Ruby Ruiz cast in Australian-Filipino co-produced film ‘First Light’

Ruby Ruiz headlines Australian-Filipino co-produced film ‘First Light’

/ 08:26 PM April 25, 2024

Ruby Ruiz headlines Australian-Filipino co-produced film ‘First Light’. Image: Instagram/@majella.otherworldly

Ruby Ruiz. Image: Instagram/@majella.otherworldly

Fresh off her appearance in “Expats,” Ruby Ruiz has been cast as the lead of the Australian-Filipino-produced film “First Light,” which tells the story of an elderly nun forced to confront the “muddled ethics” of a religious institution after the death of a construction worker.

Ruiz’s casting was confirmed in an exclusive report by the U.S.-based entertainment platform Variety on Thursday, April 25, where she will be joined by Maricel Soriano, Rez Cortez, Soliman Cruz, and Kidlat Tahimik.


“First Light” will also mark the directorial debut of James J. Robinson who “brings together artists from Australia and the Philippines” in hopes of telling stories through the lens of a “mixed-race artist.”


“Developing ‘First Light’ over the past two years has been an incredibly profound journey into the heart of pre-colonial Filipino philosophy,” Robinson was quoted as saying. “[Witnessing] this cultural exchange in real-time, will be one of the most enlightening experiences of my life, and reflects a deeper journey within myself to define my identity and ancestry as a mixed-race artist.”

The film will be supported by Screen Australia, the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP), Clou Media Productions, the Melbourne International Film Festival Premiere Fund, and VicScreen, per report.

Melbourne-based Gabrielle Pearson through her production company Majella Productions will serve as the producer of the film, along with Clou Media Productions’ Christelle Dychangco and Jane Pe Aguirre.

On the other hand, GoodThing Productions’ Nick Batzias and Virginia Whitwell were tapped to be the executive producers.

Pearson also took to her Instagram account to announce Ruiz’s casting and the film being brought to life.

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“First Light” is said to take place in the “remote mountains of the Philippines,” and will focus on “the intersection of duty, faith, and institutional power.”

Details on the plot, cast, and premiere date are yet to be announced, as of this writing.

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With more than 50 movies and 20 TV shows under her belt in her two-decade career in Philippine entertainment, the 63-year-old Ruiz made her first global acting debut in the Nicole Kidman-starrer Hollywood series “Expats.” In the series, Ruiz played Essie, a middle-aged live-in nanny of Margaret (Kidman), in what she said was a “role of a lifetime.”

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