Filipino actress Alessandra de Rossi is making her directorial debut with “My Amanda” — and she’s doing it on the global stage thanks to Netflix. “My Amanda” is the story of two unusually close friends, Amanda (De Rossi) and TJ (Piolo Pascual), who seem perfect for each other but have a platonic relationship. This Filipino film premieres globally on Netflix on July 15.
“Don’t be afraid to love. Don’t be afraid to make friends. Don’t be afraid of the journey. You’ll never know what you’ll find. And ayun lang (that’s it), how far are you willing to go for friendship — for a friend? Hanggang hatid-sundo lang ba sa (Is it just just fetching and bringing your friend back to their home during a) road trip? Or buong buhay na ito (will this friendship last for a lifetime)?” De Rossi said at today’s Netflix press briefing for “My Amanda”.
Between friendship and love
The “My Amanda” trailer, which De Rossi and Pascual unveiled during the press briefing, shows how this movie will attempt to answer the question of what kind of a relationship lies between friendship and love. It gives an idea of the kind of close friendship Amanda and TJ have, showing how they banter and bicker but also support each other as they go through all the highs and lows of their lives.
Particularly this exchange:
Amanda: Tingnan mo ako. Wala ka bang nararamdaman para sa akin? (Look at me. Don’t you have any feelings for me?)
TJ: Meron. Sumasama ‘yung pakiramdam ko ‘pag nakatingin lang sa’yo. (I do feel something. I feel awful just looking at you.)
In fact, the real-life friendship of De Rossi and Pascual shone throughout the press briefing, as they traded quips and teased each other.
Fuffy and Fream
De Rossi, who also wrote the screenplay, said that the movie is based on her real-life friendships with men. In fact, her best male friend is named TJ and that’s why she gave that name to the character that Pascual plays. Even the pet names Fuffy (TJ) and Fream (Amanda) are the ones De Rossi actually uses with that best friend in real life.
She, however, explained that the characters and the story aren’t based on their real-life relationship, but was inspired by the dynamics of their friendship.
Asked what message she would like to share with viewers, De Rossi replied: “Watch it with an open heart. No judgment. Acceptance. Just don’t say anything. Just like a true friend.”
“The relationship between TJ and Amanda is just icing on the cake. What transpires through the course of time, and what happens because of that relationship is the true gem of the film. That’s why you have to watch it,” Pascual said.