Emilio Aguinaldo biopic on the works

- Ricky L. Calderon () - February 25, 2011 - 12:00am

Chynna Ortaleza doesn’t have the slightest idea that Natasha Ledesma, the name of the character she’s portraying in the new GMA primetime series Magic Palayok premiering on Monday, Feb. 28, was the screen name of a bold star during the 1990s.

She even said at the presscon of Magic Palayok last Tuesday that she was supposed to play a different role in the new series directed by Joel Lamangan but at the last minute was given the kontrabida role. The Natasha Ledesma role, she knew, was supposed to be played by another actress.

“But what is important is that I am the final choice,” added Chynna who is very excited with the project since she will be working with Ms. Cherie Gil whom she idolizes. “I was supposed to do another role for Magic Palayok, which I already said yes to pero they decided na ibigay sa akin ang role ni Natasha. Nagulat ako when they gave me that role.”

She is also happy to be busy after the lean months. She signed a guaranteed three-year contract with GMA 7. She’s very thankful for the break in Magic Palayok since for several months after the revamp done on SOP (which resurfaced as Party Pilipinas), she didn’t have a regular show in the Kapuso channel. She only had several guest stints, which did not pay much to enable her to sustain a steady income for her family. Chynna admitted fearing for the future of her family because she is the breadwinner. There were bills to be paid but not enough income was going into her bank account. Then came Magic Palayok.

“I really enjoy myself in this role,” she said. “Parang dream villain role ito tapos katrabaho ko pa si Tita Cherie (Gil). Then I get to work with Direk Joel (Lamangan) so this is really a blessing.”


The very complex nature of the character of Emilio Aguinaldo was one reason why award-winning director Tikoy Aguiluz decided to accept the challenge to helm the film bio of the first president of the Philippine Republic. According to him, the extensive research done on the life of Aguinaldo revealed many interesting facets of the man who was pictured as a villain (based on what side of the fence you are standing). The research team of Laguna Governor Jeorge “ER” Ejercito (who will play Aguinaldo) was able to gather a good amount of material that would serve as the basis for the script of the movie.

Aguinaldo, according to Direk Tikoy, is probably one of the most misunderstood characters in the Philippine history. That he lived till he was 95 years is a rich source of material enough to make an epic of a film.For his part, Roy Iglesias, who is tasked to write the script based on tons and tons of research materials, the story of Aguinaldo is one of the most difficult and challenging writing assignment he has had in his long career as a screenwriter. The scope of Aguinaldo’s life is so wide that it is not enough to put everything in a two-hour long movie. It would be hard to choose the most important things to highlight.

The movie cannot afford to gloss over the alleged animosity that existed between Aguinaldo and Bonifacio, which prompted the former to put the latter into trial and subsequently caused Bonifacio’s death. The movie will attempt to trace the events that led to the tragedy and let the public decide if indeed Aguinaldo is a heel or a hero.

The Aguinaldo movie is intended as an entry to the 2011 Metro Manila Film Festival. Direk Tikoy also said they plan to exhibit the film in various film festivals abroad.


Direk Wenn Deramas was requested by his friend as well as boss, Lauren Dyogi, not to say much about the issue involving his talent DJ Durano and writer cum manager Ricky Gallardo, who handles Eula Valdez. The issue: Ricky Gallardo reportedly wanted DJ out of the cast of Mula sa Puso, wherein he will be paired with Eula. Of course, Direk Wenn didn’t like it, considering it was he who picked Eula to be in the remake of the successful program.

Direk Wenn said he cannot understand why the talent manager would want DJ out of the show. He would have understood if it were Eula who requested it.

“Hindi ko maintindihan kung bakit gusto niya ipatanggal si DJ sa cast, to think na ako ang namili kay Eula. Baka naman may issue between Eula and DJ pero nang tinanong ko si Eula, wala naman daw issue at di niya alam na gusto ipatanggal si DJ. Okay naman kay Eula na maktrabaho si DJ,” Direk Wenn said.

“Baka naman naliliitan siya (Ricky Gallardo) kay DJ bilang isang artista. Puwede akong huwag magsalita sa issue pero sana huwag akong tanungin tungkol diyan kasi pag tinanong ako, sasagot ako. Bilang boss ko si Lauren Dyogi, pipilitin ko na huwag awayin si Ricky Gallardo,” said the 2010 Metro Manila Film Festival’s Best Director winner.

But all’s well that ends well. DJ was not removed from the cast of Mula sa Puso.

“I have faith in my stars kaya nga sila lagi ang mga artista ko sa mga movies na ginagawa ko kasi comfortable ako working with them,” said Direk Wenn. He further said that it’s the same thing with Anne Curtis, Luis Manzano, Eugene Domingo, Dina Bonnevie, Candy Pangilinan, and John Lapus, the stars of his latest movie Who’s That Girl from Viva Films and SMDC. Who’s That Girl is showing on March 2 in theaters nationwide.

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