Marife Necesito recalls her shooting with Gael Garcia Bernal

by Jocelyn Dimaculangan
Oct 6, 2009
(Top frame) Gael Garcia Bernal poses with Mammoth co-star Marife Necesito during the 59th Berlin Film Festival in Germany. (Bottom frame) Marife, Sophie Nyweide, and Michelle Williams shot some indoor scenes in Sweden. Mammoth will be screened in the 11th edition of Cinemanila, which will be held from October 15-25in Taguig City.

Marife Necesito has had the enviable job of working with Mexican actor Gael Garcia Bernal and Hollywood actress Michelle Williams in an international film. Their film Mammoth will be screened in the 2009 Cinemanila International Film Festival that will take place from October 15-25 in Taguig.

PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) was able to chat with the actress after the special screening of Fidel at Fully Booked, The Fort, recently.

Marife was cast as Jovy, the girlfriend of Lance Raymundo (who plays the titular character Fidel). This indie film directed by Shandii Bacolod is based on 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 so she could land the role of the nanny in Mammoth.

When asked to describe her role in the film, she shared, "OFW ako na pumasok na yaya sa anak ni Michelle [Williams] and Gael [Garcia Bernal]. Kaya Mammoth ‘yong title niya, kasi extinct na ‘yong mammoth, parang dinosaur. Ang message kasi niya, 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 nalang makikita, gano'n. Blessed nga ako na napili ako do'n sa project."

How was it like working with Gael?

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"Masaya. Kasi wala naman kasing mga diva-diva. Tapos, parang effortless naman siya as an actor. Walang ka-ere ere."


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 in New York. Even the young boys who played her kids were also brought to Sweden to shoot indoor scenes.

"Yung nanay ko po sa movie, si Ms. Chiqui del Carmen, yung dalawa ko pong sons sa movie sina Martin Delos Santos at 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 ng Filipino 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. Isang successful surgeon at isang yaya na Pilipino na nasa ibang bansa, inaalagaan ang anak niyang nandito sa Pilipinas samantalang ang anak niya nandito sa Pilipinas na inaalagaan ng kanyang lola. It's very Filipino. Di ba, karamihan sa atin nag a-abroad?

"Sila, mayayaman sila pero may hinahanap pa rin sila sa sarili nila na hindi makita. Hindi nila makita yung priority nila. Magiging ina ba ako or magiging surgeon ba ako? Hindi mo alam ang priority mo dahil ang dami mong responsibilidad. Sa bayan mo rin, may responsibilidad ka ring manggamot kung doctor ka."

Marife points out that the film also tackles the difference in economic opportunities between the "haves"and the "have-nots."

She argues: "Silang mga nasa First World countries, may choice sila kasi mayayaman sila. Passion lang nila ang propesyon pero tayong nasa Third World, wala tayong choice. Lalo na kung maraming umaasa sa iyo."

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She also differentiated the directing style of Swedish director 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 pero maapektuhan ka. Ang audience ang bahalang umiyak. Hindi niya pinapaiyak ang mga artista niya."

Marife narrated that she started as a theater actress until she was cast in Lav Diaz's critically acclaimed Ebolusyon ng Pamilyang Pilipino. She cites Nora Aunor as her idol because of her Russian style of acting: the use of one's eyes to convey emotions even without dialogue.


SYNOPSIS. Leo (Gael Garcia Bernal, Motorcycle Diaries, Y Tu Mama Tambien) and Ellen (Michelle Williams, Brokeback Mountain) are a successful New York couple, totally immersed in their work. Leo is the creator of 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 saving lives. Their eight-year-old daughter Jackie (Sophie Nyweide) spends most of her time with her Filipino nanny Gloria (played by Marife Necesito). Even when Ellen has time for her, Jackie prefers to be with Gloria.

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Gloria has two children of her own, young boys staying in the Philippines with their grandmother. The older boy tries to find a job so that Gloria doesn't have to work abroad.

When Leo travels to Thailand on business, he unwittingly sets off a chain of events that will have dramatic consequences for everyone.

Mammoth is one of the films that will be exhibited in the 11th edition of Cinemanila International Film Festival that will be held from October 15-25 in Taguig City.

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(Top frame) Gael Garcia Bernal poses with Mammoth co-star Marife Necesito during the 59th Berlin Film Festival in Germany. (Bottom frame) Marife, Sophie Nyweide, and Michelle Williams shot some indoor scenes in Sweden. Mammoth will be screened in the 11th edition of Cinemanila, which will be held from October 15-25in Taguig City.
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