Love is arguably one of the most complex human emotions. It is filled with mysteries and demands a profound understanding from those who experience its high and low points.
Zanjoe Marudo is paired with Kylie Verzosa for the first time to explore the numerous facets of falling in love and the challenges that come with it in the new Vivamax Original movie Ikaw Lang Ang Mahal.
In the film, Zanjoe plays the role of a filmmaker (Andrei) who went to Sagada in hopes of wooing three national artists to be the subject of his documentary. While there, he immerses himself in the mountainous region, meets locals, and becomes intimate with some of them. Eventually, he meets Lira (Kylie), a best-selling author and the niece of one of the national artists he’s trying to contact.
As the two become close, Andrei slowly falls for Lira and shifts his attention to falling in love instead of achieving his goals for his documentary. Together, they explore the beauty of art, the countryside, and love.
The film marks the first team-up between Zanjoe and Kylie, who have undeniable on-screen chemistry. However, their connection wasn’t always there from the beginning.
“It took a few days bago mag-open up. Pero siguro sa mga second or third day, doon medyo at ease na ako, medyo kumportable na ako, Kylie said during a media junket for Ikaw Lang Ang Mahal.
Kylie recalled that throughout their scenes, whether intimate or drama-filled, Zanjoe protected and guided her while remaining professional to meet their shared goal of giving it their all for the movie.
Renowned director Richard Somes is responsible for creating the spark between Zanjoe and Kylie.
“Viva gave me this opportunity to work with a love story, which I really dreamed of doing, and they gave me one of the brilliant actors here in the Philippines now with Zanjoe and Kylie. It’s an experience working with them, most especially when you’re sharing your thoughts and your vision with the film itself,” Somes said.
Somes is known for movies in the horror and action genres. Ikaw Lang Ang Mahal will be his first romantic movie to direct, but he’s more excited about the project because he sees it as an ode to his career as a filmmaker.
Although it’s Somes’ first time working on a romantic film, he effectively showed a softer side to him that translated well in the scenes where he leveraged the picturesque scenery of Sagada to add to the intensity in the scenes between Zanjoe and Kylie.
The director is also keen on introducing new themes about love, such as how it’s uncompromising and beyond our moral beliefs on what ideal love is because people can’t control when, where, and with whom it will strike.
Joining Zanjoe and Kylie are Cara Gonzales, Joel Torre, Lara Morena, and Ronnie Lazaro among others.
Ikaw Lang Ang Mahal premieres on May 20 exclusively on Vivamax.