Twenty-four-year-old Annicka Dolonius, who stars in Marie Jamora’s Cinemalaya entry, Ang Nawawala, seems like she’s a lot of fun. She’s the pretty girl—the cool, eccentric type—you wish you’d meet at gigs, concerts or maybe, at an art thing.
In fact, that is how her character, Enid, meets the film’s leading man, Gibson. The two central figures—the film’s “love team” if you may—cross paths “at an art thing,” as Annicka tells us during one afternoon when FHM met up with the young actress for a little interview.
About her role, Annicka had this to say: “I play Enid del Mundo. She’s…THE girl. Gibson, the lead character, meets her at an art thing. He finds something interesting about her. She finds something interesting about him. Sparks fly.”
Played by Bembol Roco's son Dominic, Gibson is literally the silent type. He stops speaking after a tragedy befalls him and his family as a kid. Enid enters the picture as Gibson’s first real chance at a romantic relationship—an unexpected one, but one that may help him find his voice back in this coming-of-age family drama.
Now let’s turn our focus back to Annicka. If she seems familiar, that's because she is. Ang Nawawala isn't her first foray into acting. If this continues, we see her becoming one of them indie stars with massive cult following. If she doesn't seem familiar, well, what are you waiting for? Here are six things about the one young actress we all have to watch for:
1) She was dragged into this film with a lot of kicking and screaming involved.
”Yeah, they had to drag me in. It was awful, I was kicking and screaming. Haha.”
She was kidding. But while she looks like she wouldn’t hesitate to kick you if need be, we’re happy to tell you that the process of her getting involved in the film was not violent at all:
”Somebody messaged me: ‘Hey, we’re doing a film, and we have a casting. Somebody recommended you to us.’ And I was like, ‘Oh, really? Alright. Sweet. I’ll do that.’ Haha. I went in, and I read for them.”
The film’s director, Marie Jamora, adds, “When you see the right person, you really kind of know. When Annicka went in, and she read the lines, she just got it right. Very early on, when Cinemalaya asked me who I wanted to cast for the girl, I said, ‘I don’t know. I just want to discover somebody and hope she looks like a young Winona Ryder.’ Haha. Ask and you shall receive.”
2) She had acted in another Cinemalaya film before.
Annicka played Wena in the 2007 Aureus Solito-hit Pisay, which is film about Philippine Science high-schoolers in the 1980s.
”That was when I was 19, so that was around 5, 6 years ago. It was different. But I haven’t seen it yet. I missed the premiere.”
She says she can’t remember why she missed the premiere. Up to this day, she hasn’t seen the film. This time around, she promised to be at Ang Nawawala’s premiere.
3) She admits that she had to get used to acting in film once more.
”I definitely needed to get used to being on set again. Doing take after take after take, putting on costumes, the makeup, and the hours—it took a while to get used to that. Because I remember what it was like from Pisay, but these things you kind of forget. So it was nice to come back to that, to be able to work in film again.”
It helped that she had faith in her director:
”At no point did I feel like, ‘Okay, Marie obviously has no idea what she’s doing.’ Everyday we’d go into the shoot, and you would see Marie there marching around, at least seeming to know what she was doing. If you didn’t know what you were doing, you simply look at Marie, and she’s like, ‘you got this.’ I felt very secure under Marie’s direction.”
4) Here’s Annicka’s tip when exchanging dialogues with a character who doesn’t speak:
”Just because he doesn’t speak, it doesn’t mean that he’s not there. You just gotta feel him.”
It was a challenge, admits Annicka: “You want him to say something, but then he lends you the phone because that’s how he communicates; you have to read it. But then after a while, you sort of get used to it. Then you realize that he does things, he manages to say things with his eyes, or his body, or whatever.
5) Annicka reveals that her on-screen partner is sort of like that in real life too.
”One of the very first things he (Dominic Roco) told me was “Hey, don’t mind me if I don’t talk that much because I’m just, you know, I’m not a dupe or anything, I just don’t like to talk.”
On the other hand, Annicka sees Enid as a younger version of herself: “there’s a lot of me in Enid, and there’s a lot of Enid in me. Still, I think we’re different characters. I always saw Enid as kind of a younger version of me. It’s like I remember what it was like to be somebody like her, but I can’t say we’re the same person now. Playing the character, it felt like my older self was teaching my younger self something. It was weird, and cool at the same time.”
6) She might or might not pose for FHM
Being Sanya Smith’s half-sister, we asked her if she’d do FHM.
”I don’t know how to pose in a bikini. Haha. I suck at that kind of thing,” she answered.
Well, at least we asked!
So for the meantime, we’ll have to check her out in Ang Nawawala, and hopefully, more films in the future.
Ang Nawawala stars Dawn Zulueta, Boboy Garovillo, Felix Roco, Alchris Galura, Mercedes Cabral, Kelvin Yu, Jenny Jamora, Marc Abaya, and Sabrina Man. Catch Ang Nawawala from July 20 to 29 at CCP, Greenbelt 3, and Trinoma. Visit www.angnawawala.com for more details.