There’s never a dull moment whenever you’re with Quark Henares. Every time that I get to be around him, I would always feel cheery because he exudes such a happy vibe all the time. I’ve known him for quite a while, ever since I started working in publishing, and that’s really A WHILE. He’s a very humble individual and that’s probably my most favorite thing about him (well, second would be because he’s the brother of Scarlet Snow Belo…only hahaha!). I don’t think that there’s nothing that he has done already: he’s a director, a producer, a teacher, an actor (nuks! He’s part of the Juday and Angelica flick Ang Dalawang Mrs. Reyes), sang in a band, a writer, and currently the head of Globe Studios, the telecom’s latest platform that provides original local movies and TV series. With everything that he has already achieved, Quark has no plans of slowing down. His drive to share his talents and produce good entertainment is there, and that’s good news. And besides, I’m still waiting for my pivotal role as bitchy friend 2 or irate costumer 1 in one of his future films.
We met up at Village Tavern, a restaurant known for their extensive wine list and good food. I only had about an hour of kamustahan (the bulk of which would be the katitohan and katitahan changes in our lives) and interview because he needed to go back to work and I wanted to catch his movie. I ordered gin and tonic for the both of us since it’s his favorite drink. Gin and tonic is refreshing, I’m not really a fan of the cocktail but I wouldn’t mind having a glass occasionally especially when I’m in the company of a dear friend. Read on as Quark tells us about what gets him into trouble, his dream acting role, and why gin and tonic is his favorite drink.
HOW DID WE MEET?
We met at the PULP office. I was writing for PULP and you were with Conch.
I can’t even remember how we met. Although I do remember knowing him since my PULP days. We would see each other at gigs and events. He knew some of my musician crushes, especially a vocalist who shall not be named to protect my reputation hahaha!
WHAT MAKES YOU MAD?
Quark: Yung mga nanlalaglag. Now that I’m in a corporate setting, I love my office and everybody’s super nice, but once in a while you’d encounter someone who’s very power trippy, yung walang sense of camaraderie.
IF YOU CAN SPEND AN ENTIRE DAY WITH SOMEONE JUST WATCHING MOVIES AND TALKING BETWEEN GAPS, WHO WOULD IT BE AND WHY?
Quark: I think it would have to be Bianca [Yuzon, a singer-songwriter and Quark’s girlfriend] because we’ve done that. We went to Disneyworld, and it was fun but yun din yung time to watch movies. So, that’s what we did. We watched seven films in two days. Lady Bird, Shape of Water, I, Tonya, The Phantom Thread, The Disaster Artist, we even watched The Last Jedi again, tinuhog namin yun. I know we can do it, and we’ve done it many times. I honestly wouldn’t do it with anyone else, and that’s rare to find someone who’s willing to do that with me.
“I remember when we were young, ang daming gimik, but now, a perfect day is staying home, listening to good music, read a good book, watch good stuff, and eat good food.”
WHAT IS A PERFECT DAY FOR YOU?
Quark: It’s so different now that we’re at our age. I remember when we were young, ang daming gimik, but now, a perfect day is staying home, listening to good music, read a good book, watch good stuff, and eat good food.
D: Or kung lalabas ka, walang traffic
Quark: Yes, that’s heaven.
D: Magiiba talaga yung mga gusto mo sa buhay kapag tumatanda ka na no?
Quark: Oo, at gumanda talaga yung buhay ko when I worked near where I live, I cannot stress enough, especially in the Philippines, how important that is. Age really changes your life.
WHAT DO YOU THINK IS YOUR BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT?
Quark: Teaching [Note: Quark taught short and digital film in Ateneo]. Having taught so many awesome film-makers from Dan Villegas to Wincy Ong. I counted, 10 of my students have already made feature films, and that’s not bad, that’s one student per year of teaching for me. Even the people who do videos for us, and not of my choosing, even before I came in, most of them are my students. Teaching is something that I really am grateful that I was able to do. I don’t think that I can do it so much anymore but having had the pleasure and honor of teaching so many brilliant people is just good.
D: E movie?
Quark: Keka, and I love Rakenrol also.
“Teaching is something that I really am grateful that I was able to do. I don’t think that I can do it so much anymore but having had the pleasure and honor of teaching so many brilliant people is just good.”
WHAT TRAIT DO YOU THINK YOU HAVE THAT UPSETS PEOPLE?
Quark: I’m loud and chismoso.
D: Pero di ba, kapag tumatanda ka, medyo kumakalma ka naman?
Quark: Yes, that’s true. I remember being very annoyed thinking about myself in college. “Ingay nito, tangina.”
D: Yung pagkachismoso mo ba got yourself into trouble?
Quark: I think so. I’m pretty sure. No, yes, it has. Over many years. It’s the one thing that always gets me into trouble, I think.
WHO DO YOU LISTEN TO WHEN YOU NEED LIFE ADVICE? CAREER ADVICE?
Quark: My dad really gives good career advice. Life advice? It would be Diego Castillo or Erwin Romulo, the wise men. Erwin is very blunt, but if I need sweeter cushioned words, then Diego.
WHAT THREE THINGS DO YOU HAVE TO BRING WITH YOU EVERY DAY?
Quark: Laptop, for sure, my phones, both work and personal. I would always want to have a blank book na walang lines, so I can draw, and a black sign pen.
SINCE YOU’VE BEEN ACTING, WHAT WOULD BE YOUR DREAM ROLE IN A MOVIE?
Quark: I think a drug addict or someone frantic. I can put that noisy, 18-year-old me to good use. There was this movie I did with Malay Javier called Every Room is a Planet, I played a sort of wigged out person, kind of losing his mind, I liked that role. I liked my role in this movie with Judy Ann and Angelica. Yung kabatuhan mo si Judy Ann, I mean I love Angelica Panganiban, she’s awesome, pero iba rin yung lumaki ka following and admiring Judy Ann. Wow! Ang crazy!
WHAT ARE YOU MOST EXCITED ABOUT THIS YEAR?
Quark: I really want to do a film and I want to do it independently. I’m writing a script now and I’m very excited about it but it’s something that I cannot do with Globe kasi it’s very dark. It’s political not the way you think it’s political but it’s political. And I think, this is the year of Globe Studios. Our film, Ang Panahon ng Halimaw, the one that Lav Diaz directed, is going to be shown at the Berlin Film Festival. As a producer, I’m excited to be doing extra stuff.
WHY IS GIN AND TONIC YOUR FAVORITE DRINK?
Quark: It’s always been a drink that’s been around. It’s smooth and dependable. Nagiiba yung lasa nya kapag iba yung gin. I really like drinking it with either Botanist, Monkey 47, or Hendrick’s. Umiiba parin sha, but it still sticks to its core, just like my projects. Whether it’s a music video, commercial, short story, or a feature film, at the end of the day, it still goes back to storytelling.