Si Eri Neeman ang may idea at nag-suggest ng "Pick-up" segment sa gag show ng GMA-7 na Bubble Gang.
Kuwento ni Eri sa PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal), “Kami, yes! Kasi I remember nagkukuwentuhan kami ng buong cast, may sinabi si Rufa Mae [Quinto] na malakas daw ang pick-up lines.
“At saka ako rin, I noticed na malakas ang pick-up lines and it would be nice to make it a segment.
“So I thought of this sketch asi malakas din ang fliptop noon.
“Sabi ko, ‘Ay naku, pagsamahin natin!’
“Yung fliptop, alam mo yung 8 Mile, yung movie ni Eminem, yung nagba-battle sila? Ganun, pero Pinoy.
“I was like, ‘Ay, malakas itong pick-up lines, pero parang battle ‘tapos may ano sa gitna.’
“’Tapos si Ogie ang nakaisip ng character na Boy Pick-Up.
“When I suggested it to Ogie, the week after, ginawa na namin and iyon, nangyari iyon.
“Yung konsepto [ng pick-up lines at fliptop] pinagsama ko lang parang, ‘Okay ito, pick-up lines na battle, hindi pa nagawa iyon.’
“But si Boy Pick-up, credit yun kay Ogie. Kasi kung wala si Boy Pick-up, I don’t think it would be a strong segment.”
Dahil sa tagumpay ng naturang segment, ginawa itong pelikula ng GMA Films at Regal Entertainment Inc.—ang Boy Pick-Up The Movie na palabas ngayon sa mga sinehan.
Sa kabilang banda, n-acknowledge ni Ogie na si Eri ang may idea ng naturang segment sa kanilang gag show.
Masayang kuwento ni Eri, “Actually, he put it in the movie credits, na ’concept by Eri Neeman and Ogie Alcasid.’”
OGIE ALCASID. Ano ang pinakamagandang characteristic ni Ogie na nagustuhan ni Eri at hinangaan niya?
“One thing about Ogie that I really like, as a co-worker, he’s very open to…
"Siyempre Ogie Alcasid ka na, di ba? You’ve been in this industry for a long time.
“I remember him saying when I was doing a sketch na pini-perform nila, ‘Eri, baka puwede nating anuhin ito? Or baka naman mali ako, baka naman mali yung ano dito.’
“And for someone like Ogie to say that na, ‘Baka naman mali rin yung pagkaka-ano ko dito,’ I like that he’s willing to be open to different suggestions and different things.
“Kasi ‘pag ganyan ka na, Ogie Alcasid ka na, you would think na parang alam mo na, like, ‘Ito yung sa akin, alam ko na ito.’
“He’s so open, so and sabi nga rin niya, ‘I’m a student of comedy.’ Natututo pa rin siya.
"So for someone like that who’s so open to working with other people… who’s so open to new ideas, I love that about him. And he’s so willing to help.”
PERFORMER, NOT A WRITER. Sa ngayon, hindi na si Eri ang gumagawa ng sketches ng "Boy Pick-Up" segment sa Bubble Gang.
“No, I stopped I think 20th sketch ng pick-up lines.”
Gumawa raw siya from the very first episode ng "Boy Pick-up" segment hanggang sa 20thepisode.
Nagsimula ang segment na ito sa Bubble Gang April of last year, at sa ngayon ang direktor ng showna si Cesar Cosme na ang gumagawa ng sketches.
Bakit siya huminto sa paggawa ng sketches?
“I learned a lot as a writer for Bubble Gang and I would still write if I have time.
“At inisip ko, kung pipili ako ng isa, it would have to be as a performer.
“Performer talaga ako, e. I’m a host, I’m a comedic actor.
"I have total respect for writers.
“Hindi ko alam kung paano nagagawa ni Direk Cosme na magsulat every week ng two to three sketches.
“So, inisip ko, if I wanna be better, kung aangat ako sa pagiging komedyante, performer ’tsaka host, I have to focus.
“Ako naman, if I have more time, I would love to still write for Bubble Gang.
"But right now, at this point, I need to focus kung gagaling ako as a performer. Kung aangat pa ako I have to focus.”
Si Eri rin ang may likha at sumulat ng segment sa Bubble Gang na "Wonder Boys," isang spoof ng K-pop group na binubuo nina Ogie, Michael V, Antonio Aquitania, at Boy2 Quizon.
Paano siya naging writer?
“When I auditioned [for Bubble Gang], pinasok ako as a writer first.
“Nag-audition ako for the comedy department ng GMA na inayos ni Tita June [Rufino, his manager].
“Nag-start muna ako as a writer for Bubble Gang and then the week after, ginawa akong cast. It was very fortunate.
“Bago kasi nun, I was writing for myself as a stand-up comedian. Sinusulat ko ang mga materials ko.
"But before that, I never had an experience as a writer.
“Wala akong formal lessons or training in writing, basta ginawa ko lang.”
SHOWBIZ ENTRY. Ang unang pasok ni Eri sa showbiz ay bilang contestant sa Mossimo Bikini Summit in 2005.
Hindi siya pinalad na manalo sa naturang modelling search.
“No, I didn’t actually. I didn’t even get in the final round. I just wanna do it for fun naman.”
Ang ibang sumasali sa mga ganitong contests ay nagiging sexy actor. Wala bang offer noon sa kanya to do sexy projects?
“There was but that was not something I wanted to do.
“Hindi ko tinanggap kasi depende naman kung yun ang gusto mo, ako, I wanted to be a host.
“My breakthrough in showbiz was Wazzup Wazzup. That was six years ago, naka-afro pa ako nun.
“’Tapos shortly after, naging host ako sa Cinema News.
“I started out as a host sa Cinema News Weekend with Bianca Gonzales then I did a few movies and soaps.
“I was in Shake Rattle & Roll, ako yung pinatay ni Wendell Ramos. I did Lobo in ABS, I guested in a few shows.”
Paano siya nalipat sa GMA-7?
“Actually, iyon nga, Tita June set up an audition for Bubble Gang and before that, which I think prepared me for other auditions.
“I’m a stand-up comedian, yung sa Comedy Cartel, yung sina Tim Tayag.
“And I also did SPIT [Silly People’s Improv Theatre] with Gabe Mercado.
“Magpe-perform ka base sa suggestions ng mga tao, walang script, puro improvisations.
“We did that for schools, Quantum café, and certain lounges na nagpe-perform kami every week.
“I did that for three years. And kung hindi ko ginawa yun, I wouldn’t be ready for Bubble Gang.”
Isang taon na si Eri sa Bubble Gang last March.
“I have a contract with Bubble Gang, but not with GMA.
“One year, ni-renew ako so I have another year,” banggit niya.
GAY PICK-UP. Going back to pick-ups, there was a time na may nag-try na raw na isang gay na pick-up-in si Eri.
“Binigyan ako ng one thousand!” ang tumatawang kuwento ni Eri.
“Sabi ko, ‘Ano ’to, bakit may pera?’
“I think it was in a bar in Makati. Artista na ako nun.”
Hindi niya kilala yung gay.
“Nakatayo lang ako ’tapos biglang inilagay sa kamay ko yung pera, I was like, ‘Ano to?!’
“Wala, umalis ako.
"I’m sure it happens to some people here and there.”
Siya naman, nasubukan na ba niyang mamik-up ng mga babae sa bars using pick-up lines?
“Kasi yung pick-up lines, sabi nga ni direk Dom [Dominic Zapata], ang galing mo ‘pag … siguro if you’re funny, matatawa sila…
“Siguro magkaka-connection kayo pero… yeah, of course, you talk to a girl, di ba, parang, ‘Hi, what’s up?’”
May sumama na ba sa kanya?
“Gentleman ako!” sabay tawa ni Eri.