“Topakk is a movie about camaraderie. It’s definitely tackling something very important, it’s tackling PTSD. It has a very interesting story,” shares lead star and producer Arjo Atayde.
“This is a project of director Richard Somes. All credit goes to him, this has been his baby project,” he continues.
Describing his director Richard Somes, “sobrang intense at sobrang passionate. Kung hihiga siya sa putik, gagawin niya. Ie-explain niya, gagawin niya. Very, very passionate, fun, he knows what he wants. Meron talagang mata si direk for action.”
About his co-star Julia Montes, “Julia, what can I say? Ang galing, sobra. Professional. I’m sure they always say, ‘ibang Julia ‘to, kakaibang Julia ‘to.’ The way they wrote the character for her, her words, bago siya. This is really something interesting and she really brought her A-game. Ang galing niya. I worked with her in a teleserye, I always believed in her. Ang galing niya.”
Now that he’s a producer, being part of Nathan Studios, is there any dream project he wants to do?
“I just wanna keep working, parang ang dami kong gustong gawin. I take it day by day. Ang dami kong gustong gawing stories but obviously it take so much time to build a really good story, a really good material. Dream project? I guess my only dream for now is to work with more actors I haven’t worked with.”
He’s more known to serious and intese projects, how about light ones?
“May ‘Tol’ naman ako, eh. Na-enjoy ko ‘yun, masaya ‘yun. Sabi ko, ’pwede naman palang umuwing nakangiti. Kasi laging pagkatapos ng take or whatever ng intense na serye, zzzz, tulog ka lang talaga agad. My only request kasi, I just don’t want to repeat as much as possible ‘yung role. If ever man magkapareha, dapat different ‘yung plot, ng story and character development.”
So, how does Arjo Atayde reinvents himself after doing multiple intense roles?
“I just try to understand more. Kanya-kanya kasi ‘yan eh. Kanya-kanyang forte, I try to go with method. Works for me. Tinuruan ako ng actors and directors before, they’ve always guided me. The method acting works for me.”
Topakk is the story of an ex special forces operative (Atayde) suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), who – in his bid for redemption as a security guard – attempts to save the life of a woman (Montes) who is being hunted by a corrupt police death squad working for a drug cartel. The twisted narrative finds Atayde’s character waging a war between his own inner demons and those that exist in reality.
In cinemas soon from Nathan Studios, Strawdogs Studio Production, and Theo & Atlas Productions, Inc.
Check out our interview of Topakk star Arjo Atayde and his-co star Sid Lucero and director Richard Somes below: