Vice Ganda as his characters in 'Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy.' Star Cinema
MANILA -- The 2013 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) entry starring Vice Ganda as four different characters made history on Thursday as the highest grossing Philippine film of all time, according to producer Star Cinema.
"Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy," which won 2nd Best Picture at the annual film festival, has earned P427 million since opening on Christmas Day.
The ABS-CBN's film outfit announced the achievement during a thanksgiving party attended by director Wenn Deramas, network executives including President Charo Santos-Concio and Star Cinema head Malou Santos, and co-producer Viva Films' June Rufino.
For a greater part of the MMFF's two-week run, another comedy film, "My Little Bossings," led the eight competing entries at the box office. However, in the days leading up to the festival's closing on January 7, organizers reported that "Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy" ruled the daily grosses.
The latter film crossed the P400 million milestone at the box office on January 10, and at the time already beat the record set by another comedy film, "Sisterakas," in 2012.
Also an entry to the MMFF that year, "Sisterakas" earned P393 million throughout its run in local theaters. It was also directed by Deramas and co-starred Vice Ganda, Kris Aquino, and Ai Ai delas Alas. The figure, at the time, made it the highest grossing Philippine film, bumping off "The Unkabogable Praybeyt Benjamin."
Yet another Deramas-Vice Ganda project, "The Unkabogable Praybeyt Benjamin" earned P331.6 million during its run.
"Hindi naman namin talaga adhikain na kailangan malampasan," Deramas told reporters on Thursday, when asked if he had set out to surpass his previous films' records. "Ang gusto namin, number one, syempre kumita naman, pero hindi para kailangan lampasan mo 'yung ginagawa mo. Mahirap na pressure sa katawan 'yan."
Deramas credited Vice Ganda for a significant part of his recent films' successes, saying "Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy," in particular, will be difficult to surpass given the comedian's performance in the movie.
"Ibang klase ang 'Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy,'" the director said. "Parang mahirap nang pantayan 'yun ng kahit na sino, o gagawa ka pa ng mas marami pa roon, sa ginawa ni Vice. At sa ginawa ni Vice -- paulit-ulit kong sinasabi ito -- nahirapan ako, pero mas nahirapan si Vice."
In the film he referred to as a "dream-come-true," Vice Ganda portrays quadruplets of both sexes and different sexual orientations, who were split into pairs when they were babies. A sibling in need of a liver transplant brings the four together for the first time, but unresolved issues involving their parents, as well as rivalry, mar the reunion.
Asked for his message to those who helped make "Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy" a success, Deramas said, "Sa lahat po ng may kinalaman kung bakit P427 million ang kinita ng pelikula, maraming, maraming salamat po."
'Girl Boy Bakla Tomboy' director Wenn Deramas looks on as star Vice Ganda (left) accepts the film's 2nd Best Picture award at the 39th MMFF Gabi ng Parangal held on December 27. Photo by Nimfa Chua for ABS-CBNnews.com
"Sabi ko nga, hindi ko kayang bilangin 'yung gano'ng karaming pera, pero posible lamang 'yun dahil paulit-ulit na nanood ang mga tao," he said. "At maraming salamat po dahil pinaligaya namin kayo, at pinaligaya niyo rin kami. Again, iisip at iisip ulit kami ng konsepto kung saan magiging buo ang inyong pasko."
While he is elated with setting a new record, Deramas said his experience juggling several projects at a time, including the film, has taught him to value his well-being.
"Talagang after ng pelikulang ito, talagang tumigil ako sa pagsabay-sabay ng trabahong ginagawa ko. Ngayon, talagang 'Galema' (TV series) lang tapos puro isip lang, puro plano lang. Hindi muna ako kumikilos, until matapos ang isa.
"Iyon ang natutunan ko, na mahalin mo ang sarili mo, kasi nagkasakit nga ako habang ginagawa ko 'to at ginagaw ko ang 'Galema'. So ngayon, para makagawa pa ng mas nakakatuwang pelikula, kailangan alagaan mo ang sarili mo talaga," he said.