VIDEO: Bubble Gang director shares passion for film photography
Video and Text by Pia Faustino
TV Director Uro dela Cruz (far right) on the set of the comedy show, "Bitoy's Funniest Videos," starring Michael V. Uro dela Cruz
As a director of some of GMA-7's most popular comedy shows, Uro dela Cruz spends much of his creative energy making Filipino viewers laugh. His shows, both present and past, include "Bubble Gang," "Show Me Da Manny," and "Bitoy's Funniest Videos." He's also written or directed a number of movies including "Shake Rattle and Roll" and "Scorpio Nights." Such work requires a director to have his finger on the pulse of Pinoy pop culture; to know what will or will not appeal to masses of Filipino viewers. That's why it may surprise many that the same man responsible for Michael V's "Bathroom Dance" —a side-splitting, toilet-humor parody of Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance"— actually likes to spend his free time taking poignant black and white photos using cameras often older than himself.
One of the director's photographs, taken near the Santa Mesa LRT-2 station in Manila. Uro dela Cruz
Unlike TV comedy, film photography has a small fanbase. And Dela Cruz happens to be the club president —literally. He leads a small but tight-knit group of film photography enthusiasts called Rangefinder Filipinas. The group meets every Saturday night at one of the few remaining private darkrooms in Metro Manila to show-and-tell antique cameras, develop pictures, and share tips and techniques for using film.
Dela Cruz poses with some of his antique cameras. Photographer Mitch Mauricio took pictures of the director's studio for her series on Filipino artists' creative spaces called "Anik-Anik Love." Mitch Mauricio
Dela Cruz says he loves film for the discipline and patience that its use requires. "You can't just keep shooting. You have to ponder the image before you take it," he says. In this video, the director-photographer gives GMANews.TV a rare peek at his prized collection of antique cameras and talks about his lifelong love affair with film photography.