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Quiet, Beautiful and Painful: MULI by Hanz Shayne



As its one-word title rightfully suggests, "MULI", a short film by Hanz Shayne can be described as 19 solid minutes of quiet, beautiful wishful thinking slowly transforming into painful peace--and another five minutes staring blankly at the screen during end credits.


HAUNTING. Its plot would not be leaning into the usual "tear-jerker" side of the spectrum of short dramatic films, rather, it's that film that slowly pokes and meddles into your painful memories---those you'd rather wish didn't happen; the type you wouldn't dare relive.


This drama tells the story of Mark who was enjoying a wonderful relationship with his wife, Anna. Unfortunately, as unplanned life is, she passed away and one year was enough for Mark to reach his breaking point.


MUD Studios couldn't resist but probe further into its writer/director's mind, just to somehow get a sense of closure we all probably need to give Mark's character. Thankfully, Hanz Shayne obliged to a brief interview. After making us feel unspeakable things, it's probably the least she can do (insert revengeful eyeroll).


What inspired you to write MULI?


A loss of a loved one has and will always be one of my greatest fears. I suppose writing this film was a way for me to process that it's just something that happens and that they'll always be remembered with the memories they leave behind. 


How was it like filming MULI? How was the chemistry among the cast and production crew?


"Muli" was very important to me, considering it was my last film for the rest of my film school stay. I had to get my closest friends to be part of my crew, of course. It was an intimate cast and crew with longtime friendships made. 



What was your personal reason for casting Ms. Mina Cruz and Mr. Mike Liwag?


Before I even started writing the film, I've always had Mina in mind. We've worked on a previous project and she really fits the mental image I had of Anna. As for Mike, it's a funny story, but he wasn't my initial choice for Mark. The best moments always happen unexpectedly since he ended up being such a superb actor and friend. 



Are you looking into maintaining your mark in the drama genre? Or do you want your next projects to be something different?


It would be nice to venture into different genres. Probably something lighthearted. A feel good or a comedy film that's apt for today's time. 




What would be your dream film project?


Something just as heartfelt as "Muli", I suppose. There's something else about seeing vulnerability in film and the relatability that comes with it. 



What do you think are the most important elements to consider in pulling off a dramatic short-film?


I've noticed that an impactful ending that ties everything together is important in drama. It's the deep exhale of it all. 

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