MANILA -- A biographical film about the beloved Filipino music icon April Boy Regino is in the works, a production company has announced.
“Working title is 'Di Ko Kayang Tanggapin.' It will be inspirational," director Efren Reyes told ABS-CBN News Monday.
The project will be financed by Regino’s friend, Marynette Gamboa of Waterplus Productions, which also released photos of their contract signing last February 2020 at Regino’s residence in Marikina.
Regino died nine months later at aged 59, due to renal disease complications, shocking the local entertainment industry.
Reyes and Gamboa forged their friendship with Regino years ago.
“Sa Mindanao kami nag-bonding. Natuwa ako sa dami ng makukulay na kwento niya. Sabi ko ang gandang gawan ng pelikula buhay mo,” said the veteran actor who envisions Regino’s movie to be akin to the acclaimed biopic of the late blind musician Ray Charles, "Ray," starring Jamie Foxx.
"He sets an example to all aspiring talents in terms of facing struggles. Patunayan mo sarili mo, kahit ano mangyari. He did it on his own, walang nagturo sa kanya. Everything that he aspired for, nagawa niya,” Reyes said.
He also disclosed that highlights of the movie will also include how Regino rediscovered God as he coped with cancer, diabetes, blindness and other difficult health challenges through the last decade.
“Kinilabutan nga ako nang marinig ko kwento niya nung magkasama kami sa Cagayan de Oro. Tapos nakita ko kung paano siya sinasamba ng mga tao sa mga shows duon, kaya sabi ko kailangan makita din ito sa pelikula," added Gamboa.
Waterplus Productions had already done research and a storyboard when they had their contract signing with Regino.
Reyes was poised to shoot Regino’s biopic after his US reunion concert with his brothers last March 2020 but the pandemic burned their plans, along with the unexpected deterioration of Regino’s health.
Gamboa said she has yet to sit down with Regino’s widow regarding her inputs to the project.
Regino’s pop classics from the '90s onwards include “Umiiyak and Puso,” “Paano ang Puso Ko,” “Esperanza,” the dance song
“Yeye Ye Bonnel," the gospel song "Tanging Hiling" and the iconic “'Di Ko Kayang Tanggapin."
The family also cherishes Sarah Geronimo’s rendition of Regino’s hit “Sana’y Laging Magkapiling” in a 2017 "ASAP Natin ‘To" production number with his son, JC Regino.
Reyes has yet to make an announcement of the movie’s full cast, indicating that he may hold auditions for the role of the young Regino in the movie. He is also not discounting the possibility of the participation of JC, who has has the same vocal range and tonal quality of his father.
Last Sunday, "ASAP Natin ‘To" paid a stunning homage to Regino in a full production number with Jed Madela, Nyoy Volante, Erik Santos, Martin Nievera and other artists.