Quezon’s Game: Our history with Ike and Mamie

Still can’t move on after watching the movie, a lot of fans tried to catch Quezon’s Game one more time and made testimonials which also encouraged others to watch a part of history with former President Manuel L. Quezon as he saved more than a thousand Jews months before World War 2.

The actors headed by Raymond Bagatsing captured the hearts of the movie goers and not only that, the whole cast deserves an applause too as each and everyone portrayed their parts very well.

Two of the characters we love are Ike and Mamie played by real life married couple David Bianco and Jennifer Blair-Bianco. Their characters as Dwight D. Eisenhower and Mamie Eisenhower made us realised that their roles were vital and very engaged during the time of President Manuel L. Quezon. 

David Bianco & Jennifer Blair-Bianco, playing the role of Ike & Mamie Eisenhower (inset)
Here’s the interview from this phenomenal couple:

1)        What inspired you to become an actor?

David: I grew up playing with fire, knives, bow and arrows, and slingshots. As one of five children, my parents made us play outside and our imaginations exploded on account of the infinite possibilities handed to us. Getting paid to keep this childhood alive only seemed a matter of time.

2)        How did you prepared for the role?

David: I spent time reading “At Ease” and watched as much documentary footage as I could find online. While the film focuses primarily on Quezon’s story, I still needed to understand the full backstory of how Eisenhower became this great friend and ally of the President.

3)        What kind of roles would you like to play?

David: I enjoy playing real life historical icons, but I am also interested in shining a light on stories of Christian’s who struggle with their faith. I’m also interested in being in a series where audiences can enjoy the full range of a characters arch!

4)       Who would be your dream crew be to work with?

David: Besides working with the talented Rosen Family, I hope to work with local filmmaker Mikhail Red and would like to again work with Jerrold Tarog (Appeared in Heneral Luna). On the international scene, I love Alfonso Cuaróns films (Children of Men, Y Tu Mama Tambien, Gravity). I want to challenge myself and have enjoyed working with local filmmakers Benjamin Crane, Abbey Frisco (The Storm) as well as Joshua Bellis and Rachel Hart on their EMMY nominated film “Memories.”

5)        What were you thinking of while doing the scenes because it looked so real?

David: I am listening to my co-actors with my whole being and searching for clues about their feelings on the chaos and problems at hand. Eisenhower was a man of action, so feelings aside, I had a commitment to find a solution to help save these innocent Jews.

6)        QG was an eye opener for local audiences. Filipinos are not taught about this collaboration and friendship between MQ and Eisenhower. If given another chance in portraying another hero like Ike/Mamie, are you still going to accept?

Jennifer: David and I would be honored to play these parts or any other unique historical figures!

7)        What are your next projects after QG?

Jennifer: In addition to film, I am also a commercial actor and have several projects lined up in the coming months. David: I am also currently developing an untitled film with Mark Lechner and Benood Dadfar and am in preproduction for a psychological thriller.

8)        How does it feels to be with your real life wife/husband in the movie?

David: My wife is the most talented woman I know. To make memories on screen together for our children and grandkids to see is something I will cherish forever.

Jennifer: I met David on my very first professional paid acting job. We were acting in a musical together and it was a wonderful feeling then and it is still a wonderful feeling now. At one point we were in tons of back to back projects with each other. So much so that we decided to take a break from it! We are now at a time in our careers where we embrace each and every moment to act together. It truly is an honor for me.

9)        How did you think the film would be received and did you anticipate it’s global appeal and success?

When Matthew spoke to Jennifer and I about these roles several years ago we had no idea the world and specifically this country (US) would be facing its polarizing immigration crisis. This film speaks to hero in each of us, and asks us to step up and play our part. These themes are universal, and in addition to its successful festival run I am so excited to see it on its fourth week in cinemas!!!

Quezon’s Game is still in selected cinemas. To know more about the movie, please check https://m.facebook.com/QuezonsGame/

By Grace Bondad Nicolas

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