugma and bumagay lahat yung meaning ng song, yung meaning ng word, at yung meaning ng pelikula,” he shared.
Grateful to still be able to work even with the current global health crisis, the Paraluman director said there is still a lot to be thankful for.
“Unang una nagpapasalamat ako dahil may Vivamax at may streaming. Parati kong sinasabi na bilang director nagkakaroon ako ng mas malaking freedom na gumawa ng kahit anong kuwento or ibang klaseng story. Na walang constraints sa sinehan or in my humble opinion yung MTRCB restrictions.
“I’m very thankful because dahil din sa pandemic nagiging mas efficient yung shooting. Limited yung time, maganda yung training natin kasi nga may limit yung oras. At the same time, dahil dun nga kami nag-shoot sa barangay Cayabu sa Tanay, Rizal, yun ang nagbigay sa amin ng pahinga for me. Malaking bawas sa stress because you are surrounded by the nature, even yung tunog ng ilog, tunog ng ibon, at maiingay na kuliglig. Other than that, pasalamat pa rin kami dahil nabigyan kami ng opportunity para magbigay ng entertainment sa mga manunuod,” he said.
Paraluman is now available for streaming Vivamax on Vivamax. Starring Jao Mapa, Rhen Escano, and Gwen Garci. Directed by Yam Laranas.