Timeless as enchantress, Carmina Villarroel is an ageless name in the world of acting. Decades of passion and dedication sustained her sparkle – time passes and she’s still here, strong and prevailing.
Carmina’s longevity in show business mirrors her love for her craft. She has been giving us a feast of talent through her impeccable performances as an actress in TV and movie setting. In fact, her enthusiasm is contagious, making her environment a garden of enjoyment and excitement. Before this year ends, she is set to make her biggest big screen comeback – and we are confident this will be big.
Carmina’s SUNOD in MMFF 2019
On this year-end holiday, Carmina is the lead star of Sunod, a Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) 2019 official entry. In fact, this is the only horror genre in the list, making it a real stand out.
Even though Sunod is tagged as a horror film, it is also about a heartfelt mother-daughter story. In the film, Carmina is a loving mother who works as a call center agent to pay the hospital bills of her child. While she is desperately seeking ways to prolong her daughter’s life, she will encounter unexpected horror that will definitely change her life and the people around her.
It was three decades ago when Carmina starred in a MMFF entry, thus making this film extra memorable for the seasoned actress.
SUNOD As Unusual Horror Filipino Film
So, for a long time, what makes Carmina decides to grab and take the role? “Iba siya sa typical local horror film because our movie is so quiet,” she described the movie with confidence.
The movie trailer gives its viewers both chill and calming vibe. Yes, ‘chill and calm’, opposite to the typical Philippine horror film. Tikbalang, manananggal, kapre or whatsoever, the movie does not have it – but it has the story that will nerve-wrack the audience. It does not warn the audience what to expect, but be prepare for a dynamic mood ride that will shiver amid the coldness of December.
For a timeless actress like Carmina who had already played countless roles, the movie is indeed exquisite in its own way. Whereas, the veteran actress felt a spark that push her to take the role. “When they offer this to me, when I read the script, I said, ‘This is it. Ito na. Gusto ko na ‘tong gawin.’”
The Nostalgic Return On Big Screen
Unlike any other actor who had a long hiatus from the big screen, Carmina has no specific preparation for her comeback, she only made sure to embrace her character – diligently.
“I just read the script, I talk to my director and then from there, parang nagmo-morph ako when I get to the scene, when I get to the location, parang naa-absorb ko na lang ‘yong character na kung sino man ako – I’m not like other actors na mayroong preparations, may kanya kanya kami kung paano mag prepare. So, ako, chill lang!” she claims.
The actress doesn’t even mind asking a bunch of questions to her co-actors and directors as long as it is for the betterment of the production. Apart from acting, she believes that collaboration with the people behind the camera helps the working relationship at ease and productive.
Upon knowing that her comeback film was chosen as one of the MMFF entries, the actress thought that this would be her nostalgic return. After starring in Shake, Rattle & Run 2, the multi-talented actress will once again bring chill and creeps to festival critics and viewers.
Carmina As An Actress
As an actress who has been in the industry for so long, Carmina sees herself as someone who is dedicated and passionate about her craft. She also wants to believe throughout these years on her career where she has already established her name, she can already be labeled as one of the country’s versatile actresses. With her decades of experience and contribution to Philippine Cinema, we can really say that she is one of the country’s most versatile actresses – ONLY FACTS.
“I think because I can do drama, I can do horror and I can do comedy obviously dahil mahilig ako magpatawa and I get to host,” she affirms.
Carmina revealed that she never had a specific dream role, she just wants to do something that sparks her heart. But if there’s one role she would never accept over anything else, it would be a exorcism-themed film.
“In this movie we have possessions but hindi ako ‘yung napo-possess so okay naman ako doon. If that’s the theme of the story, it’s fine with me. Unang una, matatakutin ako at palapitin ako so I don’t want to invite,” she explains.
Being in this tough business for a long time means working with a lot of different people behind and in front of the camera. Carmina believes that a good actress is someone who has a good sense of professionalism, discipline, and treats her co-workers with respect regardless of position. On the other hand, her pet peeve is someone who lacks discipline especially those who are always late – and I could’t agree more.
Words of Wisdom
Carmina’s longevity in the industry is the only thing that she is really proud of. Her ‘sustaining power’ is what makes her still alive and kicking in the industry despite the bloom of the new generation of actors. “For you to be able to sustain that long in this business is something else, I guess because it’s really hard work. I may not have a title, I may not be a superstar star for all seasons, or kung ano mang title ‘yan, that’s fine with me as long as I am still here.”
For someone who’s truly passionate like Carmina, keeping one’s sparkle is the most challenging role. However, she believes that discipline, hard work, professionalism mirror her endurance in this world of fame and unending competition.
“Sana ‘yong mga younger stars, ‘yong bagong artista ngayon, sana ‘yon yong maano ko sa kanila na just to be professional and respectful to one another, not only to your co-actors but everyone on the set,” she urges new and aspiring actors.
Carmina shares a piece of advice to all new generation actors: to pursue their dreams no matter what their dreams are. Above all, she wants to emphasize the value of gratitude despite fame and successes.
“Be grateful sa lahat ng mga tumulong sa inyo in the past up to the present. Always be thankful to your fans. Put yourself in their position.”
As time flies so fast, everything we’ve seen on television for so long seems to be merely a product of yesterday’s hard work. Yet, Carmina’s passion and skills in acting still remain ‘out of the ordinary’ that no one could seem to surpass.
Produced and Written by Nicko Talavera, Sheila Ordinario, and Fern Estrebello
Photographer | Dom Cruz
Assisted by Miguel Famularcano
Film by Vincent Sy
Assisted by Candie Ramos
Styling | Myrrh Lao To, Carvey Samonte of #teammesmyrrhized
Makeup Artist | Rick Calderon
Hairstylist | Jhoan Soria & Raffy Prieto Francisco
Special Thanks To Joshua Roque, TEN17P, and Globe Studios
Shot in Cornerstone Studios