MANILA, Philippines – Cannes Best Director Brillante Mendoza is set to film a documentary on the annual Holy Week plays depicting the life and sufferings of Jesus Christ.
Having watched the yearly “Senakulo” in Mandaluyong City thrice over the years, Mendoza said he found interest not only in the dramatization of Christ’s passion, but also in those who participate as actors in the annual play.
"Ang mga gumaganap dito sa Senakulo, mga ordinaryong tao lang na nakatira dito. Mga tricycle drivers, carpintero, waiter. Interesado kasi parang yearly penintensiya na nila ito,” he said.
Among those who inspired Mendoza to make his documentary is Senakulo participant Ferdinand Reyes, who has portrayed Jesus Christ for over 20 years. Moved by his commitment to his religious vow, Reyes said he has no plans of bowing out anytime soon.
"Hangga't malakas, tuloy-tuloy parin ang pag labas ko sa Senakulo bilang Kristo,” Reyes said.
It is based on such unwavering dedication that Mendoza plans to develop his documentary, his own “panata.” He said there is also much to learn from the devotees who play parts in the Senakulo, and the experiences that move them to declare their “panata.”
Like many devotees, Mendoza also continues to pray for his good health and that of his family.
"Hiling ko lang na bigyan Niya ako ng malakas na pangagatawan, pati ang pamilya ko at ina."