Winwyn Marquez on a roll with surprise inclusion of movie at MMFF

Mario Dumaual, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 24 2021 06:13 PM

Winwyn Marquez Handout
Winwyn Marquez in 'Nelia.' Handout

MANILA -- Winwyn Marquez is overwhelmed that her suspense drama movie “Nelia” made it as one of the eight official entries of the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) from a reported field of 19 entries. 

It’s arguably the biggest surprise in the 2021 film fest selection, edging out other movies made by notable veterans. 

“I’m both honored and afraid that it made it from the many entries submitted to the MMFF, “ Marquez told ABS-CBN News Tuesday, citing the fact that it is pitted against other official entries like “Bawal ang Lumabas,” “ A Hard Day” and “Kung Maupay It Panahon.” 

“Honored ako because and'yan din sina Charo Santos, Daniel Padilla, Kim Chiu, John Arcilla and others sa film fest pero takot din ako dahil sa box office," Marquez said of “Nelia” which she considers her biggest break in showbiz. 

This year also marks the return of the MMFF to theaters after the difficult challenge of online showing amid the pandemic lockdown in 2020. 

Marquez portrays the title role, a nurse who is at the center of mysterious incidents at the hospital where she works. She plays opposite veteran actor Raymund Bagatsing in the movie directed by Lester Dimaranan with screenplay written by one of its producers, Melanie Honey Quiño. 

Marquez downplays early feedback that her performance is worthy of a best actress nomination. “Akooo?!,” she laughed. 

Her father Joey Marquez also ribbed her, she related. "Sabi niya, 'Hala, ano ka ? Andyan si Charo Santos!'” 

She credits Bagatsing as the driving force of the movie which was shot in Gapan, Nueva Ecija at the height of the pandemic surge this year. “Pang best actor siya talaga. He motivated and drew out the best in me,“ she said, also saluting her co-stars including Mon Confiado, Dexter Doria, Lloyd Samartino, Dan Alvaro, Ali Forbes and Shido Roxas. 

“'Di pa rin ako makapaniwala we made it sa MMFF. Pero sobrang grateful din kami sa A & Q Production na napili ang 'Nelia' dahil alam ko, buong cast and production binigay lahat sa film,“ she added.

For personal health reasons, Marquez’s only concern at the moment is promoting “Nelia” in public venues. She is okay with online conferences and even participation in a planned fluvial parade of MMFF entries at Pasig River where social distancing will be enforced -- but not in the usual face-to-face encounter of showbiz conferences and events. “

Kahit nagluluwag na, mahirap pa rin kasing maging kampante!,” she said.

Other films in the MMFF 2021 selection include the comedy “Big Night” by Jun Robles Lana starring Christian Bables and John Arcilla; the romcom “Huling Ulan sa Tag-araw” directed by Louie Ignacio with Rita Daniela and Ken Chan; another romcom “Love at First Stream” by Cathy Garcia-Molina starring Kaori Oinuma, Jeremiah Lisbo, Daniela Stranner, and Anthony Jennings; and the horror comedy “The Exorsis” by Fifth Solomon with siblings Toni and Alex Gonzaga.