YA novel’s film adaptation earns buzz amid alleged Liza Soberano casting

April 26, 2023 - 2:49 PM
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Patron Saints of Nothing_Liza Soberano
Book cover of "Patron Saints of Nothing" as seen in the Facebook page of Randy Ribay; Liza Soberano in New York in this photo taken by @ofbecomingus and posted on her Instagram on April 21, 2023 (randyribaywrites/Facebook; lizasoberano/Instagram)

Readers of an award-winning young adult book reacted following reports that Liza Soberano will allegedly appear in its film adaptation with Filipino-American actor Brandon Perea.

Articles about the actress’ name appearing on a page of Internet Movie Database (IMDb) made the rounds online, where she was listed among the cast members of “Patron Saints of Nothing,” categorized as a drama film.

The production status is still “in development” but it has already listed some information about the supposed adaptation.

According to the page, the film is directed by award-winning Filipino-American writer-director Diane Paragas, who is also credited as its producer.

She is best known for writing, directing, and producing the 2019 musical drama “Yellow Rose,” which includes Lea Salonga and famous “Mula Sa Puso” villainess Princess Punzalan among the cast.

IMDb also said that “Patron Saints of Nothing” will see Jerell Rosales as a film writer. Its book author, Randy Ribay, is also under the credits.

Liza, meanwhile, is listed as portraying the character of Mia.

She is joined by Brandon who is credited as Jay; and another Fil-Am actor, Jon Jon Briones, who is portraying Tito Maning.

ALSO READ: Why Jordan Peele rewrote ‘Nope’ script for Fil-Am Puerto Rican Brandon Perea

IMDb page_Liza Soberano
(Screengrab by Interaksyon from IMDb website)

The alleged movie has the following overview:

Based on the award-winning novel by Randy Ribay, a coming-of-age story about grief, guilt, and the risk a Filipino-American teenager takes to uncover the truth about his cousin’s murder. 

IMDb page_Patron Saints of Nothing
(Screengrab by Interaksyon from IMDb website)

If confirmed, it will be Liza’s second movie in the United States following her appearance in the yet-to-be-released horror-comedy “Lisa Frankenstein,” where she starred with Kathryn Newton and Cole Sprouse.

READ: IG mutuals: These Hollywood stars are Liza Soberano’s new Instagram followers

The American-born Pinay actress is in the US to pursue her longtime dream of having a career in Hollywood, the world’s biggest film industry.

Meanwhile, reports of her supposed appearance in the YA novel’s film adaptation perked up some Filipinos, especially those who have read or have knowledge of the book.

“WAIT, OMG, IT’S GETTING AN ADAPTATION,” a Twitter user exclaimed.

“WAIT, WHAT, OMG, IT’S GETTING AN ADAPTATION??!?!? AAAAAA OMG, IT’S ONE OF MY FAVES!” another Pinoy exclaimed.

“How the hell did I miss the news that Patron Saints of Nothing is coming to the big screen?” wrote a different Twitter user with a face-with-steam-from-nose emoji.

“Ooohhh, [I] didn’t know they’re planning to adapt it into a film. Hopefully, ipalabas dito sa [P]inas para mas malakas impact!” another Filipino commented.

The book

“Patron Saints of Nothing” tells the coming-of-age story of Jay Reguero, a senior high schooler in America who discovers that his Filipino cousin Jun gets murdered under President Rodrigo Duterte’s bloody “War on Drugs” campaign.

Duterte’s flagship campaign has been heavily criticized for reportedly perpetrating extrajudicial killings of suspected illegal drug users who Human Rights Watch said were mostly of the urban poor.

In the book, Jay returns to his homeland to uncover the truth about the events leading to his cousin’s death.

The high schooler is forced to reckon with the many sides of Jun before he can face the whole truth and the part he played in it.

Other characters are Mia, a journalism student who is the sister of Grace’s girlfriend Jessa.

Grace is a cousin of Jay and the daughter of Tito Maning, Jay’s uncle who is also a police chief.

The book is a finalist in the 2019 National Book Awards for Young People’s Literature.

The judges describe it as an “intense [and] poignant story” that “explores questions of identity, homeland, family, and the complexity of truth.”

“Ribay splits your heart in shock and grief, but he also heals it, and we are enriched for having traveled with him on the journey,” the judges of the book awards said.

Publisher Penguin Random House also partly describes the book as a “powerful coming-of-age story.”