Jerry Lopez Sineneng on directing Widows’ Web trending scene: “Pawis na pawis ako diyan."

by James Patrick Anarcon
Apr 1, 2022
Widows' Web trending scene
This trending scene of Vaness del Moral, Ashley Ortega, Carmina Villarroel, Karenina Haniel, and Pauline Mendoza in Widows' Web is most "dreaded sequence" for its director, Jerry Lopez Sineneng (not in photo)! He explains, "Ito, in the middle of a highly tense scene, biglang may maid na nakakatawa ‘tapos biglang balik sa away na naman na matindi, bigla namang may Hillary na magpapaputok ng baril, balik sa away, biglang iiyak!"
PHOTO/S: Widows' Web (GMA-7)

Kapuso viewers were amused by the "hagdanan" confrontation scene in one episode of the prime-time series, Widows’ Web, that aired on March 21, 2022.

The scene featured lead stars Carmina Villarroel, Vaness del Moral, Pauline Mendoza, and Ashley Ortega, together with supporting cast members Karenina Haniel, Mosang, Mike Agassi, Vanessa Pena, Christian Vazquez, and Anjay Anson.

In the story, Barbara (Carmina) learns that his late brother, Alexander Sagrado III (Ryan Eigenmann), is bequeathing his properties, including the Sagrado mansion, to his wife, Jackie (Ashley).

Barbara, who lives in the mansion, goes ballistic and accuses Jackie of killing Alexander.

Jackie snaps and sends Barbara packing.

Widows' Web hagdanan scene

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Next scene shows Jackie and Barbara having a showdown at the staircase with Hillary (Vaness) and Elaine (Pauline) intervening as the maid Rose (Karenina) brings down the suitcase stuffed with Barbara's things.

Widows' Web hagdanan scene

The drama turns into comedy as the maid scurries up the stairs lugging the suitcase, on order of Barbara, and down again with the baggage, on order of Jackie.

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Widows' Web hagdanan scene

Scene-stealer with a bang: Hillary firing a shot gun to stop everyone from fighting.

Widows' Web hagdanan scene

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It all comes down to melodrama with Jed (Anjay) in tears begging his Tita Jackie to let his mom, Barbara, stay.

Widows' Web hagdanan scene

The scene ended up as one of the most-viewed videos on GMA-7’s Facebook, TikTok, and YouTube channels that week.

In an exclusive interview with PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal), the creative and production team of Widows’ Web shared interesting stories and trivia about the trending scene.

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Creative manager RJ Nuevas said as one of the show's writers, “Kami isusulat lang namin iyan, o mahaba ang eksena.

“Nagsigawan sila, e, di nagsigawan, nagbaba ng maleta, e, di nagbaba ng maleta. Hindi kasi namin naiisip paano niyo ima-mount!”

But for Jerry Lopez Sineneng, the main unit director of the series, that particular scene was actually one of his “dreaded sequences,” and his producers knew it!

He told PEP.ph, “At the back of my mind, ‘Diyos Ko, sana ma-pack up iyan, sana huwag muna ngayon!’

“Kasi parang feeling ko, I will never be ready for a scene like this kahit 38 years old na po ako at matagal na sa industriya.

"May mga kinatatakutan pa rin akong mga scenes and this is one of those.”

According to Direk Jerry, it was daunting to be directing several actors in one scene, each depicting a different emotion that, much like a musical conductor, he had to harmonize.

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He explained, “Ang pinakamahirap sa mga ganyan kalalaking eksena, yung timpla ba, yung timpla, e.

“Kung may bago akong natuklasan working for the first time with GMA, itong scene na ito.

“Never have I directed a scene na nag-combine ng away, drama, and a little comedy.

"Ang nasubukan ko pa lang i-direct, drama na babali sa dulo, magiging konting light.

“Pero ito, in the middle of a highly tense scene, biglang may maid na nakakatawa ‘tapos biglang balik sa away na naman na matindi.

"Bigla namang may Hillary na magpapaputok ng baril, balik sa away, biglang iiyak!

“So talagang iyon ang kinakatakot ko kung paano ko titimplahin.”

Widows' Web hagdanan scene

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Direk Jerry, who has been directing TV dramas since the 1990s, admitted to still getting the jitters when directing big scenes.

But he was happy that the actors involved in the "hagdanan" scene were very cooperative.

He recalled, “Pawis na pawis po ako diyan habang bina-block ko, talagang sobrang tagaktak ang pawis ko kahit nasa Tagaytay, tagaktak ang pawis ko sa nerbiyios.

“Inaamin ko, kinakabahan pa rin ako at ipinagdasal ko talaga yung scene na ito kasi one wrong… off-tune, masisira yung buong eksena talaga, e.

“So feeling ko, kailangan kalkuladong-kalkulado lahat. In fairness kela Carmina, ‘Mina, 5 percent less, 5 percent more. Ashley, give me 7 percent more.’

“Kahit imbento ko na lang iyang 7 percent more, ha, pero nage-gets nila talaga!

“Kaunting overboard lang ng isang character, masisira na yung buong scene! Kaya pag pati yung si Rose, yung timpla niya is perfect.

“Siyempre, kahit noong ‘tapos ko na yung eksena, yung kaba ko ang taas pa rin.

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"Kaya noong napanood ko noong airing, para akong nabunutan ng malaking pako, okay naman pala siyang lumabas!”

Direk Jerry considers the "hagdanan" scene as one of the “most memorable scenes” he had done in his entire career.

He elaborated, “Tuwang-tuwa ako nang makita kong higit two million views na siya, yung mga ganon.

"Tuwang-tuwa ako na yung kaba ko, tama naman pala yung nagawa ko at na-appreciate ng mga tao.”

But then, according to Direk Jerry, more “dreaded scenes” are yet to be seen in the coming episode of Widows’ Web.

Widows' Web hagdanan scene

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STORY BEHIND THE HAGDANAN SCENE

Speaking of writing the scene, RJ said it was natural for the characters to react the way they did given the circumstances of their lives, which led to the confrontation scene after the reading of the late patriarch's will.

RJ said, “Hindi siya talaga, ‘Ay, mag-iisip kami ng ganitong eksena,’ hindi, e."

“It came naturally after lahat ng progression nag-bi-build up leading to that.

"May will reading, alam naman natin na sa will reading ang mapupunta kay Jackie ay mag-aaway na sila ni Barbara so it led to awayan.

“Sa unang version lang [ng script], after the will reading kasi, pinalayas, ganyan.

“I-push natin as in ipina-impake ni Jackie ang gamit niya at ipinalabas kela Delia (Mosang), nalaman yun ni Barbara kaya lalong nagalit si Barbara, yun lang ang ipinadagdag ko.”

Widows' Web hagdanan scene

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RJ expressed appreciation for his writing team, headed by Ken de Leon, for the creative script.

He said, “Magdadagdag na lang ako ng, ‘Uy, bakit hindi natin i-push!’

“Ipina-impake ni Jackie ang mga gamit, ipinababa kaya may mga eksenang habang nag-aaway sila, e, agaw eksena itong si Rose! Kinabog silang lahat ng maleta.

“For me, kudos kela Ken, kapag binigay nila ang script, halos 90 percent nandiyan na, magpapadagdag na lang ako ng 10 percent na enhancements.”

As for Ken, his team made it a point to add entertainment value to the roller-coaster depiction of emotions, which made the scene exciting to watch.

He explained, “When we were brainstorming with my co-writers, it’s always fun, it’s a fun concept kahit drama siya. Humor also plays part in the development of the story.

“May katulong, itatapon ba niya or ibabalik ba niya ang maleta? Si Hillary, ayaw tumigil magbangayan ng dalawa, kukuha ng shotgun.

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“I think humor should play a part… [it] makes the show more entertaining, but, at the same time, after mong matawa, bigla ka namang maiiyak with Jed, biglang nakiusap si Jed.

“So may play of emotion na natatawa sila ‘tapos biglang pipihit na susunod na eksena ay maiiyak sila.

“So iyon yung na-e-excite kaming gawin na hindi lang siya pure drama or pure suspense, we want the viewers to have a roller coaster of emotions sa panonood, and I think in that whole episode, ibang roller coaster ng emosyon yung naramdaman.”

EVEN PRODUCERS ENJOYED THE SCENE

Helen Rose Sese, GMA-7’s assistant vice president for drama and Widows’ Web program manager, admitted it was a hard scene.

It was, in fact, more difficult for Ashley who had to do the scene after an eye emergency.

Helen said, “Kudos kay Direk, nai-mount niya nang tama. Ang tagal na blocking niyan at saka rehearsal, yung tipong, ‘Lalagpas ba tayo ng 14 hours of work? Hindi pa naman, hindi kaya iyan.

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“Hanggang sa si Direk Jerry was able to do it perfectly as I imagined the scene to be.”

RJ added, “Sabi ni Helen, yung eksena as she imagined it. Ako, more than what I imagined.

“Ilang beses ko na siyang pinanood, meron akong friend na nag-text sa akin na limang beses na niyang pinanood.

“Sabi ko, 'Me, too,' because I previewed it ‘tapos I will preview it again ‘tapos ipinalabas sa TV, papanoorin ko pa rin 'tapos papanoorin ko pa siya sa YouTube just to see the comments ng mga tao!”

Widows' Web hagdanan scene

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Executive producer Kaye Atienza-Cadsawan said the scene was really the result of everyone's hard work—the staff, director, creatives, and artists.

She said, “Actually, yung eksena na iyon, sobrang hirap niya, sobrang pagod yung mga artista, pero after noong take, masaya lahat, e.

“Even the staff, tuwang-tuwa sila kasi nandoon yung ano. e, yung may drama 'tapos may comedy. Ang gandang gawin noong eksena so lahat masaya noong natapos kahit pagod na pagod yung artista.”

RELATED VIDEOS:

Vaness del Moral on PEP Live:

Ashley Ortega and Pauline Mendoza on PEP Live:

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This trending scene of Vaness del Moral, Ashley Ortega, Carmina Villarroel, Karenina Haniel, and Pauline Mendoza in Widows' Web is most "dreaded sequence" for its director, Jerry Lopez Sineneng (not in photo)! He explains, "Ito, in the middle of a highly tense scene, biglang may maid na nakakatawa ‘tapos biglang balik sa away na naman na matindi, bigla namang may Hillary na magpapaputok ng baril, balik sa away, biglang iiyak!"
PHOTO/S: Widows' Web (GMA-7)
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