Mara Lopez is busy doing a Cinemalaya film under the direction of director Alvin Yapan. Titled Debosyon, the film is based on a Bicolano love story. Mara will be paired with ABS-CBN actor Paulo Avelino.
Mara is cast as a mysterious girl named Salome. Mando (played by Paulo Avelino) falls in love with Salome after meeting her when he got lost in a forest.
How does Mara feel about being being part of the 9th edition of Cinemalaya?
"This is gonna be my first time in Cinemalaya, so napaka-overwhelming kasi the past few years I would always attend para suportahan ang pelikulang Pilipino and this time, kasama naman ako as a lead for Debosyon," she said.
The former Survivor Philippines castaway also added, "I feel very grateful and blessed and honestly, it's a dream come true.
"It's such a privilege that right after being part of Cinema One Originals 2012 and emerging Best Actress, I am now part of the No. 1 film festival in the country, Cinemalaya.
"I am looking forward to attending film festivals in other countries as well."
Mara Lopez won Best Actress for her perfomance in the 2012 Cinema One Originals entry Palitan directed by Ato Bautista.
Debosyon marks the first time that Mara was given the chance to work with Paulo. How was it like working with him?
"Nakakatuwa si Paulo kasi nakakasundo niya lahat. We got along really well.
"First time we met was to read lines and we started talking about the things we can do to understand Debosyon and our characters better," narrated Mara.
She admitted, "Pareho rin kami mahilig sa mga movies.
"We really enjoyed Bikolano food too!
"Working with him and Direk Alvin was such a great experience.
"There was never a dull moment and lagi kaming tumatawa sa set."
"It was such an honor working with an award-winning director and actor," Mara revealed.
What is the edge of this movie compared to other Cinemalaya entries?
Mara pointed out, "I think that the fact that the whole film is in Bicolano already gives it an edge from other films.
"We had to speak Rinconada Bikol [dialect] throughout the entire film.
"Mahirap pero very rewarding. It is not your typical love story."
She even quoted, "To love is to have faith."
"Panoorin niyo ang Debosyon kung gusto niyong kiligin, maiyak, matuwa, at ma-in love over and over again," Mara said with a smile.
She then added with a laugh, "Huwag kalimutan, magdala ng date!"