Luke Selby marvels at no-script directing style of Brillante Mendoza

First time actor Luke Selby from England was amazed at how multi-awarded Filipino director Brillante Mendoza helmed the first ever film he is appearing at, “Alapaap.”

“I did a little background research after I was cast. Suddenly, I am working with one of the top talents in the Philippines. I’m scared. What if I screw up? What if I become a complete disaster? What if he hates me?” he said during a live conference yesterday, Aug. 3.

Selby did a workshop with Mendoza, watched the director’s earlier works and discovered his directing style while in a lock-in shooting. He noted how Mendoza will give some instructions on how the scenes need to come out, “and the rest of it, you do the method acting.”

“He doesn’t use script and you have to keep doing the scenes until he says cut. For example, there’s a bar scene. During that scene, you’re dancing, you’re having fun, you do drugs. He’s not gonna say cut so you have to keep going until you hear the cut,” Selby recalled.

“There’s no clear definition of you do drugs and you kiss and you’re expecting a cut. You do drugs and you kiss and there’s no cut so you have to continue kissing, continue dancing. Until that point, you keep going,” he added.

Selby plays Adolf, a reserved guy who meets his cousins for the first time. He noted that there are similarities and differences between him and his character. Both, he said, are well travelled.

“I travel a lot and my character gets to know a lot of culture from countries he visits. It’s very much like me. There’s also differences. The character I play is bisexual. I am straight. Another big difference is that my character is half-Filipino. I am British,” he explained.

Image: courtesy of Luke Selby

Given the requirements of the project, kissing another guy is also no problem for Selby who studied theater for a year back in England.

“I was at a university were most of my friends are gay. When you got drunk, you go kissing a guy once or twice. I am perfectly comfortable with that. At the end of the day I am still straight. I don’t see an issue about kissing a guy,” he said.

“Alapaap” is Mendoza’s latest project under Vivamax. His most recent film, “Gensan Punch” (2021) won the Kim Jiseok Award at the 26th Busan International Film Festival. JB

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