Believe it or not, award-winning actress Judy Ann "Juday" Santos-Agoncillo has a fear of snowy weather.
Judy Ann opened up about her fear of snow during the media conference of her reunion project with actor Sam Milby entitled "The Diary of Mrs. Winters" held at Limbaga 77 Cafe Restaurant in Quezon City on Tuesday, Feb. 7.
But this time, Juday said that she is determined to end her trauma with snow or snowy weather when they shoot the horror movie in Canada in the coming weeks. She added that this will be the last time for now that she will shoot a film abroad.
"I'm turning 45 this year and this is the perfect time for me to face one of my fears. May matindi akong trauma sa snow. Siguro para sa iba napaka babaw. Sasabihin nila 'ano ba naman ang arte-arte! Sa snow natatakot.' Nasa Toronto kasi ako with my mom and ang feeling ko talaga wala na akong tenga. I was 14 years old. So after that, ayoko na maka-experience ng snow. But our children, gustong-gusto nila maka-experience ng snow. Gusto ko ma-surpass yung takot na yun para ma enjoy namin as family once na makakita uli kami ng snow," she said.
(I'm turning 45 this year and this is the perfect time for me to face one of my fears. I have a severe trauma in the snow. Maybe for others it's too shallow. They will say it's only snow. I'm in Toronto with my mom and I really feel like I don't have ears anymore. I was 14 years old. So after that, I don't want to experience snow anymore. But our children really want to experience snow. They want to. I want to overcome that fear so that we can enjoy it as a family once we see snow again.)
Judy Ann said that it was her husband who inspired her to conquer her fears.
"Si Ryan (Agoncillo), kapag may fear siya on something, tatalunin niya talaga. Takot siya sa deep water then nag diving siya. Takot siya sa mountain bike, then nag mountain biking siya. So na inspire ako roon. Puwede palang ganun na gawin mo siyang hobby by facing your fear and you get something out of it," she also said.
(Ryan (Agoncillo), when he has fear of something, he will really fight it. He was afraid of deep water so he went diving. He was afraid of mountain biking, so he went mountain biking. So I was inspired there. You can make it a hobby by facing your fear and you get something out of it.)
Judy Ann added: "With this perfect project, parang napaka-tanga ko naman na eto na ang dasal at sinagot na, hihindian ko pa ba? So para sa akin this is more than enough reason to enjoy this film even takot na takot ako sa snow. Ayoko talaga munang isipin kasi kapag naiisip ko siya, nilalamig ako." (I really don't want to think about it because when I think about snow, I get cold.)
Rahyan Carlos, director of the upcoming movie, admitted he wasn't aware Judy Ann was afraid of snow.
"Tungkol sa sagot ni Juday, hindi ko talaga alam 'yung fear niya sa snow. Nalaman ko na lang yung noong nagwo-workshop na kami. Kaya ang preparation nila? In-depth character study. Doon talaga sila nag-soak. Hindi kami aariba sa pelikula na hindi nila naiintindihan from cover to cover yung backstory ng character. So noong kinausap ko sila, sabi ko kailangan natin magworkshop dahil kailangan nilang maintindihan yung objectives ng character at kung paano ma-overcome yung fear," the esteemed director and scriptwriter said.
On conquering his fears, Sam said: "Gusto ko rin ma-conquer ang fears ko so noon, nag to-tour kami, nag-offer sila for us to go skydiving. So ang ginawa ko, since 18,000 feet yung pinaka-highest, na-overcome ko 'yun. Masaya naman. Mas takot ako sa ferris wheel pag nag-stop sa taas, ayoko. Pag hindi gumagalaw, ayoko. Pero if it's a rollercoaster, laging gumagalaw, okay ako. Kahit super taas, laging gumagalaw, walang problema. Other fears like crocodiles, sharks, scuba diving, natatakot ako roon."
(I also wanted to conquer my fears so then, we went on a tour, they offered for us to go skydiving. So what I did, since 18,000 feet is the highest, I overcame that. It's fun. I'm more afraid of the ferris wheel when it stops at a height, I don't like it. If it doesn't move, I don't want it. But if it's a rollercoaster, always moving, I'm okay. Even super tall, always moving, no problem. Other fears like crocodiles, sharks, scuba diving, I'm afraid of that.)
Rahyan said that he always requires his actors to undergo a series of workshops with him before they shoot a project.
"I will not do a film or any teleserye without having a workshop. Kailangan makilala ko yung artista ko," he said.
On workshop with Sam and Juday, Rayhan said: "Open sila makipag work sa akin. Ang unang tanong ko sa kanila is how do you want to work and how can I be of help? Bukas na bukas talaga sila na magpaturo sa akin. It's an honor and humbling experience to hear them na gusto nilang matuto."
(They are open to working with me. My first question to them is how do you want to work and how can I be of help? They are really open to teaching me. It’s an honor and humbling experience to hear that they want to learn.)
Keeping a diary
Juday, Sam, and Rahyan have all gone through a phase where they kept a diary or journal.
"Nag diary rin ako pero sinunog ko na. Pero bago ko sinunog, binasa ko muna uli at tawang-tawa talaga ako sa mga katarantadahang ginawa ko sa pag-ibig noong bata ako. Napaka-gullible ko pala talaga noon sa pag-ibig. Sorry hindi kasama sa usapan yun," Judy Ann recalled.
(I also kept a diary but I burned it. But before I burned it, I read it again and I really laughed at the stupid things I did in love when I was young. I was really gullible in love back then. Sorry, that's not included in the conversation.)
Rahyan, also an acting coach, said that he uses a diary as a tool for teaching.
"Yun ang tool ko sa pagtuturo ng acting. I always do emotional diary. Yung diary, that's my way on how I instruct actors to create to be organic. So pag nagawa mo yung emotional diary na yun, pinupunit din kasi baka nay makabasa. During high school and college days, I do journal. Kaso yung journal nawawala. So I do an emotional diary for being a director, for creativity purposes and to help actors," he said.
(That's my tool for teaching acting. I always do an emotional diary. That diary, that's my way on how I instruct actors to create to be organic. So when you make that emotional diary, it's also torn up because it might be read. During high school and college days, I do journal. So I do an emotional diary for being a director, for creativity purposes and to help actors.)
Sam admitted that he still pours out his emotions by writing down on his tablet.
“I went through the stage na may journal ako everyday. Nagsusulat ako but matagal ng hindi. Takot din ako magsulat sa book kasi baka may makakita ng sulat ko. But on my tablet, if I feel emotional, I write down yung nararamdaman ko. I put a lock passcode para walang makakita ng sinulat ko,” the Filipino-American actor said.
(I went through the stage with a journal everyday. I’ve been writing but haven’t for a long time. I’m also afraid to write in the book because someone might see my writing. But on my tablet, if I feel emotional, I write down what I feel. I put a lock passcode so no one can see what I wrote.)
Juday said that she's excited to work again with Sam. The last time they worked together was for the television series "Huwag Ka Lang Mawawala" in 2013.
"Noong nagkita kami, parang kahapon lang nangyari yung 'Huwag Ka Lang Mawawala.' It was very refreshing. It's so nice to see someone very familiar and someone you've worked with and finally gagawa uli kayo ng project na totally different from the past. Kaya exciting kasi alam ko mag-aalagaan kami ni Sam when it comes to acting kasi meron na kaming experience working together. Hindi ko puwedeng sabihin na meron kaming past kasi baka iba na naman ang dating nun sa ibang tao. We know our moods. Pero wala naman trip-an sa set. Mahirap yung may kainitan ka ng dugo sa set. Ayoko ng ganun. I'm so happy si Sam yung ex ko sa pelikula," she said.
(It was very refreshing. It's so nice to see someone very familiar and someone you've worked with and finally you'll be doing a project that's totally different from the past. So it's exciting because I know Sam and I will take care of each other when it comes to acting because we already have experience working together. I can't say that we have a past because it might be different for other people. We know our moods. But there's no tripping on the set. It's hard if you don't get along with someone on the set. I don't want that. I'm so happy Sam is my ex in the movie.)
Produced by AMP Studios Canada and HappyKarga Films, the film is set to be shot in Canada and in the Philippines.
Putting into spotlight a unique career, “The Diary of Mrs. Winters” is about a Filipina bio-forensic assistant cleaner in Canada named Charity played by Judy Ann, whose life is cursed after keeping the diary of an old lady who committed suicide. A series of unfortunate events happen to her, including the death of her loved ones, forcing her to fight for her true love, Victor, played by Sam.
Happy Karga Films (HKF) which was founded in 2021 is the brainchild of two creative minds, a premier acting coach-writer-director and a top-notch TV and film producer. Their dream was to use their passion and expertise in filmmaking to create relatable and relevant stories.
AMP Studios Canada (AMP Studios) is an artist training and production company that was founded in 2019 in Ontario, Canada. It provides education and training programs to aspiring artists in various aspects of the performing arts.