Dolly de Leon seeks support for Iti Mapukpukaw, excited to film with Nicole Kidman

Charmie Joy Pagulong - The Philippine Star
Dolly de Leon seeks support for Iti Mapukpukaw, excited to film with Nicole Kidman
The first Filipino BAFTA and Golden Globe nominee is asking support for Carl Joseph Papa’s Iti Mapukpukaw (The Missing), the country’s official submission for the 2024 Oscars.

MANILA, Philippines — This 2023 is a very special year for Dolly de Leon because it solidified the fact that the incredible things that happened to her, after starring in the Cannes Palme d’Or-winning film Triangle of Sadness, were real.

She made history as the first Filipino actor to score British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA) and Golden Globes nominations in the supporting actress category for her performance in Ruben Östlund’s class satire Triangle of Sadness.

“I think 2023 is really special for me because it’s like a testament that hindi fluke yung nangyari sa akin. Haha!” she told The STAR in an interview during QCinema International Film Festival (QCIFF) opening night at the Gateway Cineplex 10 in Araneta City last Nov. 17.

“So, for me, I feel more confident now. I’m happier because when 2022 happened it felt like a dream, parang hindi totoo (like it wasn’t real). But 2023 cemented it as a fact that’s why this year is special to me.”

What she is looking forward to next year is filming in Germany for the second season of the Hulu series Nine Perfect Strangers, alongside Hollywood heavyweight Nicole Kidman, which will be streamed on Prime Video. She will also appear in various international projects, such as Ghost Light, Between the Temples, and Grand Theft Lotto.

“I’m expecting that I’m gonna have so much fun (filming it),” she said referring to Nine Perfect Strangers. “I know that I’m gonna have fun doing it. I’m sure it will also be challenging because ang liit lang nung cast, ‘di ba? Also, it’s super cold there, it’s going to be winter when I go there. So it’s gonna be challenging (but) that’s part of the fun.”

In another presscon, she shared, “So Between the Temples, I shot that in April in New York. Ang kasama ko doon ay si Jason Schwartzman. Jason Schwartzman (is the lead star) and then our director is Nathan Silver. And the other one, which I shot recently, about three weeks ago, in Chicago, was Ghost Light. That was written by Kelly O’Sullivan and directed by her as well.

“So those are the two films that are coming out next year, early January, and there will be an announcement soon in December about which festival (these are) going to come out then,” said Dolly who just signed up with the artist management team CreaZion Studios as their newest talent.

On the other hand, her other project, the action-comedy film Grand Theft Lotto, is topbilled by John Cena, Akwafina, Simu Liu, Sean William Scott and Sam Asghari.

“It’s an action-comedy film set in the future of Hollywood… It’s not futuristic but it’s in the very far future of Hollywood and the story is about... there’s a lotto, people buy the lotto and if they win the ticket, whoever wins the ticket, anyone can kill that person and win the money.

The year 2024 will be another hectic year for Dolly de Leon as she will start filming in Germany for Hulu series Nine Perfect Strangers starring Nicole Kidman. She will also appear in various international projects, such as Ghost Light, Between the Temples, and Grand Theft Lotto. The actress was among the special guests at the QCinema opening night at Gateway Cineplex 10 in Araneta City, Cubao, on Nov. 17.
Photo from QCinema’s Facebook page

“So I was very, very nervous.  Kasi syempre parang first time ko magtrabaho doon. I was really intimidated. Pero dahil ang bait-bait nila, they were also warm and (I felt comfortable).”

Dolly also appealed for support for Carl Joseph Papa’s Iti Mapukpukaw (The Missing), the country’s submission for the 2024 Oscars. She is also a voting member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences (AMPAS) which is the selection committee of the annual Oscars.

The animated film Iti Mapukpukaw also stars Carlo Aquino and Gio Gahol. It bagged the Best Film, Best Supporting Actress for Dolly and the NETPAC award at the 19th edition of the Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival.

“That’s what we really need, the support from the people, that is to spread the word about Iti Mapukpukaw (for it to be) nominated, for consideration at the Oscars. Because this is our chance, the Philippines’ chance na makita tayo kung gaano tayo kagaling. It’s really a beautiful film. So I really hope many people watch it there so we will get a nomination,” she said.

She was also “thankful and flattered” to be receiving positive feedback on her performance in the film. “It feels so good to hear that. But really, the kudos go to Carl Papa, the writer, director and animator, and the 90 animators who made that film possible. If not for them, wala yung pelikulang yun so it’s a team effort.”

Meanwhile, Dolly was glad to bond with her co-stars in A Very Good Girl during a recently-held victory party for the successful theatrical run of the dark comedy.

“I’ve missed them. So it was nice to get back together. And you know, for Star Cinema to show their appreciation for all our hard work, ang sarap lang ng feeling that another chapter is closed on a positive note,” she commented.

On the subject of dream projects, she hoped she would get to collaborate with Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos in the future. Yorgos helmed the opening film in this year’s QCinema, Poor Things, starring Emma Stone.

“I really want to work with him and I’ve heard a lot of good things about him (such as) mabait daw siya sa set, ganyan. And that’s why I’m also here (at QCinema) because I love his works,” she said.

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