It’s all systems go for the anticipated sequel of Jerrold Tarog’s historical biopic “Heneral Luna” with several cast members of the original film reprising their roles acting alongside notable additions.
As earlier announced, Paulo Avelino, who played Gregorio del Pilar in “Heneral Luna,” will again play the role in the new film officially titled “Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral.”
Gregorio del Pilar was one of the youngest generals of the Philippine revolutionary forces during the Philippine-American war. He is best known for his heroic last stand in the infamous Battle of Tirad Pass in Ilocos Sur.
As posted on the official Facebook pages of both “Heneral Luna” and “Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral,” returning cast members from “Luna” include Mon Confiado (Emilio Aguinaldo), Epy Quizon (Apolinario Mabini), Benjamin Alves (Manuel Quezon), Leo Martinez (Pedro Paterno), Lorenz Martinez (Tomas Mascardo), Nonie Buencamino (Felipe Buencamino), Alvin Anson (Jose Alejandrino), Ronnie Lazaro (Lt. Garcia), Art Acuña (Manuel Bernal), Miguel Faustmann (Arthur MacArthur, Jr.), E. A. Rocha (Elwell Otis), Perla Bautista (Trinidad Aguinaldo), Carlo Aquino (Vicente Enriquez) and Arron Villaflor (as fictional journalist Joven Hernando).
Jason Abalos is also in the cast. He will reprise Julian, Gregorio del Pilar’s older brother, his role in the short film spinoff “Angelito” that was shown last February as a special attraction to the recent theatrical run of JP Habac’s “I’m Drunk I Love You.”
The new cast members who will be joining Tarog’s historical cinematic universe for the first time are Christoper Aronson, RK Bagatsing, Roeder Camañag, Carlo Cruz, Jason Dewey, Bret Jackson, Guji Lorenzana, Jojit Lorenzo, Karl Medina, Che Ramos, Tomas Santos, Empress Schuck, Robert Seña, Stephanie Sol, Markki Stroem, Gio Gahol, Hans Eckstein, Yan Yuzon, Arpee Bautista and Gwen Zamora. Their roles are yet to be announced.
Unless he’s playing another role, Art Acuña’s Manuel Bernal will likely appear in flashback scenes as his character died by the end of “Luna.” Curiously, Alex Vincent Medina, who played Manuel’s brother Jose in “Luna” is not part of “Goyo” even though he also appeared in “Angelito.”
John Arcilla, who received kudos for his riveting portrayal of “Heneral Luna” in the original biopic, is also not in the cast of the new film, even though it was speculated that he would still be included in flashback scenes. Fans of “Luna” are still hoping for Arcilla to be part of “Goyo” even if only in an uncredited capacity.
Executive producers Eduardo Rocha and Fernando Ortigas are thrilled to share the latest production update: “After months of speculation, we are excited to finally share with everyone the amazing cast of ‘Goyo’. We know a lot of people have been eagerly anticipating this film and we are just as eager to begin a bigger and more exciting film that everyone would support and cherish.”
Tarog, who recently helmed the acclaimed psychological thriller “Bliss,” is happy to return to familiar territory and complete the second part of an ambitious trilogy that will be concluded with a biopic on Manuel Quezon.
“It’s been three years since we last shot ‘Heneral Luna’. It’s a bit nostalgic to see the returning original cast. At the same time, I’m also really looking forward to working with our brilliant new cast members as we start shooting ‘Goyo’ in a couple of weeks,” he noted.
Produced by TBA Studios and Artikulo Uno Productions, “Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral” is being directed by Tarog from a screenplay he co-wrote with award-winning screenwriter Rody Vera. The film will focus on the heroic struggle of the young General Gregorio del Pilar and the events that unfold soon after the bloody death of General Antonio Luna.
The 20-minute short film “Angelito” served as an introduction to “Goyo” and a bridge between both “Heneral Luna” and its upcoming sequel. “Angelito” is now exclusively available online via movie streaming site Cinetropa.com
“Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral” is expected to be released in 2018.