Piolo Pascual's upcoming horror film Mallari has released its first trailer, and it's guaranteed to creep you out.
The film is inspired by the actual events revolving around Catholic priest Juan Severino Mallari and how he became the country's first and only recorded serial killer, having murdered 57 people in the 1800s.
In the trailer released on Saturday, Oct. 7, Mallari (played by Piolo) is first depicted as a harmless man with his clean-cut hairstyle, eyeglasses, and basic polo. He visits a town that later turns into a hellish nightmare with bloody killings and walking zombies caused by the uncanny priest's monstrous deeds.
Adding more fright to the 36-second clip are the distorted sound and increasing noises played alongside the blood-curling scenes.
Directed by Derick Cabrido with a script by Enrico Santos, Mallari crosses three timelines—1851 (Spanish colonization), 1950 (post-war times), and 2023 (present-day)—and features historic locations, with one village purposely built for the film.
The movie was four years in the making and is Piolo's first horror film since being in the showbiz industry for over two decades.
During his contract signing for the movie last June, Piolo said that his longtime love for horror films and Mallari's intricate story inspired him to take on the project.
“I am a religious person but I actually am a fan of horror films. I love watching horror, the supernatural. But since I got stuck with rom-coms, I had no chance to do any horror films,” he said.
“But seeing the project, reading it, finding out the truthfulness of the character that is based on a true story, I said, there are a lot of films that have been coming out from different countries, because of the streaming platforms you get to watch them, I think we should be proud of what we can do as well.”
Although the film is expected to draw mixed reactions because of its subject, Piolo said that the beauty and art of the story and its planned execution made him say "yes" to the project.
He explained, “It’s not to glorify the serial killers, of course, but to have an interpretation of this first and the only documented serial killer in the Philippines… This is that one chance that I didn’t want to pass up on. Basically knowing that we also have this kind of story that we can do in a cinematic way, I wanted to be part of that experience.
Joining Piolo as cast members of Mallari are JC Santos, Janella Salvador, Elisse Joson, Mylene Dizon, and Ms. Gloria Diaz. Its premiere date is yet to be announced.