THE movie “Felix Manalo” opened in theaters around the country on Wednesday, giving Filipinos an opportunity to learn about the man who built a church that now has three to five million members in 102 countries.
“Felix Manalo” director Joel Lamangan encouraged the public to see the movie which stars Dennis Trillo as Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) founder Felix Manalo.
The movie, he noted, is “not just about the life of a remarkable man, it is a tribute to the Filipino spirit.”
“The story of Felix Manalo is very much the story of every Filipino who has never allowed adversity to discourage him from pursuing his goals and dreams; you don’t have to be an INC member to appreciate that,” Lamangan said in an interview.
He expressed hopes that the renewed interest in history generated by the film “Heneral Luna” will encourage the public to watch “Felix Manalo,” as the movie traces the growth of the church in relation to the major historical events of the country.
“Heneral Luna showed that there is a market for movies like these,” the multi-awarded director.
“Felix Manalo” set two world records in its premiere night — the Largest Audience At A Film Premiere and the Largest Audience At A Film Screening with 43,624 people.
Lamangan said the movie raked in P15 million at 1 p.m. on opening day, the same amount earned by “Heneral Luna” for a full week of showing.
To accommodate the rush of moviegoers, he said the movie will be shown in more theaters nationwide at an earlier schedule at 9 a.m. for its first run.
“Filipinos are known to be the most resilient people in the world; we can survive and triumph over all kinds of challenges, natural and man-made. Felix Manalo, I think, reiterates this truth.”
The film stars Dennis Trillo as Felix Manalo and Bela Padilla as his wife Honorata de Guzman-Manalo. Also in the movie are Gabby Concepcion, AJ Muhlach, Heart Evangelista, Snooky Serna, Gladys Reyes, Joel Torre, Elizabeth Oropesa, and Jaime Fabregas.