It was a red carpet affair. Not only the cast but also the guests had to tread the 50-meter stretch which was protected by railings on both sides. For added security, there were security guards of the mall monitoring the railings.
I was wondering why the setup was like that. Bakit ang higpit ng security? Bakit ang daming fans crowding by the railing? Parang may field trip dahil mukhang mga estudyante ang karamihan.
There were 2 emcees, a male and a female, atop the makeshift stage near the theater lobby. I couldn’t comprehend what the emcees were saying because of the crowd which was intermittently roaring, maybe for no reason at all.
It was really surprising to see and hear the reaction of the young crowd. “Talo ang cheering squad,” said a guard who was holding the railing to prevent it from caving in. “Pag nabanggit po kasi ang pangalan ng artista, nagwawala na sila,” the guard said.
From afar, I saw a group of young men and women treading the red carpet from the entrance. The cheering got louder and louder until the group, presumably the cast, reached the stage.
There was a mild pandemonium. The cast on the stage, with the emcess and countless photographers jockeying for vantage position, while the fans (outside the railings) were dominant with their screams and shouts.
A man in the lobby remarked, “Kaya mong hakutin ang mga tao kung babayaran mo pero hindi mo kayang pasigawin nang ganyan.” Actually hindi sigaw kundi tili na super lakas at talagang nakakabingi. If that was the case then where did the crowd come from?
And to think that the cast on the stage were the supporting actors and actresses, all young like the youthful crowd. To make heads or tails on what’s happening, I had to do a quick research.
But before that, The emcees on the stage asked the supporting cast to introduce themselves – MJ Cayabyab, Tito Ramos, AJ Muhlach, Janna Roque were some of the names I was able to list down.
Author of the book version Denny, Direk Andoy Ranay, James Reid holding the mic, Nadine Lustre, Andre Paras, Yassi Pressman and the female emcee
Add to that my research… Diary Ng Panget was lifted from a best-selling book authored by Denny (no family name). The movie stars Nadine Lustre with James Reid, Andre Paras and Yassi Pressman.
Who are they, really? Andre is the son of Benjie Paras, the former PBA star player and now an actor and comedian. James? Nadine? Yassi? All new names to me. And the supporting cast were all aliens to me.
Hmmm, wala ngang sikat pero bakit ganyan ang crowd? So I guess I had to make another quick research but this time an in-depth one for details. While doing that, the main cast arrived and pandemonium broke loose. Wala nang marinig kundi ang tilian.
In case you are wondering like me, well, Diary Ng Panget is produced by Viva Films, the outfit noted for its very fine marketing. Viva manages artists who are legendary in fame like Sarah Geronimo and Anne Curtis. Viva handled the career of Sharon Cuneta.
The marketing style of Viva is unique. They don’t scrimp and art comes ahead of the budget. Matindi raw ang promotion ng Viva sa kanilang projects, be it a movie, concert or an upcoming artist. They spend time, money and lots of effort.
The movie capitalized on the book which sold more than 140,000 copies. May fan base na ang Diary Ng Panget, the book version, and it was successfully translated into the fan base of the movie. What a skillful marketing technique.
Youtube was dotted with video clips (of the movie) that titillated the fans no end. And the trending contaminated Facebook and Twitter. Talagang kumalat na sa internet dahil sa “sharing” ng mga fans na users ng Facebook at Twitter.
“Huwag kang maarte. Hindi ka naman maganda.” A catchy dialogue that graced the posts of Facebook and Twitter users. It was actually the dialogue of James Reid, who played Cross, the rich and handsome spoiled brat trying to comfort the ugly Eya.
The author with Benjie Paras, the PBA player, actor, comediana and father to Andre
When the premiere screening started, the lights had to be turned on again because people were still groping for position. The theater was jampacked. Young fans were seated on the aisles and there was nary an empty space inside the theater.
It was a marketing coup of sorts for Viva. “Dito lang ako nakakita ng premiere na nagbebenta ng ticket.” If the movie’s success could be gauged in a premiere, Diary Ng Panget would definitely be a blockbuster.
The story was cute. Not exactly a fairy tale of the poor and the rich, the handsome and the ugly. Naturally, crush ni Ugly si Handsome pero dahil rude si Handsome kaya turned off si Ugly. And due to Ugly’s sincere demeanor kaya marami rin siyang friends.
But unlike the traditional fairly tale, The ugly did not become beautiful. She remained ugly even after his prince charming fell in love with her. And this scene was well-liked by the adoring fans.
Superb direction by Andoy Ranay from the screenplay by Mel del Rosario, Diary Ng Panget is a must for the young generation.
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