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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

May 23, 2012

Lovi Poe Replaces Jennylyn Mercado As Lead Actress In Regal's New Horror Film 'Guni-Guni'

LOVI POE replaces Jennylyn Mercado as the lead actress in Regal’s new horror flick, “Guni-Guni”. Roselle Monteverde says Jen begged off as she’s also in Regal’s “Bride and Lover” with Paulo Avelino and she’s starting a new soap on GMA-7, “Hindi Ka Na Mag-iisa”, with Sid Lucero.

“We got Lovi kasi her ‘Aswang’, ‘My Neighbor’s Wife’ and ‘Temptation Island’ with us last year were hits,” says Roselle. “‘Guni-Guni’ is the break sa mainstream ni writer-director Tara Illenberger, who did the acclaimed Cinemalaya entry, ‘Brutus’.”

Lovi says she got so excited after Tara explained her “Guni-Guni” role to her. “It’s very psychologically challenging,” she says. “I’m Mylene, a medical student you’d think is very orderly at mabait, pero may deep dark secret pala. Babaguhin pati look ko rito.”

Empress Schuck plays her best friend Joanna, who has a third eye and can see dead people. Her leading man is newcomer Benjamin Alves as Paulo, her BF who cheated on her but now wants to reconcile with her.

The story is set in a haunted boarding house and the other cast members are Gina Alajar as an alcoholic woman waiting for her dead son who committed suicide, Jaime Fabregas as the gardener who is the cause of the hauntings, Lui Manansala and James Blanco as Jaime’s balikbayan wife and son, Ria Garcia as a pregnant boarder, Neil Ryan Sese as a salesman with an autistic son played by Gerald Pesigan, Julia Clarete as Gerald’s yaya and Irma Adlawan as Lovi’s rich mom. The boarders will die one by one.

“Excited din ako to work with Direk Tara for the first time,” says Lovi. “She has fresh ideas and I have a feeling magiging maganda ang ‘Guni-Guni’.”

What can she say about Jake Cuenca insinuating in an interview that they have a relationship when he told the press: “Ibalato nyo na lang yun sa’kin.”

“There’s nothing romantic going on between us,” she says. “Good friends lang talaga kami after we did ‘My Neighbor’s Wife’. We maintained our communication. He’s really a nice guy, very generous at nagpapadala pa ng food sa taping ko ng ‘Legacy’. Pero hindi ko yun nilalagyan ng ibang meaning o malisya. Mabait lang talaga siya.”

She just finished shooting “They Womb” with Nora Aunor, directed by Brilliante Mendoza. “At first, intimidated ako dahil sa status niya. Pero ang bait-bait niyang kaeksena, so humble, never making me feel na malaking artista siya. Nagpa-picture nga ako agad with her as she made me feel pantay lang kami.”

What’s her role? “Hindi ko rin ma-explain kasi walang script. Sinasabi lang sa’kin sa set kung anong gagawin ko.”