Eugene Domingo feels lucky to have shot movies in Cuyo and Italy


Eugene Domingo feels lucky to be part of Panoramanila's Ploning and GMA Films' I.T.A.L.Y. These movies were shot in Cuyo, Palawan (shown in photo) and Italy, respectively.


Comedienne Eugene Domingo greeted the press with an enthusiastic "Buongiorno!" during the grand press conference of Ploning held at Café Ysabel in Greenhills last April 16. This is the Italian way of saying "good morning," a greeting that she used frequently when she portrayed a cabin crew member for the upcoming movie I Trust and Love You (I.T.A.L.Y.).

During the media junket, Eugene explained her role in the movie produced by Panoramanila Pictures Co. In Ploning, the comedienne plays a paralyzed woman who is the mother of Digo (played by a Cuyonon first-time actor Cedric Amit). As Juaning, she lies on a bed all day but never becomes embittered by the disease that has paralyzed her for 30 years.

"Nagpapasalamat ako kay Direk Ga [Dante Nico Garcia] na nagbigay ng pagkakataon na ma-portray ko ang isang paralisado na masaya ang outlook sa buhay. For the first time, hindi ako nagta-tumbling, hindi ako nag-e-elevator acting. Paralisado nga ako so limited lang ang mga galaw ko. Light to moderate acting lang ako dito," she narrates animatedly.

Did she have a difficult time portraying a paralyzed woman?

"Sa theater, wala naman doong komedyante ka lang o dramatista ka lang kaya kailangan lahat kaya mong gawin. So natutuwa ako sa pagkakataong ito na binigyan ako ng ganitong role bilang isang positive ang outlook na paralisado dahil hindi ko naman kinakailangang tumambling o magpaka-kengkoy. Basta gawin ko lang kung ano yung isinulat."

Was she able to meet the real-life person behind the character of Juaning?

"Na-meet ko yung tunay na character na si Juaning at totoong masiyahin siyang tao. Sana nakuha ko yung importanteng substance ng pagkatao n'ya...yung kahit na paralisado o hindi makagalaw, hindi naman importante. Ang maganda, maganda yung pananaw n'ya sa buhay. Nakakahawa yung pagiging positive nung character."

Ploning was shot in Cuyo, Palawan last February. What does she like best about the island of Cuyo?

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"Yung dagat, yung mga tao. Yung mga tao, may sarili silang dignidad, yung pinagmamalaki nila yung natural na yaman ng bayan nila. Hindi sila masyado yung ‘Uy, artista ka!' Hindi, meron silang sariling pinagmamalaki. So kami pa yung talagang ‘Sana bumagay kami sa inyo!' So kami yung parang nag-adjust. So parang natutuwa ako kasi pantay-pantay, kami ang dapat bumagay."

During the press conference, she remarked, "May laban ang Cuyo sa Italy." Why did she say this?

Eugene explained, "Kasi nakanganga ako sa Italy, ang ganda-ganda, just as what I felt during [the] Cuyo shooting. Yung dagat, yung bundok, yung nature, may laban. Maganda yung architecture ng Italy pero yung nature ng Pilipinas, ibang level. May laban!"

I.T.A.L.Y. The newest GMA Films movie is described as a story of destiny, and of personal sacrifices made by Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs). In I.T.A.L.Y., Eugene plays a senior cabin crew member named Lovely. She helps train Jolina Magdangal and Mark Herras. To prepare for their roles, the three underwent training sessions under the Magsaysay Institute of Hospitality and Culinary Arts.

"Magkakasama kami ni Jolina sa cruise, pareho kaming cabin crew. Dun nag-bonding kami pero senior ako sa kanya as cabin crew," explains Eugene.

Did she have a hard time shooting the film? "Madali lang ‘yon! Ang mahirap yung pag-shooting namin mismo sa cruise kasi tiempuhan, minsan bawal kami dito, minsan bawal kami dun, so naga-adjust, paiba-iba. So para kaming mga estudyante na nagthe-thesis. Walang artista dun, lahat trabaho."

Did she get seasick? "Nahilo? Kanya-kanyang tiempo ng suka! But it's an unforgettable experience and I'm very, very grateful na buong cast and crew, talagang bonding. Ang Filipino, kapag nagkasama-sama sa crisis, dun mo makikita hanggang kelan tayo magtutulungan," she says with pride in her voice.

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Eugene Domingo spent 12 days in this European country before returning to the Philippines. The movie Ploning will be shown in all SM cinemas starting April 30.


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