In an exclusive interview, Direk Mae Cruz-Alviar talks about her latest directorial job–‘Everyday I Love You’, her reunion movie with Soberano and Gil, after another romantic comedy film—‘She’s the One’, they did together two years ago. This time, the inclusion of Gerald Anderson as Tristan Montelibano, a laid-back ‘haciendero’ and as Audrey’s boyfriend who is in a coma–is enough to rock the boat and pique the interest of LizQuen’s successful team-up.
Opening on the 28th of this month, the latest offering of Star Cinema, a romantic-drama flick and another treat for moviegoers who go for such themed-stories. After the success of their tandem—both on TV and on the silver screen via their last outing—‘Just the Way You Are’, the LizQuen (Liza Soberano and Enrique Gil) loveteam is back with a rather more complex love story plus with Gerald Anderson as the third wheel.
Direk Cruz shares her thoughts on her three lead stars (Gerald, Liza and Enrique).
Since it’s not Direk Mae’s first time to work with Gerald, she has observed the growth of her actor, “I’ve known Gerald the longest and though he has always been a good actor, he has grown even more in the past years.
“He handles his character with more sensitivity now and that I think is his strength. His experience working with so many actors and directors on notable projects is his other strength; it has also helped him.”
On the other hand, she also describes the two other actors—Liza and Enrique’s development as individuals and as partners in their loveteam, “Enrique has always been serious about acting even in ‘She’s the One’. Even more so now… He is unfazed by the success of his recent projects and has kept grounded. He’s really open to learning and improving. His passion and humility is his strength. His openness about his emotions is also his strength.
“Liza’s strength is her depth even at such a young age. You see it in her eyes. Her innocence and honesty are also her strength. You get very raw emotions from her. She also values work and her professionalism is something to highlight with. She has honed ‘drawing’ her emotions which she used to have a hard time when she was new (and much younger).”
Bacolod: The Backdrop of a Love Triangle.
Though it was really required in the story and the city of Silay in Bacolod was the ideal location for the film, for it provides a friendly ambiance for the viewers to watch and imbibe so as for the cast and crew of the film, she also explored other neighboring places in the city. After all, the place wouldn’t be known as a ‘City of Smiles’ if it hasn’t impressed many of its warmth and its hospitality for the visitors.
Though she didn’t require her actors to study the dialect or the native tongue in order to be authentic, culturally; she mentions, “We decided to make them speak in Tagalog so that it would be easier for the audience to understand. I did insert a few Hiligaynon words here and there for the non-Negrenses. We also included actual Negrenses so they could deliver adlibs in their dialect.”
The shooting occurred in Silay and its neighboring places. She adds, “We went there twice. The first was in August and we were there for four days. The next was in September till early October. We were there for 11 days.”
Lessons from the Film?
Alviar, while filming, she has one thing to share for all the families out there in expressing love.
She says that the best gift a person could give to his or her loved one, “Though, it depends on the person but generally, it would be something the person may have mentioned to you in passing and given randomly. It is just a gesture to say—‘I pay attention to what you say and that I won’t wait for a special occasion to give it’.
Among the three lead characters in the film, it’s Enrique’s character—Ethan that she could relate herself with: “I have been hurt before and I put up a wall like him. It was hard to express how I feel and I used to open up to just a chosen few. Like him, when I found the right person, I learned how to give love more freely and to put the person before me.”
‘Everyday I Love You’ also stars Ariel Rivera, Aiko Melendez, Carmina Villaroel, Marissa Delgado, Liza Lorena, Carla Martinez, Eva Darren, Andrea Brillantes—to name a few. If people enjoyed the two Hollywood flicks—‘While You were Sleeping’ (1995) and ‘50 First Dates’ (2004), which have some semblances in terms of ‘conflicts’ between characters; this Star Cinema-produced visual feast is a sure winner as well.
The love triangle of LizQuen with Gerald is reminiscent of the ‘love triangles’ found in Koreanovelas where the third party is someone that viewers would be rooting as well in the midst of Audrey’s choosing for the ‘man of her dreams’ and ‘the man who makes her dreams come true.’