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The next step for Julie Anne San Jose and Rayver Cruz

Even before publicly declaring their love for each other through their concert late last year, fans of Julie Anne San Jose and Rayver Cruz — who go by their love team nickname 'JulieVer' — have already been spoiled with projects that the two were sharing.

From their weekly shows “The Clash” and “All-Out Sunday” to their live performances onstage, the lovebirds always share their undeniable chemistry.

Julie Anne San Jose and Rayver Cruz’s first film together will finally open in cinemas today.

Now they will try to capture the same chemistry and bring it to the next big thing: the big movie screen.

Opening in cinemas nationwide today is their first movie together, “The Cheating Game.”

Produced by GMA Public Affairs, who also debuts as a film producer for the said project, The Cheating Game is a romantic drama about the game people play after getting cheated on. It shows a more mature, relatable, and realistic side to modern-day dating.

During the virtual media conference for the movie, both lead stars shared a sigh of relief that the audience will finally be able to see the project they have been working on for years.

“We started shooting it before the pandemic, and we shot some scenes in the province. Then, we continued filming this year. It still feels surreal because time really flew by so quickly,” San Jose noted, adding that working with Cruz in a new medium added excitement to completing the movie.

Cruz likewise said he felt the same, “I have mixed emotions right now, but the excitement outweighs everything because people will finally see the film we worked on. I am very proud of this movie, especially because it's our first project together with Julie in a film.”

The film follows the story of Hope (San Jose), an idealistic young professional who thinks she can change the world and that she knows everything. Hope is devoted to her fiancé and the non-governmental organization (NGO) they've built together until a sex video of her boyfriend with another woman surfaces.

‘The Cheating Game’ film sheds light on various red flags in relationships as well as the different stages of grief after betrayal.

Heartbroken, Hope walks away from the engagement, the NGO, and the life she thought was hers. She starts her new career as a content producer in a company that, unknown to her, moonlights as a troll factory. Determined to never be outsmarted by a guy again, she designs a 'cheat sheet' detailing the 'anatomy of a cheater' and uses this as her guide as she navigates her way around the dating world.

She then meets Miguel (Cruz), a self-made businessman who exudes green flags for a partner. Hope seems to have found the perfect guy. But as they become closer, long-kept secrets begin to surface.

San Jose, who was last seen as the meek Maria Clara in the hit GMA prime time drama, admitted that the role of Hope is a leap of faith.

“If you watch this film, you'll see all kinds of elements of cheating. I learned a lot throughout the entire production, from the story itself. This is far different from what I did in 'Maria Clara at Ibarra' — you'll see a different Julie who is more daring, bolder, and stronger. I feel like I had to take a leap of faith, just like the rest of the cast,” San Jose said.

The film producers, meanwhile, guarantee the audiences are in for a treat with the film — it's more than just a rom-com.

“We really wanted to offer romance to the audience, but we want it to be something they won't expect. You think it's a romcom, but then it becomes something completely different in the middle,” said GMA Pictures Senior Vice President Nessa Valdellon.

Joining San Jose and Cruz in the cast is a mix of young and veteran cast members that include Martin Del Rosario, Winwyn Marquez, Yayo Aguila, Candy Pangilinan, Phi Palmos, Thea Tolentino, and Paolo Contis.

Finally, the lead weighs in on the lesson the moviegoing public might just pick up from it.

“For me, cheating is non-negotiable. Once it's done, it's done. But my major takeaway from this film is to forgive yourself,” San Jose said emphatically.

“I enjoyed making the movie because doing it was a learning experience for me to become aware of how to handle being cheated. After all, we can become blinded when we fall in love,” Cruz ended.

Produced by GMA Public Affairs under GMA Pictures, “The Cheating Game” is co-written and directed by the best-selling author Rod Marmol. The film is based on the original concept and story by Peabody award-winning documentary writer and producer Shao Masula and co-written by Jessie Villabrille.

Credit belongs to : www.manilatimes.net

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