Toni Gonzaga and Piolo Pascual was first discovered in a TV commercial which was Toni's start of something big for her. Thirteen years later, they are now teaming up in a movie for the first time. I was able to meet them in Star Cinema office for a conference with movie bloggers.
Starting Over Again is a the Valentine offering by Star Cinema on its 20th year. Directed by Olivia M. Lamasan, who brought you the romantic comedy Got To Believe and Milan. She first worked with Piolo in the movie Milan. Piolo is a "thinking actor" and he "knows his character he plays well". Piolo says he is a team player. His only concern is to do his part for the movie.
For Iza Calzado, Ms. Lamasan said her "eyes can speaks a million words". The director described this movie as a "roller coaster of emotions". It will be a different kind of a date movie because the movie is about exes. Iza says that she is craft driven.
Straight from the success of her last screenplay in Bride For Rent, Ms. Carmi Raymundo also wrote in this movie. Ms. Raymundo says, this movie will define second chances. Ms. Olivia added that she didn't made it as a romantic comedy this time because of the seriousness and reality of the story despite Toni's trademark comedy of which she was known for. It was surprising that there were reactions from the male viewers who cried after seeing the trailer.
When asked what came first the story or the choice of actors. Ms. Carmi said the story but it is not a final draft or final script. Ms. Olivia made them an exercise that made them write their own break up letters which lead the actors to build up their characters. It is still true to the story but it was the actors who gave it life.
Iza's character may remind you of Cameron Diaz's character in My Best Friend Wedding but she is not as bubbly and comical. Also, a confrontation between a current and the ex is unavoidable.
When asked what the actors learned from the movie, Piolo answered it is really important to have a closure. That's were the healing will take place. Iza shares that as long as you are still affected by emotions. May it be anger, feeling hurt or betrayed, you may be still feel something about the person.
Toni's answer: Treasure the person, treasure what you have. For the closure of the blog conference, Piolo says get ready to cry before leaving the cinemas. I may not be honest about what I feel but I know that everyone can relate to this situation in the movie. Starting Over Again opens in cinemas February 12. Don't forget to bring your tissues and handkerchiefs.
Tip for the guys: A gentleman never leaves the house without a white handkerchief. I know it's old school but you will thank me later.