Monday, January 08, 2007

Last Saturday, I went to the surprise birthday party for one of my closest friends Vincent Nebrida at actress Dindi Gallardo's apartment in Manhattan. At the aforementioned occassion, I had the pleasure of talking with Gil Jose Quito, one of the writers of my most favorite film 'Merika. I asked him how he and co-writer Clodualdo Doy del Mundo, Jr. came up with the screenplay for the movie. He told me that Gil Portes wanted to make a movie to be shot in the United States which will star Nora Aunor. In a couple of weeks time the two writers came up with a sequence treatment which the director approved right away. The trouble was that Ate Guy had to fly here earlier than scheduled. She has prior commitments in Manila at the time. A week before the Superstar arrives, Gil and Doy locked themselves in a motel room in New Jersey for ten days so they could finish the screenplay. Gil said that it was easy for him to write the character of Milagros Cruz because he had Ate Guy in mind, that he could actually hear her singing in his head. Immediately after, they gave the first draft of the script for 'Merika which Gil Portes loved so much. I asked if he visited the set often, only a couple of times he said. Since his co-writer went back home to the Philippines, Gil was the one who added the last scene where Milagros Cruz was on top of the Empire State Building. I told him it's one of my two most favorite scenes in the entire film. The other one is where Mila was reading her friend Cora's letter afterwhich, Ate Guy slowly tilts her head up as tears slowly well from eyes. Gil mentioned that Ate Guy practically directed herself in the movie. So Gil Portes didn't give her any instructions on how she should act in each scene in the film, I asked. He said pinabayaan lang siya ni Gil (Portes). 'Merika was great for the simple reason that director had a briliiant script to work with. Apparently, Gil Portes shot the movie using the first draft of the screenplay. Gil said that he met Ate Guy twice during the shoot and she was extremely warm and accomodating.


pauljames said...

hello jojo!!!

happy new year to you!!! i never fail to visit your blog about nora each day, hoping something new about her is posted. words are not enough to tell you how much joy and happiness you've given to genuine nora followers like me. please don't get tired sharing anything about nora aunor. i find a sense of fulfillment knowing she is still there inspite the difficult times she is currently facing. merika, along with himala, and naglalayag are my top 3 best nora aunor movies of all time. her performances in these 3 films are true gems worthy of infinite praises.

Jojo Devera said...

hello pauljames!

i'm glad to see that you're back making comments on my posts. anything about Ate Guy that is of interest will definitely be posted here. i've always been upfront in saying that her performance in 'Merika is tops for me. i was overwhelmed upon learning these stories during the filming of 'Merika. keep on reading! Happy New Year!