MANILA — Actor-dancer Mccoy de Leon has started shooting “Yorme: The Musical” as the real-life titular character Isko Moreno. A surprise choice for the role, de Leon shot his first sequences near Pritil, Tondo, Manila as a pedicab driver under the direction of Joven Tan.
De Leon will cover the struggle of Moreno from poverty as a garbage and food scavenger in Tondo until he joined the 1990s youth-oriented talent discovery show “That’s Entertainment,” and later as a movie leading man in several bold and drama potboilers. The bio flick ends with Moreno’s rise as a political star in Manila.
Tan told ABS-CBN News Tuesday that de Leon was a shoo-in for the part. “May hawig sila at may similarities, sa height at iba pa. Pareho ding batang Maynila — si Isko sa Tondo, si Mccoy taga-Divisoria,” Tan said. “At home din si Mccoy sa role dahil sing-and-dance ang movie.”
It’s not a campaign movie for the 2022 elections, insisted Tan, who pitched the story to Saranggola Productions as an inspirational movie way back 2020. It consists of 19 original songs composed by Tan, who previously made his mark as an award-winning composer of ABS-CBN’s “Himig Handog” songwriting competition.
Tan said the movie is also a tribute to the late showman German Moreno, who discovered and mentored Isko and many other young stars. Eric Quizon or Epi Quizon are reportedly being considered to portray the late showman.
“Maraming magka-cameo dito from ‘That’s Entertainment,’” Tan said proudly, citing the guest appearances of the show’s alumni and other stars like Jestoni Alarcon, Tina Paner, Ramon Christopher, Karen Timbol, Lovely Rivero, Ricky Rivero, Brylle Mondejar, Jojo Alejar, Jovit Moya, and Jennifer Mendoza.
“Na-shoot na rin namin eksena ni Mayor Isko as the storyteller of the movie,” Tan added.
“Yorme: The Musical” is a co-production with Viva Films and Saranggola Productions, which earlier produced the Tan-megged movies “Suarez, the Healing Priest” and “Ayuda Babes.” It is slated for theatrical release June 2021, in time for the celebration of the founding of Manila.
Tan has yet to announce who will play the older Moreno at the latter part of the biopic. Earlier considered to play the current-day Moreno were JC Santos, Xian Lim, Matteo Guidicelli, and Marvin Agustin.