Anne Curtis does own underwater scenes for MMFF 2018 entry Aurora

Anne Curtis had to be underwater from 30 seconds to 1 minute while shooting her scenes in Batanes.
Text: Celine Trinidad Interview: Jocelyn Dimaculangan
Nov 15, 2018
Anne Curtis had to be underwater from 30 seconds to 1 minute while shooting scenes for her MMFF 2018 entry Aurora.

Anne Curtis’s director in her upcoming movie, Aurora, revealed that the actress refused to have a double in filming her underwater scenes.

“Ang kagandahan kay Miss Anne Curtis ay wala siyang takot,” filmmaker Yam Laranas told (Philippine Entertainment Portal) in a recent interview.

“Ako ang natatakot para sa kanya,” he added, chuckling. “Meron sigurong double, stand-in lang. Pero si Anne, ayaw magpa-double.”

Anne has underwater scenes because the movie’s story takes place in an island where the passenger ship named Aurora crashes into rocky coasts.

Her character, Leana, is a young innkeeper who helps recover the bodies of the missing passengers for a promised reward.

Aurora, a co-venture of Aliud Entertainment and Viva Films chosen as an official entry to the 2018 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF), was filmed on location in Batanes.

Direk Yam, who co-wrote the script with his wife Gin de Mesa, said that Anne had to be underwater from 30 seconds to one minute to shoot her scenes.


“Pero meron naman kaming abang na diver,” he pointed out. “Ang nakakatawa pa do’n is ako ang pumipigil sa kanya.

“Sabi niya sa ’kin, ‘Direk, how come hindi ako sa water sa Batanes?’ Sabi ko, ‘Hoy, hanggang dito ka lang sa sand. Don’t worry, palalanguyin kita pero sa swimming pool…

“Pero may mga scenes din siya sa Batanes [na open water]. Pero typically, you know, pag kaya ni Anne, gagawin niya lahat.”

Aside from Anne’s tenacity and fearlessness, Direk Yam is awed by the discipline and commitment shown by the actress, who also co-hosts the noontime program, It’s Showtime.

He recalled telling his star that she would have 12 to 15 shooting days in Batanes, so she talked to people at It’s Showtime to allow her to work on the movie.

At work, he described her as “walang arte sa set.”

Direk Yam loved working with Anne so much that he wished he could have her in every movie that he’d make hence.


The director is famous for having his hit horror-drama flick, Sigaw (2004), turned into a Hollywood movie, titled The Echo (2008), with him also at the helm.

Sigaw starred Richard Gutierrez, Angel Locsin, and Iza Calzado. Iza reprised her role in The Echo, acting alongside a foreign cast led by American actor Jesse Bradford, whose filmography includes Presumed Innocent, Bring It On, and Swimfan.

Direk Yam also directed the crime-horror The Road (2011), featuring then newbie Alden Richards, and the mystery-thriller Abomination (2018), which was part of Sinag Maynila Film Festival last March.

“Hindi ko naman sinasabing gagawa ako forever ng horror,” he said. “In fact, for a lack of a better category, yes, horror ang Aurora. But when you see it, yes, it’s also a thriller. Pero pag nakita mo, napaka-dramatic naman ng movie.”

He proudly described Aurora as a big-scale production with an “epic feel” to it. He added that they began filming in June and wrapped up after 25 days, so he had enough time for post-production work.


“We’re fine-tuning kasi maraming special effects,” he said. “Special effects for the sake of telling the story. Hindi siya yung supernatural, alam mo yung fantastic. We have to put a big ship in the rocks of Batanes.”

He added that the musical scoring, with an orchestra playing, was done in Sweden.

“Maganda natapos kami maaga,” he said. “Maraming time to hopefully perfect it. At least, malinis na malinis siya na lumabas.”

Following the MMFF annual tradition, Aurora opens on December 25, Christmas Day, along with the other seven entries: Fantastica; Jack Em Popoy: The PulisCredibles; Mary, Marry Me; One Great Love; The Girl in the Orange Dress; Rainbow Sunset; and Otlum.

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Anne Curtis had to be underwater from 30 seconds to 1 minute while shooting scenes for her MMFF 2018 entry Aurora.
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