Here’s an interesting twist that happened after MMDA has chosen the 8 entries for MMFF 2012. It gave birth to the upcoming superhero series ‘Juan Dela Cruz‘ which was initially submitted for the 38th Metro Manila Film Festival. When it was submitted they already had Coco Martin in mind to play for the titular character. His leading lady however would have been Maja Salvador thus reuniting the CocoJam love team instead of a new pair-up with Erich Gonzales. The movie would have been directed by Richard Somes.

On August 2012, Cinemedia Films Production Incorporated and ABS-CBN Unit Head, Deo Endrinal pulled out ‘Juan’ and confirmed that it would be serialized into a television drama to be directed by Malu Sevilla. A drama that will explore Philippine mythology about Guardians and Aswangs.

Synopsis: Juan dela Cruz (Coco Martin) is the son of mortal, Amelia (Mylene Dizon) and aswang (Albert Martinez). Juan is next in the lineage of tagapagbantays but unknown to him he bears aswang blood. The aswangs must not know of this fact for they will force him to join their clan, therefore he is brought up to do good deeds and believe in God to forget half of his very being. But the metal cross that is left by his mother before her death is stolen, the cross has the ability to shift into different weapons: a whip, a spear, an arrow, and a sword to fight against evil. In his quest to find his missing cross, he meets and falls in love with Rosario (Erich Gonzales) an undercover aswang-hunter.

Endrinal, however said that they opted to launch Juan as a teleserye first and a movie later.

Juan Dela Cruz Trailer:


Based on the trailer Juan Dela Cruz would have been a nice addition to MMFF. It’s gonna be a game changer in the Metro Manila Film Festival. Just like Quantum Films’ The Strangers, it’s gonna give Filipino audiences new options and a relief from the tiresome comedy, heavy-drama, cheap-cgi filled fantasy comedy and cliched Filipino horror that dominates the festival every year.

I don’t know if it would fare with those films in the box office though but a Juan Dela Cruz movie is definitely better than a teleserye. To be honest with you, the plot of Juan Dela Cruz isn’t that exciting or original. It feels like a shallow ripoff of Paul Bettany’s Priest (probably preachier than that) and Snipes’ Blade (only an Aswang slaying half-Aswang) all rolled into one. At least if it were a movie the story is gonna end probably after at most 2 hours.

If the series would soar high in Philippine TV Ratings, then probably, they’ll push through with the movie.