October 24, 2003

So I Wrote a Teenybopper

The first movie I wrote (co-wrote actually) that has my name actually credited on it (I've done some ghost writing in the past as part of my previous job) will finally be shown next week. And I'm bracing my heart and ego out for all the reactions (harsh or otherwise) that I will be getting.

As I told you, I didn't really think much when I accepted the offer to write the movie. I know it's a big deal to others but the thing is, I don't really consider myself a writer (yeah, I know, what an ingrate! :D ). All I thought of that time was how to earn money and survive that's why I immediately said yes not remembering the ghosts of past from my Pangako Sa 'Yo writing days. True enough, writing the script brought some major hassle (which I have no intentions of disclosing), but I know I will also be lying to myself if I'll tell you that I didn't have fun writing the movie.

It was a blast! My partner Tessa is a brilliant and fun writer. I like to believe we complemented each other and she brought out the best in me. What I like about us is that we were AWARE we were writing a teenybopper, so instead of being artsy-fartsy or in denial about it, we embraced the formula, pushed it to its maximum and looked for novel ways to tell the story (pop culture references, blatantly aware characters, no holds-barred storytelling, a knowing wink to the audience, almost parody situations, the works!). Once you let go of your inhibitions and not think about the perception of others, that's when the fun of writing starts. I don't wanna be the writer who complains that mainstream media oppressed my creativity because I do am satisfied with our finished draft and fully know that I'm not writing a film for Cannes. :D

A scriptwriter friend once told me that when you write a script, pour your heart and soul in the first draft coz after that draft, the script will never be yours again. Inputs from the director, the stars handler, the creative department, the producers and who's who will be poured in. Moreover, once you submit the final draft, you will leave everything to the hands of the production people - the director's direction, the actor's acting, the postproduction process. Mainstream moviemaking is a team effort and that's something writers should accept, my friend added. True enough, my friend's right.

That is why even if I still haven't seen the final cut, I'm ready to expect the unexpected (but hoping that even a semblance of our vision is retained.) Because what's important to me is that I know Tessa and I did our best to freshen up the teenage romance genre and write the best that we could out of the tried and tested formula; hoping of course, that everyone will appreciate our work.

Yes, I wrote a teenybopper movie and critics and detractors be damned, I am DARN PROUD OF IT! :D

*My First Romance One Love episode starring John Prats and Heart Evangelista is written by yours truly and Theresa de Guzman. The movie opens in theaters October 29 with a premiere night on the 28th in SM Megamall. Help save my non-existent career. Go watch the movie!

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