Nocebo” actress Chai Fonacier is very happy and proud of Golden Globe nominated Filipino
actress Dolly de Leon.
At “Nocebo’s” press screening on Wednesday at Shangri–La Plaza in Mandaluyong, Chai
said that she rejoices with the whole country despite Dolly not winning in the 80th Golden
Globes held at The Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills.
“Kahit hindi nanalo, babati pa in ako. First Filipino sya to be nominated [at the Golden
Globes]. So proud of her. She is proof na walang kakulangan sa skill and talent ang mga
Pilipino, kailangan lang ng support,” she said.
There is no pressure, however, for her to equal of surpass the international success that
Dolly is getting. For Chai, she is happy the Filipino talent is being recognized worldwide.
“Masaya lang nakakapag contribute tayo. I e–echo ko ang sinabi nya, ang award ay hindi
naman end all and be all ng career ng tao. Masalya kung meron pero ‘yang sinabi nya sa
interview and I really appreciate that she said, no I haven’t arrived. There is no arriving.
There is constant forward motion furthering your craft, something like that. It is not verbatim.
I go by the words of the great Miss Dolly de Leon.”
“Nocebo,” a Filipino–Irish thriller that has Chai playing the Filipino nanny in the household of
Christine and Felix, played by Eva Green and Mark Strong. It is directed by Irish Film and
Television Awards–winning filmmaker Lorcan Finnegan and showing in the Philippines
starting January 18, distributed by TBA Studios.
Eva Green’s character suffers from a mysterious illness that confounds doctors and
frustrates her husband. Help arrives in the form of Diana, played by Chair, who uses
traditional folk healing to reveal a horrifying truth.
Chai revealed she had a panic attack when she was making her audition video because she
learned Eva was the actress she was talking to in the scene.
“Kinabahan ako nang bongga. ‘Yung nag audition ala 5 na nang umaga natapos. Sana
hindi na lang sinabi sa akin,” she recalled.
Chai said that the Philippines and Ireland share a culture steeped in paganism.
because of colonialism,” she related.
“For those who don’t know, Ireland na colonize rin sila. A lot of their pagan culture has been
erased by Catholicism and colonialism. Medyo parallel ang experience ng Ireland and
Philippines historically when it comes to subjugation and colonialism by a foreign power.”
She said there is still those who practice traditional practices up to now, but a lot of this part
of Filipino culture has been forgotten. “Malaking nawala. Na de demonize,” she said.
For the actress, it is important to showcase regional culture to facilitate understanding
“Kailangan muna natin marinig ‘yung mga kwento sa sariling barangay nating Pilipinas. I
always say that regional stories are very important kasi ito ang nagiging cultural ID natin.
We can introduce ourselves to each other as neighbors. Nawawala ‘yung mga
The more stories we tell stories about ourselves, the more na naiintindihan natin ang isa’t
“And the more naiintidinhan natin ang isa’t isa as a people….eventually [we get] a real
appreciation of what diversity means. Na ‘pag sinabing diversity, magkakaiba talaga tayo
pero we can live together, we can appreciate each other and understand the plight of each
other, hindi tayo separate from their plight. Nasa isang barangay tayo.”
For those who like thrillers, catch “Nocebo” on Wednesday, January 18 in theaters. (E.