Cathy Garcia-Molina

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Cathy Garcia-Molina
Born Cathy Rosales Garcia
(1971-11-28) November 28, 1971 (age 42)
Quezon City, Philippines
Occupation Film and television director
Years active 1990-present

Cathy Garcia-Molina (born November 28, 1971) is a Filipino film and television director. She has directed most romantic-comedy films distributed by Star Cinema. She has also directed a few TV series, which aired on ABS-CBN. She is considered to be the country's box-office director, with seven of her films entering the list of highest-grossing films in the Philippines.

Major films[edit]

One More Chance (2007)[edit]

In 2007, Molina worked with John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo for the second time in the film One More Chance (first time was in the film Close to You), released by Star Cinema. It differed from her previous films, becoming her first romantic film to contain such solid drama and a mature feeling. In an interview, she stated "This one's different, though, as it's more of a drama and not really a romantic-comedy. In romantic comedies, we usually follow the formula of the two lovers having a cute meet, then they start fighting each other, but you know that in the end, they will still end up in each other's arms. This time, the film opens showing the lovers [...] breaking up right at the start of the story. That's why this is really different from any movie I've done before or any movie John Lloyd and Bea have made in the past."[1] The film was given a B rating by the Cinema Evaluation Board (CEB), saying "[Cruz and Alonzo] have graduated from their bubble-gummy roles and can really be considered serious actors now." The board also described their performance as "very good and sensitive."[2] Aside from receiving positive response from film critics, the film did well in the box-office, grossing ₱66,334,614 in its opening weekend.[3] It grossed a total of ₱152,791,025 ($3,684,908), becoming the highest-grossing Filipino film of 2007, and the fourth highest-grossing film of 2007 in the Philippines, behind Spider-Man 3, Transformers and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.[4] The film also won Molina the Movie Director of the Year trophy in the 2008 PMPC Star Awards for Movies.[5]

A Very Special Love (2008)[edit]

Main article: A Very Special Love

In 2008, Molina directed A Very Special Love, a romantic comedy film which talks about Laida Magtalas (portrayed by Sarah Geronimo) who is a fresh graduate and applies for a job in a magazine publishing company owned by Miggy Montenegro (played by John Lloyd Cruz). Laida is a simple girl and is the breadwinner of her family, while Miggy is a rich, handsome businessman. The movie is about two young people with totally different backgrounds, but they discover that love truly knows no barriers.[6] It is the first film of Cruz and Geronimo together, after their successful team-up in an episode of the Maalaala Mo Kaya TV series entitled "Kwintas".[6] The film was released as part of Star Cinema's fifteenth anniversary, in collaboration with VIVA Films.[7] It marked the first project that Molina has worked with Geronimo. Molina expressed that people knew Geronimo for being a dramatic actress, based on the TV series she has appeared on, and that she wanted to show the lightness of the actress. She described Geronimo as "light and kikay," saying that it was easy to work with her.[8] A Very Special Love was rated A by the CEB, with its comedic and innocent concept in contrast to One More Chance.[9] The film earned ₱58,448,223 at the box-office in its opening weekend.[10] It became a commercial success, grossing a total of ₱179,569,117 ($3,836,701) and becoming the highest-grossing Filipino film of 2008 (second highest-grossing film of 2008 in the Philippines behind Iron Man).[11] The film later overtook Ang Tanging Ina in terms of revenue, and is currently the fifth highest-grossing Filipino film of all time. It also earned Molina three Best Director nominations from major awarding organizations.[12]

You Changed My Life (2009)[edit]

Main article: You Changed My Life

In 2009, Star Cinema and VIVA Films released the much-awaited sequel to A Very Special Love, entitled You Changed My Life.[13] The film was rushed, since the production companies wanted the sequel to have a Valentine's Day release. The film was directed, still, by Molina, with John Lloyd Cruz and Sarah Geronimo reprising their roles. Rayver Cruz was cast as Mackoy, Laida's high school best friend who later broke away for their group and went to a different college. The story revolves around the growing relationship of Miggy and Laida as a couple. Things get tough when Miggy was assigned to manage his family's business in Laguna far from Laida. Having no time for his girl, Laida finds comfort in Mackoy's arms. Like its prequel, the film was also rated A by the CEB and received positive reviews from movie critics. Karen A. Pagsolingan of Philippine Entertainment Portal stated "I have two words for the movie: Entertaining and engaging!" She described the plot as "flawless," and praised Molina's surprises and "avant garde tactics."[14] You Changed My Life earned ₱97,893,449 in its opening weekend, becoming the highest opening weekend for a Filipino film.[15] The film was a box-office hit, grossing a total of ₱230,436,128 ($4,724,411) and eventually becoming the highest-grossing Filipino film in record time.[16] It is also the first Filipino film to surpass the ₱200 million mark, after Ruel S. Bayani's No Other Woman did the same in 2011. You Changed My Life was the highest-grossing Filipino film of 2009 and the fifth highest-grossing film of 2009 in the Philippines behind Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Avatar, The Twilight Saga: New Moon and 2012.[17] The film earned Molina a Best Director nomination from the 2010 ENPRESS Golden Screen Awards.[18]

Miss You Like Crazy (2010)[edit]

In 2010, Molina's fifth project with John Lloyd Cruz and third with Bea Alonzo, entitled Miss You Like Crazy, was released under Star Cinema. Like One More Chance, the film is a romantic drama with a mature concept. Cruz and Alonzo played the roles of star-crossed lovers, Alan Alvarez and Mia Samonte. Fate throws them chances to be together, but time is not their ally. When they first meet on board the Pasig River Ferry Service, they are instantly attracted to each other. Both of them are from the middle-class and are down-to-earth. As they bond over Divisoria shopping and all-night conversations over coffee, Allan starts to doubt his feelings for his high maintenance fiancée Daphne (portrayed by Maricar Reyes) who happens to be the daughter of his boss. Sooner, Alan and Mia learn that "time is meaningless when you're in love."[19] The film was shot both in the Philippines and Malaysia.[20] The performance of the cast was praised by critics, but the story was panned film reviewers. Philippine Entertainment Portal stated "Star Cinema's weakness is its inability to produce a realistic ending [...] this perfect world only exists in fairy tales. In the real world, the more prevailing concepts are moving on and acceptance."[19] The same opinion was given by Manila Bulletin, saying "A Cathy Molina film always ends happily, although one would probably hope it wouldn’t, for a change, and adhere to a bit of realism [...] Another problem was the unexplored subplots."[21] Despite mixed response to the film, Miss You Like Crazy became a commercial hit, grossing a total of ₱138.27 million ($3,183,529) in the box-office[22] and becoming the second highest-grossing Filipino film of 2010 only behind My Amnesia Girl, which also stars Cruz in the lead role.[23]

Personal life[edit]

Catherine Rosales Garcia-Molina was born on November 28, 1971 in Quezon City, Philippines. She is the youngest child of the late Sikatuna Antonio Garcia (1929—1983) and Luisa Rosales Garcia.

She was married to Engineer and Technical Director Philip Rey "Epoy" Molina (who died from a vehicular accident in 2009) with two children.[24]


Molina often casts certain actors more than once in her films. She has consistently worked with Bea Alonzo, Sarah Geronimo, Toni Gonzaga, Sam Milby and John Lloyd Cruz.

Actor Close to You (2006) You Are the One (2006) You Got Me! (2007) One More Chance (2007) A Very Special Love (2008) My Only Ü (2008) You Changed My Life (2009) Miss You Like Crazy (2010) My Amnesia Girl (2010) Forever and a Day (2011) ÜnOfficially Yours (2012) It Takes A Man And A Woman (2013) Four Sisters and a Wedding (2013) She's Dating the Gangster (2014)
Bea Alonzo YesY YesY YesY YesY
KC Concepcion YesY
John Lloyd Cruz YesY YesY YesY YesY1 YesY2 YesY YesY YesY YesY2
Sarah Geronimo YesY YesY2 YesY2
Toni Gonzaga YesY YesY YesY YesY YesY
Angel Locsin YesY3 YesY YesY
Derek Ramsay YesY
Vhong Navarro YesY
Zanjoe Marudo YesY
Sam Milby YesY YesY YesY YesY YesY
Enchong Dee YesY
Shaina Magdayao YesY
Daniel Padilla YesY
Kathryn Bernardo YesY
  • 1 Cruz made a cameo appearance in My Only Ü.
  • 2 Cruz and Geronimo reprised their roles as Miggy Montenegro and Laida Magtalas.
  • 3 Locsin made a cameo appearance in My Amnesia Girl.



Year Film Role Notes and Awards
1993 Bulag, Pipi at Bingi Assistant director
1993 Maricris Sioson: Japayuki Assistant director
1994 Maalaala Mo Kaya: The Movie Assistant director
1994 Separada Assistant director
1995 Patayin sa Sindak si Barbara Assistant director, post-production coordinator
1995 Basta't Kasama Kita Assistant director
1995 Eskapo Assistant director, crowd director
1996 Madrasta Assistant director
1996 Mara Clara: The Movie Assistant director
1997 Hanggang Kailan Kita Mamahalin? Assistant director
1997 Paano Ang Puso Ko? Assistant director
1998 Lea's Story Assistant director
1998 Magandang Hatinggabi Associate director
2000 Minsan, Minahal Kita Associate director
2002 Got 2 Believe Associate director
2004 Milan Associate director
2004 Bcuz of U Director Episode "Third Story"
2006 Close to You Director
2006 You Are the One Director Nominated—PMPC Star Award for Movie Director of the Year
2007 You Got Me! Director
2007 One More Chance Director GMMSF Box-Office Entertainment Award for Film Director of the Year
PMPC Star Award for Movie Director of the Year
2008 A Very Special Love Director GMMSF Box-Office Entertainment Award for Film Director of the Year
Nominated—ENPRESS Golden Screen Award for Best Director
Nominated—FAP Luna Award for Best Director
Nominated—PMPC Star Award for Movie Director of the Year
2008 My Only Ü Director
2009 You Changed My Life Director GMMSF Box-Office Entertainment Award for Film Director of the Year
Nominated—ENPRESS Golden Screen Award for Best Director
2009 In My Life Second associate director
2010 Miss You Like Crazy Director
2010 Cinco Director Episode "Puso"
2010 My Amnesia Girl Director
2011 Forever and a Day Director
2012 ÜnOfficially Yours Director
2013 It Takes a Man and a Woman Director
2013 Four Sisters and a Wedding Director
2014 She's Dating the Gangster Director


Year Title Role Notes
2002—2009 Maalaala Mo Kaya Director 6 episodes
2006 Wansapanataym Director Episode "Ang Alamat ng Pinya"
2008 Lobo Director
2009 Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Bud Brothers Director
2009 Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Somewhere in My Heart Director
2010 Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Midnight Phantom Director
2010 Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Alyna Director
2013 Got to Believe Director
2014 Pinoy Big Brother: All In Houseguest/Herself/Director Directed the short film Endless[25]
(starring the Housemates)

Cameo appearances[edit]

Year Film Role
1990 Bikining Itim Tale
1990 Biktima Rape victim
1990 Inosente Young Hostess
1995 Basta't Kasama Kita Chambermaid
2004 Milan Pinoy 1
2009 In My Life Ballroom host


Year Award-Giving Body Category Work Result
2008 GMMSF Box-Office Entertainment Awards Most Popular Film Director[26] One More Chance Won
2009 Most Popular Film Director[27] A Very Special Love Won
2010 Film Director of the Year[28] You Changed My Life Won


  1. ^ Mario E. Bautista. "Direk Cathy breaks away from the mold". The Philippine Star. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  2. ^ Marinel Cruz (2007-11-18). "‘One More Chance’ gets a ‘B’". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  3. ^ "One More Chance - Business". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  4. ^ "Philippines Yearly Box Office - 2007". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  5. ^ "One More Chance - Awards". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  6. ^ a b Rachelle Marie Gutierrez Dangin (July 23, 2008). "John Lloyd Cruz and Sarah Geronimo share a very special love". The Philippine Star. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  7. ^ Jocelyn Dimaculangan (July 24, 2008). "Office romance highlighted in "A Very Special Love"". pep,ph. Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  8. ^ Jocelyn Dimaculangan (July 9, 2008). "John Lloyd and Sarah excited about their movie "A Very Special Love"". Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  9. ^ Ricky Lo (September 16, 2008). "A very special premiere in NY". The Philippine Star. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  10. ^ "A Very Special Love - Business". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  11. ^ "Philippines Yearly Box Office - 2008". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  12. ^ "A Very Special Love - Awards". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  13. ^ Karen A. Pagsolingan (March 2, 2009). "John Lloyd Cruz-Sarah Geronimo tandem and their success formula". Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  14. ^ Karen A. Pagsolingan (February 25, 2009). "PEP REVIEW: "You changed my life"". Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  15. ^ "You Changed My Life gross total". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  16. ^ "You Changed My Life gross total". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  17. ^ "Philippines Yearly Box Office - 2009". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  18. ^ "You Changed My Life - Awards". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  19. ^ a b Fidel Antonio Medel (February 26, 2010). "Top reasons to love Miss You Like Crazy". Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  20. ^ CRISPINA MARTINEZ-BELEN (February 23, 2010). "John Lloyd, Bea reunite via ‘Miss You Like Crazy’". Manila Bulletin. Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  21. ^ ROWENA JOY A. SANCHEZ (February 25, 2010). "'Miss You Like Crazy': Satisfying fan fodder but...". Manila Bulletin. Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  22. ^ "Miss You Like Crazy". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  23. ^ "Philippines Yearly Box Office - 2010". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2011-07-18. 
  24. ^ Erwin Santiago (March 29, 2009). "Director Cathy Garcia Molina's husband killed in a vehicular accident - The Number One Site for Philippine Showbiz". 
  25. ^ "Direk Cathy plays hard ball with housemates". Star Cinema. ABS-CBN. August 17, 2014. Retrieved August 17, 2014. 
  26. ^ "The 38th Box-Office Entertainment Awards (Part 2)". Retrieved 2014-05-24.
  27. ^ "40th Box Office Entertainment Awards given out". Retrieved 2014-05-21.
  28. ^ "ABS-CBN big winner at GMMSF Entertainment Awards". ABS-CBN News. Retrieved 2014-05-21.

External links[edit]