MISSED – Missed very much in showbiz is master director Romy Suzara, whose credits include memorable and award-winning movies in varied genres – drama, action, horror, comedy. But why was he away for many years?
Romy confessed he was affected by the passing away of two close friends: The King Fernando Poe Jr., and The Other King Rudy Fernandez. He was supposed to do films for FPJ and Daboy but sad events came in the way. In fact, he has started shooting the FPJ picture.
“Nawalan ng ganang magtrabaho” is how Romy put it. But just the same, he managed to do some docus and continues directing the Sunday Healing Mass for ABS-CBN. Romy belongs to the Catholic charismatic community Oasis of Love.
BACK – But Romy Suzara is back via “Tinik,” an entry to the ongoing All Masters filmfest. “Tinik” is the engrossing story of an aging and lonely gay couturier in love with a young man who, in turn, is having an affair with a fashion model. The subject is treated with sympathy and understanding. A man’s search for the true love of another man.
“Tinik” has been in Romy’s mind since the ’80s. He originally wanted Lino Brocka, Phillip Salvador, and Elizabeth Oropesa to play the lead roles. But when be broached the idea to Brocka, the future National Artist laughed, “Romy was mo akong isali sa kalokohan mo.”
Then came the All Masters filmfest of the Film Development Council of the Philippines, which gave seed money for the projects of vetran directors like Romy, Gil Portes, Mel Chionglo, Joel Lamangan, Chito Roño, Elwood Perez, Joey Reyes, Peque Gallaga, and Lore Reyes.
“Tinik” is the story idea of Romy and Joe Carreon, scripted by Raymond Diamzon and Manin Borleza.
CAST – Playing the principal characters in “Lihis” are Ricardo Cepeda as the couturier, Lemuel Pelayo as the young lover, and Alexis Navarro as the model.
Romy said he has difficulty shooting the love scenes of Ricardo and Lemuel, but then his actors performed well. Lemuel, he said, was game, no problem with sex and nude scenes.
Raymond Bagatsing and Hayden Kho initially said yes to Romy’s offer, but snags came in the way. Raymond was busy with a teledrama, while Hayden chickened out, saying he wanted “to find himself” in Mongolia. Whatever that meant.
Two Europe-based filmfests expressed interest in “Tinik” based alone on the synopsis. But FDCP chairman Briccio Santos is taking care of the foreign market. The entries to the All Masters filmfest are showing nationwide exclusively in all SM theaters.
FILMOGRAPHY – Romy Suzara studied filmmaking New York and started directing in the ’70s.
His impressive filmography includes “Pepeng Shotgun,” “Somewhere,” “Mga Uod at Rosas,” “Laruang Apoy,” “Mga Bilanggung Birhen (sharing directorial credit with the late Mario O’Hara), “Sutla,” “Anak ng Aswang,” “Hamog.”
Romy was named best director by the Film Academy of the Philippines for “Mga Uod at Rosas,” topbilled by Nora Aunor, Lorna Tolentino, and Johnny Delgado.
Another best director award came from PATAS for television show “Yan ang Misis Ko.”