Whether you’re an excellent wave rider or simply a beach lover, there’s no way that this local surf movie in the works won’t tickle your fancy. Flotsam, a film directed by Jay Abello, promises a romantic comedy plot with feel good music and lots of girls in cute bikinis. Not to mention, it stars our Preview February cover girl Solenn Heussaff.
Derived from the French word floter, which means to float, the working title “flotsam” is actually a maritime term used to describe a floating wreckage of a ship or its cargo. Read about what one of its main cast members, Carla Humphries, had to say about the making of the film before it hits the big screens in November.
Hi Carla! Tell us about this new surf movie you’re working on.
The movie is set in La Union, and it’s called Flotsam. It’s a bunch of stories that happened in a hostel called Flotsam and Jetsam, and it’s kind of like Love Actually and Begin Again. The film’s basically about a group of people who are waiting for that swell, that perfect-peeling wave. They get stuck together in one place, and that’s where we discover each character’s story.
Speaking of the characters, what’s your role like?
I play Mia, the owner of the hostel where all of the characters will eventually come together, and I have my own love story. The treatment is different from your typical love story that’s predictable. We have a teenage love story, a fling, a coming-of-age angle—it has different kinds of love among a group of friends whose lives have intertwined.
Let’s talk about surfing. Have you always known how to surf or did you learn for the movie?
I learned for the movie. I have lots of friends who are part of the surfing community, and Solenn and I had classes while we were there. It’s an amazing feeling that we were able to take advantage of shooting a movie while also learning a new skill. I plan to continue surfing even after the movie.
Are we going to see you in action?
Sadly, I don’t surf in the movie, but you’re going to see lots of girls in bikinis. (Laughs) Mara Lopez and Solenn did surf though, so you’re still going to see some surfing, plus the different angles about a surfer’s life and not just about surfing itself.
Let us in on the making of the film. How was it like shooting with the rest of the production team?
We all became very close. We lived together; we wake up in the morning, make music, and have breakfast. La Union really has that nice, comfortable feel. Everybody’s getting along and it’s like becoming one community with the crew, the cast, the director. Our director Jay Abello is really amazing, very easy to work with. It’s a great feeling to be part of the cast.
That sounds fun! How long were you there for?
Around two weeks. We were living there and it was just super fun. I’m really white and I never get a tan, but somehow now I did. (Laughs) It was a great experience. I’ve never been to La Union prior to this movie, and it was great discovering this part of the Philippines. It’s super cool.
Anything else we should expect from Flotsam?
The beauty of La Union was very well captured by direk Jay Abello. They even went on a 5-hour hike up a mountain to take a scene in the waterfalls. And honestly, the dialog is just very natural, so you’re gonna see a lot of very relatable barkada instances. It’s a really fun movie that will make you want to travel and discover the Philippines.
Is this the first local surfing movie (as opposed to a documentary)?
That, I know of. I think so. It’s made with the local surfers also, so it’s legit. It’s not just a bunch of people trying to be surfers. Plus, there’s a lot of original music in the movie, the kind that I’m sure you all would love to play on a road trip while going to the beach.
So you and Solenn are going to be singing here?
Yes! There’s a lot of feel good music in here.
This interview has been condensed and edited.
Photos from @flotsamandjetsamhostel, @carla_humphries, @solennheussaff on Instagram