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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Jun 20, 2012

TV5's Artista Academy Auditions At The Big Dome Attracted 10,500 Applicants

WE WERE invited to the Artista Academy auditions at Araneta Coliseum last Tuesday and TV5’s entertainment head Perci Intalan is very pleased with the huge turnout. There were about 10,500 applicants that filled up the big dome, making all the writers invited to the affair conclude: “Ang dami talagang gustong mag-artista dreaming of overnight fame and fortune.”

Some came with their parents. Some already have their own managers. Some have faces only their moms can love.

“Some even come from the provinces like Cebu, Bohol and Mindoro,” says Perci. “They really travelled to Manila to join as we have no auditions in the provinces at dahil daw sa laki ng prizes namin amounting to P20 million.”

The applicants undergo through three screenings. First is the registration, then they are told to go up by batches on the stage in the middle of the coliseum where their faces are flashed on giant TV screens. Screening them starting at 2 PM were Wilma Galvante of Asian Academy of TV Arts, Regal producer Roselle Monteverde and the casting director of Leo Burnett ad agency.

At 6 PM, Roselle left and was replaced by Direk Mac Alejandre. Those who pass this screen test then go to the next level for a personal interview. From all the applicants, only 300 will be chosen as semi-finalists. They will then undergo closer scrutiny and only 16 finalists will be chosen, 8 boy and 8 girls. Two will win: one best actor and one best actress.

Among those we saw, only a handful have that incandescent something called star quality. Some look good, but it’s not the movie star kind of good looks. One writer quips: “Yung iba, napadaan lang yata’t inutusan mamalengke sa Farmer’s, tapos nag-audition na. Marami, mas dapat mag-apply na caregiver o mutya, mutyatya.”

We notice there are better looking boys than girls. Most of them are half-breeds, like Fil-Brit Andrew Capati Brown (managed by Neil de Guia), Fil-Croatian Mark Phillip Newman (this one is really a future heartthrob) and Fil-Italian Jonathan Orlando (managed by Leo Dominguez).

Among the qualified Filipino-looking guys are Benjo Leoncio from Cebu (managed by Jonas Gaffud of Mercator) and Paulo Fargas (managed by Neil de Guia.) Among the girls, only one stood out for us, Kriz Nuqui. She’s so lovely and sexy we hope she makes it.

A surprise applicant is Angelo Patrimonio, the son of Alvin P who was once a member of Star Magic. “I left ABS-CBN kasi nagtapos muna ko ng college sa St. Benilde,” he says. “Now, I’m managed by Neil de Guia and he made me apply here.”

There’s also the younger brother of Gerald Anderson, Kenneth, who’s a balikbayan from the USA, but we’re afraid he doesn’t have the charisma of his Kuya Gege.

Perci says they expect to present the 16 finalists by July 16. The Monday to Friday telecast showing them undergo various acting challenges will be hosted by Marvin Agustin. The live weekend showing the elimination of the contestants will be hosted by Cesar Montano who came home from the U.S. just for this and was formally introduced last Sunday as the newest Kapatid member in “Game N Go”.