It's not everyday that you get to cast your dream ensemble as a filmmaker. So when legendary director Olivia M. Lamasan found an opportunity to cast Sharon Cuneta in what she described as her "dream project", she bravely took the chance and fulfilled it once and for all.
In the livestream event for the digitally restored version of "Madrasta", the two legends reunited virtually as they talked about how the 1996 family drama came to life: a concept Direk Olivia, or Inang as she's fondly called, only envisioned with Charo Santos-Concio.
"Dream project namin ni Charo itong concept na 'to,” Inang revealed. “Hindi pa ako director noon and we've always wanted to do a movie about a stepmother."
According to her, she has always imagined Sharon Cuneta to portray such a complex role.
"Third movie ko ito, eh, after 'Maalaala Mo Kaya' (The Movie) and 'Sana Maulit Muli' tapos ito," she furthered. "Sabi ko, 'My God, ang bagay talaga dito si Shawie (Sharon).' As stepmother, usually, negative ang connotation. 'Pag si Sharon ang nagbigay buhay dito sa character na 'to, maiiba," she said.
For her part, the Megastar could still vividly recall how she was tapped by Star Cinema to do the project, her very first with the film production outfit.
"Naalala ko Inang nag-set ng meeting noon sa Makati. Pagbukas ko ng pinto, bakit nandito lahat ng bosses pati 'yung mga hindi ko nakakasama? They sent me storylines to choose from, and the very next day, apat na storya 'yung dumating sa'kin," she recounted.
"Then I read the stories with my best friend. I was reading with her then dalawa [sa pitches] ang nag-jump out sa'kin. Pero iba 'yung 'Madrasta' — wala pang title noon — tapos nag-tinginan kami. 'Anong gusto mo?' 'Yung stepmother'. 'Pareho tayo!' Sabi kong ganun," she added.
At that moment, Sharon knew it was the perfect plot to mark her first movie with Inang and Star Cinema.
"Agad-agad, I gave feedback," she continued. "Sabi ko, I really want this story about the stepmother. Agad-agad, ginawa ng Star Cinema and before I knew it, I was doing costume tests, look test; iba-ibang hairdo kasi iba-iba look ko sa 'Madrasta'. Tapos shooting na kami," she shared.
While Inang revealed that she actually was very "tensed" with the idea of working with an award-winning actress like Sharon, it was actually the opposite for the Megastar knowing she's handled by the best.
"Kaibigan ko si Inang. Alam kong I'd be in good hands, and so I didn't care. Wala akong qualms at all, I was so ready and I was actually so excited to be directed by you kasi kilalang-kilala mo ako," she enthused.
"Madrasta" also stars Christopher de Leon, Zsa Zsa Padilla, Claudine Barretto, Patrick Garcia, and Camille Prats. Relive this 1996 gem in the bite-sized version below:
You can also watch the digitally restored and remastered version of the movie on KTX.ph!
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