Maureen Wroblewitz, Vance Larena groomed to become next online stars in 2021

MANILA — After its first online showing of the 46th Metro Manila Filmfest, will roll out its upcoming releases starting February 2021 headlined by its new bets for stardom led by 2017 “Asia’s Next Top Model” winner Maureen Wroblewitz.

Maureen Wroblewitz and Kit Thompson. Handout

The 22-year-old beauty’s debut film is Reality Entertainment’s “Runaway,” a romantic drama which was shot entirely in New Zealand before the pandemic with Kit Thompson, under the direction of Katski Flores.

Wroblewitz told ABS-CBN News that she is happy to be the muse of the latest video-on-demand platform, which is an affiliate of Reality, managed by Dondon Monteverde and director Erik Matti.

“I feel very honored to have been chosen as the leading lady of ‘Runaway.’ I‘m so grateful for the trust, especially me being a newbie and not having any acting experience or workshop beforehand and still not being able to speak Tagalog fluently,” she told ABS-CBN News Tuesday.

“Direk Katski and Sir Dondon only knew that I‘ve wanted to be an actress ever since I was younger so I would like to thank them for believing in me and for giving me this opportunity.”

Wroblewitz also regards “Runaway” as a high point amid her struggles in 2020, including her recovery from COVID-19 before Christmas.

Vance Larena. Handout

Vance Larena, who is best known for his breakout role in the Netflix project “Dead Kids,” will also headline the two Upstream offerings — Matti’s horror thriller “Rabid,” featuring Ricci Rivero and Pam Gonzales; and “A Girl and a Guy,” an unusual millennial love story with upcoming sexy star and popular commercial model Alexa Miro.

“Who would have thought na sa dami-dami ng leading man, i-ha-handpick ako ni Direk Matti,” Larena told ABS-CBN News Tuesday. “Sobrang saya namin at sobrang saya namin nun. At unexpected blessing ito sa amin. Sino ba naman ang ‘di nangangarap makatrabaho ang isa sa pinakamagaling at hinahangan at batikang direktor ng industriya?”

Upstream will also show the second season of the successful boys’ love (BL) series, Regal Entertainment Inc.’s “Ben x Jim,” which stars Jerome Ponce and Teejay Marquez.

Despite threat of piracy, Matti and Monteverde are optimistic about the future of video-on-demand platforms.

“We were able to reach a lot of viewers, which was never done by any other online platform in the country. And with this year’s MMFF going worldwide, we were also able to reach audiences from all over the globe in countries like the United States, Canada, Australia, Singapore and UAE,” they said.

Upstream has also announced the live streaming of Senator Manny Pacquiao’s much-awaited fight in Dubai in April 2021.

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