Alice Dixson feels challenged to play Albert Martinez's wife in Iglesia ni Cristo movie

by Kaye Estoista-Koo
Mar 6, 2015

Alice Dixson is currently working on the movie Felix Manalo: The Last Messenger of God.

The film, which focuses on the life of Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) founder Felix Manalo, is set for release this May 2015.

Alice plays Honorata Manalo, the wife of the older Felix Manalo portrayed by Albert Martinez.

Dennis Trillo is cast as the young Felix while Bela Padilla is cast as the young Honorata. Alice says she's already done one day of "principal photography while they have done about seven."

The 45-year-old actress describes the movie as an "epic film, and period movie set in the 1900s. It will coincide with the end of the anniversary of INC on May 6."

Directed by Joel Lamangan, this biopic will be released to celebrate INC’s 100th year, which started mid-2014 and ends by May 2015.

Alice admits how for both her and Albert, "it was a very challenging role because it's a period film. The way that we talk now and the way that we talked in the 1900s, it was very poetic, and the expressions are different, the intonations are little more different."

She adds: "Right now, we're more Taglish, nagkaroon ng mixture, a merge, a gel, a combination whereas in that time, it was Spanish Tagalog, and our teachers would teach more in Tagalog and they would stay away from Spanish influence."

She recalls how on set, "we were doing our dialogue and each word has a specific meaning and it's grammatically correct, if you change them around, it doesn't work. So Joel Lamangan goes, 'Ano ba naman yang mga artista ko?'

"We're like, 'Direk please don't stress us out, we're already stressed out!'"

How much preparation did they have to undergo for their roles?

"We had to really just read and understand our lines, somebody would come to us before the take and rehearse our lines with."

She also reveals an anecdote on why she got picked for the role, "Direk Joel said he chose me for a reason. He knew, we joke about it on the set, na ang tawag sa akin Ms. Diction nung teenager pa ako. So for him to challenge me to be part of the movie, and for me to accept the role, he knew that I can do it, so he's been very supportive of us by having a lot of rehearsals before takes just to get comfortable with the movement and with the dialogue, it's great."

Did the principal actors have to actively get an understanding of the INC religion?

"Well, Albert went through immersion, me kasi, nasa bahay lang ako, I play housewife so I don't go out with him a lot and preach the doctrine. But I do know a little bit but I haven't really gone to any...

"I'm supposed to actually, I'm supposed to go to one of their services to find out, but this is really the history and how it started."

She adds, "so have I gone to church at INC? Am I a believer? Not yet, to both questions!"

Alice has one of the most beautiful faces in the industry as well as a body that most women half her age would die for.

She describes that getting to work with her former leading man Albert is interesting. She recalls, "It was twenty years ago and a Joel Lamangan film as well. We played villains, politicians in the province, so now I'm the pastor's wife and he's the pastor."

"I think it's a great feeling na even after 20 years we still have maintained our careers, and that we have the opportunity to work with each other again and reminisce on our previous work together. It's good, it's like we're friends that lost communication but after 20 years have been reunited."

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