Angelica Panganiban and Avid Liongoren share experience working on “Hayop Ka! The Nimfa Dimaano Story”

by Matthew Escosia
Hayop Ka Netflix
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By: Katrina Topacio


SEA Wave had the opportunity to interview director Avid Liongoren and actress Angelica Panganiban at a virtual media conference arranged by Netflix, where they both shared their experiences working on the animated film Hayop Ka! The Nimfa Dimaano Story.

The film follows the titular Nimfa (Panganiban), a pretty perfume sales kitty at a department store, and her romantic (mis)adventures with her boyfriend Roger (Robin Padilla), the macho mongrel janitor, and Iñigo Villanueva (Sam Milby), the rich business dog. Will Nimfa and Roger’s love will prevail or will Iñigo’s high society charms will tear them apart?

Inspiration behind “Hayop Ka! The Nimfa Dimaano Story”

When asked how they came up with the story of the film, Liongoren said it was inspired by talk radio. He recalls its beginnings coming to him in the middle of traffic with friends. Getting tired of listening to music, they tuned in to a radio drama instead. “Tawa lang kami ng tawa doon sa tropes at sa paano mag-boses ang mga tao sa radio drama” (“We just kept laughing at all the different tropes and how the voices of the people on radio drama sounded like”), said Liongoren .

Liongoren then heard the ubiquitous line “Hayop ka!” (“You animal!”) and thought, “Paano kaya kung mga hayop talaga sila” (“What if they were really animals”)?

Hayop Ka Netflix

He found more inspiration from nightly call-in radio programs, where a DJ would offer love and relationship advice to listeners. “Yung may babae na tatawag or lalake na magkwekwento ng problema niya tapos papagalitan siya ng DJ, pero habang pinapagalitan siya meron namang legitimate na advice” (“The girls or guys would call the radio show to rant about their problems, then the DJ would reprimand them while offering legitimate advice”).


Creating a scene for locally animated films

In the interview, Liongoren expressed that he wanted more animated films to be created and for other studios to start their own animated projects.

“Especially since we’re still in the pandemic, it’s harder to mount live-action movies. Animation is actually something that can move forward in this setting. I hope that more people get into this so that there’s more work for our local animators.” said Liongoren .

Hayop Ka Netflix

Despite the boycott call on social media sites because of the involvement of actor Robin Padilla in the project, the film has still received enormous support from people who see it as an excellent opportunity for Filipino animators to showcase their artistic animation skills internationally.


Angelica Panganiban as the voice of Nimfa

When asked what drove her to take on the role, Panganiban said, “Inisip ko lang, hindi ba sa Hollywood naman yung mga ibang artista talagang tumatawid din sila sa voice acting, inexplore rin nila. Yun naman yung inisip ko naWow nakaka-Hollywood ito ah. Sabi ko sa sarili ko, sige nga gawin ko nga ito, baka mamaya kaya ko naman pala” (“I just thought, don’t Hollywood actors usually explore voice acting. I said to myself, okay I’ll give it a try because maybe I can do it after all”).

Panganiban admits voice acting proved to be difficult and challenging. “Ever since acting na yung ginagawa ko. ‘Pag nasa harap ka ng kamera, package deal lahat gagana. Sa voice, boses mo lang yung naririnig, parang yun lang yung chance mo para maexpress kung ano talaga yung nararamdaman ng character” (“Acting is what I’ve been doing ever since. Whenever I’m in front of the camera, everything works together so I can act. With voice acting, voices are the only thing you will hear and it’s the only way for you to express what the character is feeling”), she shared.

Hayop Ka Netflix

However, Panganiban said that the project was surprisingly a fun and exciting experience for her. “Masaya naman yung project dahil medyo comedy siya, in a way pwede pa pag-laruan and naging maganda naman yung balance habang trinatrabaho naman, hindi naman lahat ay binuhos nila ng mabibigat na eksena through one day. May hinga moments naman” (“The project was fun because it’s a comedy, so in a way the script and delivery could be played with and the balance was good because they didn’t give all the heavy scenes all at once”), Panganiban said.

Talking about her character Nimfa, Panganiban said and lightly teased, “Hindi siya perpekto eh, maraming flaws yung character niya. Pero at the end, natuto siya sa mahirap na paraan. Actually na-enjoy ko siyang gawin and paanorin kasi hindi siya perpekto. Be ready na alam mo may karma yan, may kapalit lahat ng ginagawa nating mali sa mundo” (“She isn’t perfect, and she had a lot of character flaws. But at the end, she learned her lesson the hard way. I actually enjoyed this project because of Nimfa’s flaws. Be ready to know that everything bad you do in this world has a consequence”).

Hayop Ka! The Nimfa Dimaano Story is available for streaming on Netflix. Watch it here and tell us what you think about this trending film in the comments section below!


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