Here's the latest:
Melody will be featured as Tita Yvonne in Amblin and Rideback's Easter Sunday. The movie is based on the life and experiences of comedian, Jo Koy.
"Starting production on Easter Sunday is the culmination of a lifetime of dreaming and decades of hard work," said Koy. "It's especially meaningful that we've been able to assemble such an incredible group of diverse and talented filmmakers and comedians to bring this slice of Filipino culture to the world." Also joining the cast were Eva Noblezada, Brandon Wardell, Tia Cerrere, Eugene Cordero, Asif Ali, Lou Diamond Phillips, Lydia Gaston, Rodney To, Joey Guila, and Elena Juatco. Easter Sunday is scheduled for a wide release from Universal and Amblin on August 5th, 2022. Check out the trailer!
Melody participated in the 9th Annual Filipino Hollywood Actors Panel, produced by Edwin A Santos and moderated by Ed Mallillin. It was a wonderful afternoon sharing stories and experiences with Carolyn Fe (Blue's Clues and You!) and Martha Millan (Fox's The Cleaning Lady). Presented by the Filipino American Chamber or Commerce of Hollywood, the panel allows participants to dive into the craft of acting across the board while shining a spotlight towards Filipino American actors in Hollywood today. Check out the panel discussion here
Melody provided additional voices in the upcoming animated special, Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed: The Underground Rock Experience!, coming to HBOMax June 30th. Wilbur J. Molerat the Naked Mole Rat discovers clothes and pictures a world where he can dress how he wants. Starring Jordan Fisher, Carol Kane, Yvette Nicole Brown, Kate Micucci, Thomas Lennon, Kevin Michael Richardson, Jenna Ushkowitz, Ron Funches, and more. Catch a sneak peak here.
Melody revisited the role of Bloody Mary in South Pacific at Theatre Under the Stars in Houston, Texas, directed by Taibi Magar, with choreography by Courtney D. Jones, and Musical Direction by Stephen W. Jones. Timelier than ever, this Pulitzer Prize-winning musical proves that even the backdrop of a tropical paradise cannot shelter its residents from the prejudices of the time. South Pacific is the winner of 10 Tony Awards®, including Best Musical. Click here for the Broadway World cast announcement.
While in Houston, Melody was asked to be part of a panel of theatre artists, discussing how we approach problematic material in American Theatre classics for "Town Square" on Houston Public Media, hosted by Ernie Manouse. Click here to listen.
Melody returned to South Coast Repertory Theatre to ring in the holiday spirit in 2021 with A Christmas Carol, this time, in the role of Mrs. Fezziwig! From the first “Bah humbug” to the final “Wassail,” this timeless classic returned to holiday spirits. It featured all your favorite Dickens characters—Tiny Tim and the Cratchit family, the Fezziwigs, the Ghosts of Christmas past, present and yet-to-come, and of course, everyone’s favorite curmudgeon, Ebenezer Scrooge, portrayed by SCR Founding Member Richard Doyle.
Prior to the pandemic, Melody reunited with director Seema Sueko in the world premiere production of Right To Be Forgotten by Sharyn Rothstein at Arena Stage in Washington D.C.
"As Marta, Butiu dominates the show with her humor, bombast, and passion. Her quick rejoiners and faith in Derril and the cause immediately endear her to the audience...Butiu imbibes the character with such charisma and passion, that the audience's adoration is inevitable. Marta is smart, resourceful, and ideological, and willing to take on the herculean task of challenging Big Tech - all with a smile, a witty remark, and an incredible facial expression."--BroadwayWorld.com
Order the HERE LIES LOVE original cast album! Released by Nonesuch Records, it includes an 80-page full color book with lyrics, credits, and two essays by David Byrne about the creation of the piece. To order and listen to sample tracks, click HERE. Also available on Spotify and iTunes.
Melody stars as Mary in Untold: This is My Story, which had its world premiere at the TCL Chinese Theater on September 6, 2021. Several years in the making, Writer/Director Gina M. Garcia tells her inspiring true story in her feature film debut of the crime that triggered disturbing flashbacks to her childhood traumas, causing her to seek treatment for P.T.S.D. within the V.A. system. Gina's journey for the truth implodes her family and nearly takes her life. Also starring: Terri Ivens, Jennifer Rubin, Carlos Gomez and Civil Rights Attorney Gloria Allred. It is an official selection of the Dances With Films: LA Festival and Cinema Diverse Festival in Palm Springs. The film was picked up by Freestyle Digital Media to be released on VOD platforms on April 19. News on this here. For more information on the film and screening dates and cities, click here.
Melody plays Tala Navarro in Swearing, a short film by Mary Bronaugh. Ninabelle Navarro is a spirited young Filipino woman whose sheltered perspective is obliterated by a chaotic first week of college. Accidentally recruited for the campus comedy troupe, Nina will discover a world where provoking god is a prerequisite - and she'll let loose the surprisingly loud and angry voice inside her. This Filipino-American coming-of-age story is part of Film Independent's Artist Development Program. Check it out the trailer.
The Patients, a short film by Tess Paras, was an official selection at the 2019 LA Asian Pacific Film Festival. After a “bad fight” with her boyfriend, Filipina-American party girl Regina Ramos ends up in the ER where her Dad works. When her family rushes to her aid, they stumble to connect as a trending topic becomes a real-life issue that affects them all. Written and directed by Tess Paras, and starring Tess Paras, Jon Jon Briones, Eugene Cordero, Melody Butiu, Josephine De Jesus, Lilan Bowden, Haneefah Wood. Check out the film's trailer, to the left. It was part of the festival's "I Gotchu Fam, Always," program at Downtown Independent on May 5th, 2019. The Patients was also an official selection of the Bend Film Festival.