While most people are entirely against the movie ‘Tililing,’ a local mental health group is encouraging everyone to reserve their judgment until it’s released.

Filipino filmmaker Darryl Yap, who is no stranger to controversies and public backlashes, is on the receiving end of criticism once again as netizens pointed out the misinterpretation of mental illness in the movie poster of his upcoming latest film, ‘Tililing.’

The material, which you can check out below, sees Baron Geisler, Gina Pareño, Chad Kinis, Donnalyn Bartolome, Candy Pangilinan, and Yumi Lacsamana making exaggerated expressions while sticking their tongue out.

tililing movie poster, UDOU
Tililing Film Poster | Image credit- VinCentimers Official Facebook Page

Many critics have called out the poster for seemingly stigmatizing people who suffer from mental health issues. Others have also expressed their disapproval of the movie title, ‘Tililing,’ which is a Filipino derogatory term used to refer to someone with a mental illness.

ABS-CBN actress Liza Soberano was among the ones who voiced out their concerns regarding the poster. Unbeknownst to some, the 23-year-old Kapamilya star is also a psychology student, currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Psychology in Southville International School and Colleges.

On February 8, she took to Twitter and wrote: “Really hoping that this movie will spread awareness and enlighten us on the struggles of dealing with mental health. But the poster? It’s a no for me. Mental health is NOT a joke. Stop the stigma.”

Darryl Yap, who previously drew flak for a series of problematic works such as Virgin Marie and The Cousins, responded to his critics via his production’s Facebook page VinCentiments.

“Sa iyo, Miss Liza Soberano, ang iyong pag-asa na sana’y makapagbigay liwanag ang aming pelikula sa pagpapalawak ng kaalaman sa pangkalusugang pangkaisipan ay hindi masasayang. HINDI KA NAMIN BIBIGUIN,” the ‘Jowable’ director wrote.

Yap added that the actors in the film have had their share of mental health struggles and wouldn’t take part in a project that would destroy their principles and personality.

“Kapag napanood niyo na po ang #Tililing ay mauunawaan ninyo bakit ito ang titulo, bakit nakalabas ang kanilang dila; at bakit namin tinitindigan ang kalidad at mensahe ng pelikula,” he added.

However, if others are already calling for boycott ahead of the film’s release, a local mental health support group named ‘Anxiety and Depression Support Philippines’ wants to give Darryl and his project a chance.

“We can’t judge the movie if we haven’t seen it yet,” the organization wrote. “Let’s just hope that it is done tastefully.”

“Paano ang mental health community? Stigmatized na nga kami, diba. Medyo hindi maganda ang dating ng poster na ito. Hindi lang sa pagsstereotyping, sa ikinabit na expression sa salitang tililing kundi sa salitang tililing mismo,” ADSP said.

“Even us patients and the professionals don’t use this word. Even the government is careful in addressing people with mental health struggles. Wag natin pausuhin,” they added.

“Do understand na for the sake of publicity, most people will do everything for marketing. Wala silang intensyon manakit, ang intensyon nila ay bumenta. Nung inisip yung poster, siyempre ang inisip nila ay kung paano magiging catchy at mapansin. Hindi nila inisip na kung may matatapakan ba or accurate ba.”

“Kung maganda man ang intensyon ng pelikula, exciting yan! Sana may guidance ng mga eksperto para pasok talaga sa banga lalo kung para sa mental health awareness ito. If not.. oh well, that’s showbiz.”

To further prove their point, the support group posted their own, corrected version of the ‘Tililing’ poster. Featuring a group of ordinary people wearing ordinary expressions on their faces, the photo aims to show that even those who don’t appear to be insane on the outside can still be suffering mentally.

ADSP Recreates Tililing Poster, UDOU
Courtesy of: Anxiety and Depression Support Philippines

The ‘Anxiety and Depression Support Philippines’, ADSP in short, is a movement group created to reach out to people struggling with their mental health and build a community where participants can get support and understanding. It currently has over 230,000 followers on Facebook.

What’s your take on this new Darryl Yap issue? Tell us in the comments below!

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