Multi-awarded director Peque Gallaga dies
Peque Gallaga

Multi-awarded director Peque Gallaga dies

Ricky Lo (The Philippine Star) - May 8, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Acclaimed movie director Peque Gallaga died of pneumonia yesterday morning in his hometown in Bacolod City, Negros Occidental.

Gallaga died at 11:45 a.m. at the Riverside Hospital in Bacolod City, where he had been living in semi-retirement. He would have turned 77 in August.

He was brought to the hospital on April 30 due to water in his lungs, according to his manager and fellow Bacoleño June Torrejon-Rufino.

Gallaga had undergone quadruple bypass almost 20 years ago, but it didn’t stop him from directing films. He has done more than 40 films starting with the 1980 classic “Oro, Plata, Mata” as well as the critically-acclaimed “Scorpio Nights.” His last movie was the remake of “Tiyanak,” starring Judy Ann Santos, which was shown in 2014.

He has an unreleased movie titled “Magikland,” produced by former congressman Albee Benitez. The movie is inspired by a theme park that Benitez built in a suburb in Bacolod.

“It’s a great honor to have worked with a great director,” Benitez said.

Gallaga is survived by his wife Maddie and their children Bing, Jubal, Mitch, Wanggo and Datu.

The date of interment will be announced later.

Sad day

Senator and actor Bong Revilla expressed sadness over Gallaga’s passing.

“I, along with the entire movie industry, mourn the death of an institution in the field of art, Peque Gallaga. My family and I are praying and extending our condolences to the bereaved family,” Revilla said in a statement.

“I am so lucky to have Direk Peque – one of the most brilliant directors the movie industry had – as my mentor. He was my director in ‘Dugo ng Panday,’ one of my grandest and most epic movies,” he added.

Revilla said it was because of Gallaga and his late godfather Fernando Poe Jr. that he inherited the role of Flavio. Even in making his new movies, he had always consulted Gallaga.

“He had an eye for art like no other. The grandness of his vision and his designs, which only he can successfully translate into film, made him a legend in his craft. It would be hard for anyone to fill in the gap that he left behind,” Revilla said.

“You will greatly be missed, Direk. Rest well in the loving arms of our Father. Heaven will be a more beautiful place with you there,” he added.

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