Freeman Cebu Entertainment

Cherry Pie Picache gives birth to a fish in "Isda"

- Ricky L. Calderon -

Award-winning actress Cherry Pie Picache is excited to join this year’s Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival where she topbills the Adolf Alix Jr. film titled "Isda" where she plays a housewife who gives birth to a fish. The screenplay, written by Jerry Gracio, was based on a short story which he himself wrote and won for him a second prize in the Palanca Awards for Literature.

Cherry Pie is excited not only for "Isda," which she considers a "role of a lifetime" but also for the other entries in the Cinemalaya that presents interesting tales that are thought-provoking, out-of-the-box and just simply superb examples of exemplary works of cinema.

She’s not even thinking that "Isda" should make her win a best actress award come awards night but she accepted the project because she felt challenged by the role. After her award-winning performance in "Foster Child" which gave her the best actress trophies from the Gawad Urian and the Golden Screen Awards, Cherry Pie's next role should be inspiring and something that she’d fall in love with.

"After I did Foster Child, I told myself that my next role should be as interesting and as challenging. When Kuya Ed (Instrella, her manager) read the script of Isda, we knew right away that this is the fitting follow-up to Foster Child. Wala nang tanong-tanong and even if I was just second choice for the role, or even third choice, the important thing is, I got the part," says the versatile actress.

"After I read the script, I told myself this is my kind of role and I won’t let the chance pass. I just have to have this. I fell in love with the role instantly. Siyempre when you mature, you become choosy with materials and you yearn to do something different yet challenging at the same time."

Cherry Pie is truly thankful that Direk Adolf decided to give her the role of Lina, the woman who gave birth to a fish in a middle of a storm. Those who witnessed it were shocked – her son was a fish. Miguel, her husband (played by Bembol Roco), cannot accept it. Lina embraces what has happened and treats the fish as her own son. Strange and surreal moments test Lina’s love for her offspring.

"I had difficulty portraying the role because of the simplicity of the character. Mas simple mas mahirap kasi internal ang attack sa role. To begin with, your premise is, this woman gave birth to a fish!? You’d ask – is she insane? Is this true? You already have doubts. But the objective is for me to make the audience believe that I (Lina) really gave birth to a fish. I haven’t seen the whole film but I hope the audience would be able to get the message," says Cherry Pie.

She believes that while breathing life to the role of Lina, she really believed she gave birth to fish. She could actually feel it and hopes that the audience would feel the same way after watching the movie. "I have to believe that the fish is really my son so that I’d be truthful, sincere and honest with my portrayal. Nanay ako na nagluwal ng isda and I have to make the audience believe in that through my acting," she enthuses.

She even said that she and the fish have their moments. And if she were to believe the words of her director, the fish could act. "That was the moment I was telling myself and I was really convinced that I gave birth to it, that it was really my son, no matter how impossible it may seem. Talagang nagre-react ang isda, plus the other members were also good. Ensemble acting at its finest."

Cherry Pie said that she has become choosy with her film roles. That’s how seriously she looks at her craft as an actress. And as a mom who dotes on her son, a film role should be worth the time she’d spend away from her son’s company.

"If the role is something that will take me away from my son, then it has to be worth it, really. But my son understands the situation and the intricacies of my job. And I thank God for the good projects coming my way," she adds.

She’s also thankful for indie films like "Isda" as it gives actresses like her the opportunity to do interesting film roles that challenges her creativity as a performer and makes her think on how she could give it a noteworthy characterization.

"I feel fulfilled in doing roles like this because it gives us the satisfaction and answers our thirst for good projects, good movies. But doing teleseryes on TV also gives us added opportunity as well to broaden our acting horizons," says Cherry Pie. As she matures in her craft, all the more she understands the value of giving a good performance that measure up to her caliber as an actress.

Cherry Pie says she cringes and feels embarrassed whenever she is referred to as an award-winning actress, adding that it’s not a label she wants to carry on her head. "From the time I started in this business, I just want to be known as a good actress, not just as a star. She also doesn’t want to pressure herself that every movie of hers should win her an award.

"Acting is a continuous learning process as well and you should not stop learning just because you won an award or two. Yes, it’s nice to win an award because it’s a testament that you did a good job and it feels good to be given a pat on the shoulder for an exemplary work. Winning awards for a job well done is just a bonus," she said.

Isda (Fable of the Fish) is a finalist to the Director’s Showcase of the 7th Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival under the direction of Adolfo B. Alix Jr. It stars Cherry Pie Picache and Bembol Roco together with Rossana Roces, Evelyn Vargas-Knaebel, Alan Paule, Arnold Reyes, Angeli Bayani, and Ms. Anita Linda.

* * *

We kidded Director Bb. Joyce Bernal that it’s not only Nadine Samonte, the lead actress of the new TV5 soap "The Sisters" who should be considered as the new queen of the Kapatid Network, but the lady director should lay claim to the title as well. After all, she’s directing back to back TV dramas for TV5.

Babaeng Hampaslupa is ending tonight after a fruitful and exciting six months and by Monday, "The Sisters" takes a bow as TV5 welcomes former Kapuso star Nadine as its newest primetime queen. Nadine plays a dual role and this early, we are curious as to how her portrayal would match up to the performance of Coco Martin, who also plays a dual role in Minsan Lang Kita Iibigin.

Direk Joyce says she’s happy working with TV5 and adds it’s a good experience to be a part of a growing network, the same sentiment aired by Nadine who said that she decided to transfer to TV5 because she wants to grow with the network. But this is not to say that GMA 7 stunted Nadine’s growth as an actress.

 She wants the chance to work with another network and a new set of stars.

As for direk Joyce, she doesn’t have an exclusive contract with TV5 and she is welcome to do a soap for GMA 7. She expressed preference to do a soap either with Marian Rivera or Regine Velasquez.

Direk Joyce is excited to start working on her first filmfest entry titled "Segunda Mano," starring Kris Aquino and Dingdong Dantes. Filming starts in August.

Going back to The Sisters, Direk Joyce doesn’t want to think of the pressure just because she’s coming from a very successful show (Babaeng Hampaslupa) and now she’s at the helm of The Sisters. What is important, she says, is that they are doing their job well and hopes that the audience would support and watch the show. 

* * *

The Philippine Association of Record Industries (PARI), the Association of Video Distributors (AVID Phil) and the Motion Picture Anti film Piracy Council (MPAFPCI) presented Manila Mayor Alfredo S. Lim and Optical Media Board Chairman (OMB) Ronnie Ricketts a Plaque of Appreciation to recognize the efforts of the two gentlemen to help stop the selling and distribution of pirated DVDs of movies and music CDs in Manila, particularly in the Quiapo area. The said place has become a haven of piracy because of the presence of Muslim vendors who sell these products as their means of livelihood.

After Mayor Lim and Ronnie held a dialogue with the vendors, the Muslim vendors agreed to stop the distribution and sale of pirated DVDs of movies and records.

Both officials were pleased with the cooperation extended to them by the vendors, even if it meant loss of their income. Ronnie for his part expressed hope that other Metro Manila mayors would heed their call to stop the proliferation and distribution of pirated DVDs.

Yesterday, Ronnie had a dialogue with QC Mayor Herbert Bautista to map out a similar plan to address the problem of fake DVDs in Quezon City.

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