“You’re nothing but a second-rate, trying-hard copycat!”
That was the line in Emmanuel Borlaza’s Bituing Walang Ningning that catapulted Cherie Gil to kontrabida fame, and cemented the line as the cattiest in Philippine cinema’s history.
Now, the line is at the center of a controversy, involving the musical adaptation of the classic film, which will be staged beginning today.
Gil has sent a cease-and-desist letter to Viva Films and Resorts World asking them to not use that line, saying she owns the intellectual property to it.
However, this was met by criticism from Borlaza, who said that the line came from him, and that the screenplay was written by Orlando Nadres. Viva Films’ lawyer Heather Annang said that Viva owns the rights to the film. According to her:
Under the intellectual property code, lahat ng output nila bilang direktor, scriptwriter, artista, pagmamay-ari ng Viva, in the course of their employment, belongs to Viva.
(Under the intellectual property code, the output of the director, scriptwriter, artist, in the course of their employment, belongs to Viva.)
Theater actress Cris Villonco, who essays Gil’s role of Lavinia Arguelles, said:
As far as I’m concerned, as long as there’s no court order I’m saying the line on Thursday night.
Ang sinabi po sa akin as long as there’s no court order – and alam ko po it was a cease and desist notice – ay sasabihin ko pa din po on Thursday night at until Sunday this weekend. Tapos tingnan po natin ano ang mangyayari next weekend.
(What they told me is as long as there’s no court order – I know it was a cease and desist notice – I can still say the line on Thursday night until Sunday this weekend. Let’s see what happens next weekend.)
According to Annang, the line will still be used in the musical.
What do you think of this issue? Share your thoughts below!