For sure you're excited to hear President Rodrigo Duterte’s first State of the Nation Address, which according to Press Secretary Martin Andanar, will ignite patriotism in every Filipino, let's first get into the mind of director Brillante Mendoza, who shared his thoughts on directing Duterte’s SoNA.
In a live interview with the Presidential Communications Office, Direk Brillante said that they will be building up the overall mood of the SoNA, right from the moment Duterte enters the session hall. “Dun sa pagpasok ng president, sine-set up na [yung mood],” he explained, emphasizing that it's important for the people to connect with Duterte’s SoNA right away. “We don’t want so much fanfare; we will focus just on the president, and on the message of the president to the people,” he added.
A veteran in terms of directing indie films [related: Hot Stuff: Brillante Mendoza Makes It to Cannes for the Fourth Time!], he describes directing the SoNA, a first in Philippine history for a film director to helm the direction of a State of the Nation Address ceremony, as something spontaneous. Even if he has yet to see the script and the speech itself, Brillante thinks that it will be touching and will definitely make all Filipinos proud. “We don’t have any rehearsal, just like in my films… I want it to be spontaneous, and that’s what I like to capture with my president,” he enthused.
Directing Duterte’s SoNA is a big honor for Direk Brillante (who's doing it pro bono), having tackled various social issues and social ills in his previous films. “Napaka-timely sa advocacy niya at sa [mga] pelikula ko,” he said, adding that he is very happy to support Duterte.
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Banner photograph from ABS-CBN PR