Friday, August 28, 2015

SUSAN ROCES ON: DIRECTION, CELSO AD. CASTILLO (Sixteen Magazine, July 24, 1974)

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(Courtesy of Mercy G. Masangcay)

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Published in Sixteen Magazine, July 24, 1974

     "Though this is the first time I work with movie director Celso Ad. Castillo," Susan Roces who plays the title role in Rosas Productions' upcoming horror-drama, "Patayin Mo Sa Sindak Si Barbara!" intimates on the set of her, "I find him to be a meticulous worker . . . A perfectionist to a point that now I understand why it takes him so long to finish a picture.

     "For instance, in one scene alone," Susan went on "Celso would make us do it several times, even ten times.  At first, I thought he was doing it out of caprice or whim but later he explained to us that he'd need more materials in order to get the desired effect.  For example, raising my eyebrows.  He'd let me do it for the nth time and the cameras would grind.  First for a long shot.  Then it comes closer and closer until it becomes close-up until the result would be that of penetrating the eyeballs.

     "Or just a mere raising of one's arm.  Celso would like us do it by cadence as he takes the shots.  This way, he says, we will have all the necessary materials to choose from.  And when we saw some of the unedited rushes, I must admit we really have a good picture," Susan further revealed.

     Celso doesn't talk much.  And yet he has a way of making his participants feel at ease.  He'd joke with them, he'd make them more relaxed by teasing them, or something of the kind.  He never throws his weight around.  

     "Unlike other directors that I had worked with before," Mrs. Poe continued, "Celso is different.  Even in the taking of stills for layout purposes, he'd do it himself.  Not because he doesn't trust our stillman, or the person in charge of the layout, but he feels as the director he can add his two cents' worth of suggestion and/or imagination."

     This goes true even with the layout for advertising.  He'd confer with the publicist, the layout artist and the people in the production.  More often he would give his side on his choices.

     True, Celso is not the yes-man type.  He'd discuss with his stars (Dante Rivero, Rosanna Ortiz and producer Susan Roces and assistant director (Jesus Esguerra) and the cameraman (Ricardo Remias) and the scriptwriter (Mike Relon Makiling) on the next scene and after hearing the comments of each, he'd accede if he thinks his idea was overruled.  But if he believes that his idea is still the best he'd go on follow his.

     "Patayin Mo Sa Sindak Si Barbara!" Susan explained is not being rushed to meet the playdate.  It may be shown on the later part of July or middle of August.  What is important to them is to turn out a truly good picture, something that is both entertaining and has quality.  Not for a certain type of audience only but for everybody -- rich or poor, high or low, young or old and just about everybody.

     "We have been shooting for the past two months now -- and without any let-up, you know -- and we still have a few more days to go before the picture is finished.  We have to reshoot some scenes, especially those that require special effects after seeing the rushes that they are not well executed.  Fortunately for us, we have a very cooperative cast that does not complain about the number of days they spend shooting.  What matters, I like to think, is that we have a nice picture to show and to all lof us, the cast -- Beth Manlongat, Mary Walter, Ellen Esguerra, Angie Ferro, Edna Diaz, Venchito Galvez and Rosa Santos -- this is what counts," the star-producer said.

     This is especially true with Celso.  The hard working and very much in-demand director does not accept assignments until he has finished what he is doing.  He is that type of person, you know, one who wants to finish what he has started first before accepting another assignment.  Even if it would take him months to finish it, makes him, indeed, different from others.

     "As a whole, I enjoy working with Celso and I certainly look forward to working with him in another picture given the time and chance to do it.  This hard-working man, knows his business.  For this, Celso has my respect and trust and confidence.  I would not hesitate to work with him again in another picture," Susan mentions quite seriously.

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Monday, August 24, 2015

LIBIS NG BARYO (Sampaguita Pictures, 1964)

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 (courtesy of Simon Santos, Video 48)
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Sunday, August 23, 2015