May 24, 2018, 2:17 pm
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Atom Araullo admits the shift to acting wasn’t easy

Playing the title role in veteran director Mike De Leon’s latest film Citizen Jake is a big privilege according to Atom Araullo. “I feel very lucky kasi I grew up watching a lot of Mike’s films like Kisapmata, Batch 81, and Kakabakaba so alam ko na maraming aktor at nagtratrabaho sa pelikula ang gusto siyang makatrabaho. Kaya parang I feel very lucky being almost an outsider to begin in this position,” he shared during the Citizen Jake special screening held last March 10 at the UP Film Institute in Quezon city. 

He further shared the challenges he faced making the movie. “Maraming mga bahaging mahirap. There are a lot of very challenging scenes. I think it’s a very challenging role, especially for a newcomer like me. In the beginning, I kind of thought I could just be myself, kasi ‘yung character isang reporter, so sabi ko alam ko naman ang feeling ng isang reporter so baka madalian na ako. Pero hindi pala, dahil napaka-complex na character ni Jake Herrera at marami siyang pinagdaanan na mahirap intindihin. Mahirap humanap ng hugot. So I just tried my best,” he related.

As a respected TV reporter, Atom said going into full-blown acting was a risk for him. “People might not understand why I would do such a project, especially since my career is as a journalist and the two worlds aren’t necessarily connected or they very seldom overlap. So I’ve heard it asked many times before even from my friends, why did I do this? Some people really don’t understand, but I tend to weigh things very carefully and it still feels like I made the right decision in engaging in this project,” he said.

Atom admitted he still has a lot to learn when it comes to acting. “If only because I’m entering a field which I have no knowledge of. I acted a little bit when I was in grade school and high school in theater, but that feels like a lifetime ago. And to be thrust into cinema with such great talent and being expected to carry the film in a capacity of a lead actor, that’s a heavy burden. And the greatest fear I suppose is failing – obviously, not being able to deliver as an actor. But more than that, it’s also apprehension.”

The journalist has become more open about accepting other offers to act because of his experience on “Citizen Jake” both as actor and scriptwriter. 

“Citizen Jake” will be shown on March 13 at UP Cine Adarna with tickets priced at P150 each available at the UP Film Institute Media Center located beside Plaridel hall. Gates open at 6 p.m., screening at 7 p.m.

***

In her first time to direct Gerald Anderson in Star Cinema’s latest romantic comedy “My Perfect You,” director Cathy Garcia-Molina admitted she wasn’t immediately impressed with the actor. “I have always been honest to everyone. Sa sobrang pagiging honest minsan nakaka-offend na ako. But then, I talked to my stars and they know from the very start, sabi ko kay Gerald, ‘Ge, alam mo naman na hindi ako naga-guwapuhan sa ‘yo,’” she revealed during the “My Perfect You” press con last March 10 in ABS-CBN.

The director admitted her tough love approach to her stars isn’t always easy to take but it eventually pays off in the end. 

“I think it’s always good when I don’t like my actors because it turns out always at the end of the movie that I get to like them. In fact, I love them. Si Gerald [Anderson], sobra! Tinapak-tapakan ko ang ego ng taong ito. Wala ng preno ang bibig ko. All for one intention – I want to bring out who Gerald really is or maybe what else he can give. And siyempre, lalake, ang hirap ng ego, it’s getting in the way. But I admire him for allowing me na tapakan siya at rendahan. Finally, may isang sequence na sabi ko, ‘Oy, pogi ka na dun!’ Partida ito pa yung gulo gulo buhok niya,” she explained.

It was halfway through filming “My Perfect You” when she said she was surprised by Gerald’s acting. “Grabe ang effort niya, naging double. So ‘yung ending, take one. Tapos habang nanunuod ako, nakita ko si John Lloyd [Cruz]. I think it’s a sincere performance that I only get from a John Lloyd Cruz. In fairness naman, hindi ko alam kung good thing or bad thing sa kanya ‘yun, but to me, it means I saw a sincere performance. And to me ‘yun na ‘yun. Sabi ko sa kanya, ‘Pag ikaw bumalik pa sa acting mong ewan, lagot ka sa akin!’” she said with a laugh.

***

Matteo Guidicelli is thankful for all the feedback the pilot week of their primetime fantasy series “Bagani” has been receiving. Although the show became controversial, it successfully opened to high ratings on March 5.

In an interview, he acknowledged both the positive and negative comments the show has been receiving from viewers. “This soap, everybody around it, they work very, very hard for it since last year, since the year before that. Talagang pinaghandaan talaga ‘to, pinag-isipan talaga and it’s a big soap and it’s a big effort for everybody. We’re proud of it. Me, personally, I’m very proud of this soap because it’s one of a kind. It’s a huge thing. It’s beautiful, kumbaga.”

Even Vice Ganda had good things to say about the show on Twitter. How did his girlfriend Sarah Geronimo find it?

“Yeah, she likes it. I mean she hasn’t seen it on TV but she saw some snippets online and she likes it also. I think everybody na mapapanood nila ‘yung first day, second day or ‘yung pilot, kumbaga, first day pa lang, makikita mo talaga na sobrang laki ng soap. ‘Yung mga shots pa lang, very big,” he said, adding the series is definitely the fruit of hard work.

As for his role as Lakam, Matteo described him as an artist who has a lot of angst. “[He’s] Trying to prove to his dad, trying to prove to his whole region na kaya niyang maging leader. So the character of Lakam is a little complex because he’s always trying to prove something. He can’t always be himself… As the soap goes, makikita niyo ‘yung iba’t ibang challenges ni Lakam.”

He also said that fight scenes are also challenging, given that a 30-second to one-minute sequence takes about a whole day to make. Nonetheless, he said they love what they do and find it fun.
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