Marife Necesito has had the enviable job of working withMexican actor Gael Garcia Bernal and Hollywood actress Michelle Williams in aninternational film. Their film Mammoth will be screened in the 2009Cinemanila International Film Festival that will take place from October15-25 in Taguig.
PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) was able to chat with the actress afterthe special screening of Fidel at Fully Booked, The Fort, recently.
Marife was cast as Jovy, the girlfriend of Lance Raymundo (who plays thetitular character Fidel). This indie film directed by Shandii Bacolod is basedon accounts of male OFWs who were raped by employers in the Middle East. (CLICK HERE to read more about the film Fidel)
OFW IN MAMMOTH. Marife went through four levels of auditions soshe could land the role of the nanny in Mammoth.
When asked to describe her role in the film, she shared, "OFW ako na pumasok nayaya sa anak ni Michelle [Williams] and Gael [Garcia Bernal]. Kaya Mammoth ‘yongtitle niya, kasi extinct na ‘yong mammoth, parang dinosaur. Ang message kasiniya, habang nandito pa ‘yong mga mahal mo sa buhay, mahalin mo na sila,pahalagahan mo. Kasi baka sa susunod parang...extinct na. Sa mga litrato nalangmakikita, gano'n. Blessed nga ako na napili ako do'n sa project."
How was it like working with Gael?
"Masaya. Kasi wala naman kasing mgadiva-diva. Tapos, parang effortless naman siya as an actor. Walang ka-ereere."
Marife was able to go to the United States and Europe to shoot her scenes in Mammoth.The interior shots were done in Sweden and the exterior shots were done inNew York. Even the young boys who played her kids were also brought to Swedento shoot indoor scenes.
"Yung nanay ko po sa movie, si Ms.Chiqui del Carmen, yung dalawa ko pong sons sa movie sina Martin Delos Santosat Jan David Nicdao. Yung brother ko naman sa movie si Perry Dizon.
"Yung mga bata nakapag Sweden rin sila. Nakakatuwa kasi gumawa sila ng bahay ngFilipino sa Sweden."
As the nanny of Sophie Nyweide, the daughter of Michell's character, Marife shot most of her scenes with the Hollywood actress.
"Ang movie namin tungkol sa dalawang ina na nasa isang bahay. Isangsuccessful surgeon at isang yaya na Pilipino na nasa ibang bansa, inaalagaanang anak niyang nandito sa Pilipinas samantalang ang anak niya nandito saPilipinas na inaalagaan ng kanyang lola. It's very Filipino. Di ba, karamihansa atin nag a-abroad?
"Sila, mayayaman sila pero mayhinahanap pa rin sila sa sarili nila na hindi makita. Hindi nila makita yungpriority nila. Magiging ina ba ako or magiging surgeon ba ako? Hindi mo alamang priority mo dahil ang dami mong responsibilidad. Sa bayan mo rin, mayresponsibilidad ka ring manggamot kung doctor ka."
Marife points out that the film also tackles the difference in economicopportunities between the "haves"and the "have-nots."
She argues: "Silang mga nasa First World countries, may choice sila kasimayayaman sila. Passion lang nila ang propesyon pero tayong nasa Third World,wala tayong choice. Lalo na kung maraming umaasa sa iyo."
She also differentiated the directing style of Swedishdirector Lukas Moodysson from Filipino directors.
"Si Lukas, ang atake niya kasi sa pagdidirek, controlled.Ganoon kasi silang mga Russian at pati na rin sa Scandinavian countries.Controlled sila 'saka very quiet. Hindi nagle-lecture ang pelikula nila peromaapektuhan ka. Ang audience ang bahalang umiyak. Hindi niya pinapaiyak ang mgaartista niya."
Marife narrated that she started as a theater actress until she was cast in LavDiaz's critically acclaimed Ebolusyon ng Pamilyang Pilipino. She citesNora Aunor as her idol because of her Russian style of acting: theuse of one's eyes to convey emotions even without dialogue.
SYNOPSIS. Leo (Gael Garcia Bernal, Motorcycle Diaries, Y Tu MamaTambien) and Ellen (Michelle Williams, Brokeback Mountain) are asuccessful New York couple, totally immersed in their work. Leo is the creatorof a booming website and has stumbled into a world of money and big decisions.Ellen is a dedicated emergency surgeon who devotes her long shifts to savinglives. Their eight-year-old daughter Jackie (Sophie Nyweide) spends most of hertime with her Filipino nanny Gloria (played by Marife Necesito). Even whenEllen has time for her, Jackie prefers to be with Gloria.
Gloria has two children of her own, young boys staying in thePhilippines with their grandmother. The older boy tries to find a job so thatGloria doesn't have to work abroad.
When Leo travels to Thailand on business, he unwittingly sets off a chain ofevents that will have dramatic consequences for everyone.
Mammoth is one of the films that will be exhibited inthe 11th edition of Cinemanila International Film Festival that will be heldfrom October 15-25 in Taguig City.