Coleen Garcia challenged in first suspense thriller 'Kaluskos'

Leah C. Salterio

Posted at Dec 03 2022 08:26 AM

Working on her first suspense-thriller was a real challenge for actress Coleen Garcia. With director Roman Perez, Jr. at the helm, “Kaluskos” is Garcia’s only second film this 2022.

“Ang alam natin sa horror, mga aswang, white lady, mga bad spirits,” Garcia told ABS-CBN News. “I don’t know if you will outrightly count ‘Kaluskos’ as a horror flick. But this is the closest to horror film that I’ve done.”

After appearing in “Adarna Gang” at the start of 2022, Garcia makes her follow up film only now with “Kaluskos.” Yet, she insisted she does not purposely limit her film projects even if she has her baby constantly in tow.

“Mahirap for every production na bitbit ko ang anak ko every time I’d shoot,” she explained. “It’s hard to consider that. But the baby is still non-negotiable. I never spent one single night away from Amari.

“I never spent a lot of time away from him. That’s why I’m really thankful to Viva Films and Direk Roman, because they were all so understanding about that. I don’t think going back to acting in front of the camera will really be easy if you’re a mom.

“Especially if you’re doing a teleserye. I am always with Amari. But I don’t think this will last forever because Amari will not be a baby forever. I just prioritize him now.”

Wrapping up a supernatural thriller like “Kaluskos” is a real accomplishment for Garcia. “It was great,” she admitted. “I love the material and I really love the script. I’m excited to get on with this project.

“This supernatural thriller was the genre I was really waiting for. Masaya talaga. It was a role I could really play with. 

“In ‘Adarna Gang,’ I really loved being part of the project and I was proud to be in it and worked with the actors I got to work with. In ‘Kaluskos,’ I felt I had more room to really explore my character and worked on really developing my character. Those are the kind of roles I really looked forward to doing.”

DOMESTIC THRILLER

Perez did not really limit Garcia in her role in "Kaluskos." “The job of a director is to tell you what he wants to see in every scene,” she said. “It’s a good thing how I understood the script.

“When I was reading my part, I believe the script can be open to interpretations. It was the same thing that Direk Roman wanted to happen. It was very important to know the vision of your director.

“I didn’t think that he limited me in any way. I should say he guided me. Nasunod din naman ang vision that he wanted to happen.”

Perez and the co-writer of “Kaluskos,” Enrique Villasis, defined the film project as a “domestic thriller.”

“I guess Coleen was right,” Perez said. “Horror has supernatural elements. But the film is a psychological thriller. More on domestic drama, rather than horror.”

“Kaluskos” is about a mother’s descent into madness. “The journey of my character here in this film, she has been through a lot,” Garcia said. “It brought out the worse in her and it starts off with a custody battle with her husband for her daughter.

“She does not get to be with her daughter often because she’s very career-oriented. The story starts out between the parents fighting over the custody of their daughter. While the child is with her, she tries to spend more time with her.

“She realized she has been missing on so many things as a mom. But that is not necessarily her fault since she’s too career oriented. That’s the conflict also as a mom. It talks about that issue, although it’s so hard to explain it just in one theme.

“There are so many things happening in the movie. The character I’m playing has many representations.”

CINEMALAYA

Back in 2018, Perez pitched “Kaluskos” to Viva Films. “I was told at that time, Boss Vic [del Rosario] and Boss Veronique have not done a horror project. They liked the concept, but we were told to stand by.”

However, “Kaluskos” was passed on from one company to another.

“I was still not yet with Viva at that time, but the company holds the right to the script of ‘Kaluskos’,” Perez recalled. “The film entered Cinemalaya. We gave the concept and the script so it can join festivals abroad.

“Viva pledged to support the project after the festivals. The casting of ‘Kaluskos’ was completed. Favorite siya ni Boss Vincent [del Rosario]. I completed a concept that was a double ganger and I readily gave the concept to Viva.

“At that time, Viva had succeeding horror films that didn’t quite succeed. Before Cinemalaya, we were already dealing with other film companies. When the film made it to Cinemalaya, we became confident to produce ‘Kaluskos’.”

STAYING IN FRANCE

Meanwhile, three months of staying in France with her husband Billy Crawford and two-year-old son Amari, has given Garcia the time to really be closer to her son. She refused to label her three-month stay abroad as a long vacation.

“Out of the three months we’ve been here, one day lang kami sa hotel,” Garcia said. “The rest of the time apartment. Of course, iba siya sa buhay ‘Pinas na may kasambahay.

“May mga umaalalay sa atin. Dito, we had to do everything ourselves. Ibang experience talaga siya for us. We will be here until early December. We will spend Christmas in Manila, so we will be back soon.”

Garcia was with hubby Crawford, who competed and won in the latest season of “Danse avec les Stars,” the French version of the popular American reality dance competition, “Dancing with the Stars.” Crawford was paired with Fauve Hautot in the 12th edition of the show.

“Kaluskos” is now showing in cinemas nationwide.

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