By Ruben V. Nepales
Not many beloved bestselling novels get adapted to the big screen and satisfy their readers. Rarer still is that the author himself writes the film adaptation and succeeds. Gillian Flynn manages that feat with her film version of her tour de force thriller, “Gone Girl.” That it’s her first crack at screenwriting makes her achievement even more stunning.
I am into comic books. Among my favorites are “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” “Detective Conan,” “Doraemon” and “The Best of Archie.” Ever since I was a kid, I’ve loved watching cartoon shows on TV. Now, I collect different comic books—even Japanese manga. I like reading about the powers of the characters in “Avatar.” I prefer books that have visuals. When I am not reading comic books, I usually watch animated shows on Cartoon Network. It’s my stress-buster. Bayani San Diego Jr.
I read the novel “Diary ng Panget” by Have You Seen This Girl, before we started shooting the movie. I think it became a hit because of the story. It speaks with the voice of the youth.
My “Esoterika: Maynila” director Elwood Perez gave me the book “Star: How Warren Beatty Seduced America” by Peter Biskind. He said I could pick up a lot of tips from the life of Warren Beatty—how he handled rumors, how he succeeded in Hollywood, the secret of his longevity in the movie industry.
I used to be insecure as a filmmaker. I had lots of doubts and fears until I read “Clint: A Retrospective” by Richard Schickel. This book on (Oscar-winning filmmaker Clint Eastwood) taught me not to over-think things. That’s what he told his son (actor Scott Eastwood). You should be confident enough to stand by your artistic choices. I used to shoot one scene over and over. But Clint says the first take is usually the best. The book analyzes his ascent and depth as an actor-director. I admire him because, as a septuagenarian, he was able to become better than his younger self. Bayani San Diego Jr.