When Vice Ganda learned that he will topbill the remake of a classic 1988 Filipino comedy movie, he initially doubted whether it was the proper time for him to star in a launching film.
"Hindi ako na-excite agad, e. Natakot. Mas nauna akong matakot kesa ma-excite," said Vice. "Pressure, dami kong inisip agad. Parang, tama ba, parang kaya ko ba? Oras na ba? Makakatulong ba sa akin?"
Petrang Kabayo will premiere on October 13. It is produced by Viva Films, and directed by Wenn Deramas with a script penned by Mel del Rosario. The press conference for the film was held on September 21 at the City Best Seafood Garden in Quezon City.
Vice told the press it was Direk Wenn who first informed him about the movie. The comedian said he received the call while judging ABS-CBN's Showtime, the daily talent search that made him a household name.
Vice explained, "Nung itinawag sa akin ni Direk Wenn 'yan, kasalukuyang nasa Showtime ako, nagdya-judge ako. Nawala ako sa sarili, as in nawala talaga ako sa huwisyo. Parang hindi ko na napapanood yung mga nagpe-perform, hindi na ko makapagsalita ng maayos, hindi na ko makapagpatawa. Nataranta.
"It took time bago talaga ako nakapag-isip at nag-usap kami ni Ogie [Diaz, his manager] ng masinsinan nang tama ba 'to ginagawa natin? Ikagaganda ko ba 'to o ikapapahamak? Kasi hindi ko alam kung tama ba, panahon ba? Tapos nag-usap din kami ni Direk Wenn. Sabi niya, 'Wala nang ibang panahon na puwede mong gawin 'to kundi eto na.' E, napakalaki nang tiwala ko sa kanilang dalawa, kay Direk Wenn at saka kay Ogie. Kaya, go lang ng go."
Direk Wenn said Vice Ganda's Petrang Kabayo will be very different from the original film, titled Petrang Kabayo at ang Pilyang Kuting, directed by Luciano Carlos with a script penned by Pablo S. Gomez and Jose Javier Reyes. It starred Roderick Paulate in the lead role of Petra.
"Completely bago. Yung title lang po na Petrang Kabayo. Kasunduan po namin yun na siyempre sa makabagong panahon, kailangan po natin. At saka bigyan din natin ng chance si Vice na ipakita yung kanyang galing, para hindi lang basta maikumpara yung pelikula niya kay Kuya Dick," Direk Wenn explained.
Vice told the press he had already seen Roderick's Petrang Kabayo a couple of times. Yet he still was not able to talk to the veteran comedian to ask for pointers.
"Personally, yung talagang nag-usap kami, hindi pa. Merong mga nakakarating sa aking sinasabi niya, ako rin may mga ipinaparating ako sa kanya," Vice said.
Asked how his film will be different from the original, Vice answered, "Ngayon mas advanced naman na ang paggawa ng pelikula. Mas maganda na yung effects... although ng ganda rin ng effects noon, pero ngayon kasi mas high-tech na. Tapos pangalawa, brand na 'to ng comedy ko. Ako na yun...brand ko na yung panonoorin nila. Malayo na dun sa dating komedya na in-offer nila."
MAKING THE FILM. Vice admitted that making the film was a taxing experience. "Oo. Nasalaula ako sa pelikulang 'to," he said.
One scene had him hauling a horse-drawn carriage along the streets of Quezon City.
"Tumakbo ako mula sa malapit sa ABS-CBN, hanggang sa GMA, ang layo-layo nun," Vice narrated. "Naka-four-inch [heels], four inches ang suot ko nun. Tapos, may kaladkad akong kalesa, tapos yung kalesa, may tatlong taong nakasakay... si John Arcilla, si Ricky Rivero at isang bata [Abby Bautista]. Kinaladkad ko yun mula ABS hanggang GMA. Sobrang hirap, na pag-uwi ko ang sakit na ng braso ko, naninigas na yung legs ko."
Another scene had him running around a forest the whole night.
Vice explained, "Yun nga, yung opening. Yung nagtatatakbo ako sa gubat kasi isang eksena lang 'yon, pero 40 shots. Isang eksena lang pero 40 shots. Mula alas-tres ng hapon hanggang alas-sais ng umaga, ginawa namin ni Direk Wenn yun kaya ngarag na ngarag ang katawan ko, kinabukasan hindi ako nakapag-Showtime."
But Vice said the most difficult part of making the movie was when the script called for tears.
"Pero, bukod dun sa physical stress, nahirapan din ako dun sa drama. Dun sa hospital scene, yung magbe-break down ako, mag-iiyakan kami ng tatay ko, kasi hindi naman ako masyadong magaling, mahusay magdrama-drama't umiyak," he admitted.
SYNOPSIS. Peter Kasimsiman (Vice Ganda) was once a submissive son to his parents. But losing his mother at a tender age left him with an abusive father who is only interested in tending to his carriage horse, Brown Beauty. Peter is eager to win the love and attention of his indifferent Tatay, but an unfortunate incident forces him to run away from home.
His life starts to change course when he meets Helena (Eugene Domingo), the nurturing haciendera who provides him shelter and the unconditional affection his father would never be able to give. Albeit fueled with the guidance of the good-natured foster mother, who's known for her passionate concern for her employees, Peter has an intolerable bad temper especially towards his mother's loyal servant, Maita and the latter's beautiful and gifted daughter, Samantha. Peter's almost perfect life is threatened as people from the hacienda adore the beauty and goodwill of Samantha. These include the estate's striking horse trainer Erickson, the good-looking veterinarian Dickson and even the trusted estate horse Sylvester. Add the unwanted presence of his long-lost sister, Peter's life seems like an everyday living hell.
Little did Peter know that Diobayo, the Goddess of Horses, watches every move he makes as he grows oblivious to other people and the surrounding horses' needs. To teach Peter a painful lesson, Diobayo transforms him into the horse Petra whenever he acts surly and proud.
Will Peter stick to his grumpy personality? Or will he be able to use his "horse instinct" to change for the better?
Petrang Kabayo, produced by Viva Films and directed by Wenn Deramas, will premiere on October 13. Premiere night at SM Megamall and Glorietta will be on October 10.