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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.

Feb 10, 2016

Richard Gutierrez Feels Pressure On Being The New Flavio In TV5's Version Of 'Ang Panday' And Prepared So Hard For The Role

RICHARD GUTIERREZ has been absent from acting for two years now. He's now back in the latest reincarnation of "Ang Panday" that starts airing on Monday, February 29 at 8 PM and will later be seen in succeeding days after the PBA Games.

“When I got the call asking if I could do ‘Panday’, I felt it’s the right time,” he says. “It’s the kind of project you can’t say no to. Sabay kaming magbabalik ni Flavio. It’s an honor to be chosen to do a role originally played by the late FPJ. Siempre, may pressure dahil FPJ’s shoes are too big to fill in. But I’m also thanking Boss Vic of Viva, Direk Carlo Caparas and Direk Mac Alejandre sa tiwala nila sa akin. I promise to give them the best of me in this very big project. I had to prepare for it physically, emotionally and spiritually. I went to the gym and lost the weight I gained while I wasn’t acting.”

And he’s really now very buff with well defined biceps. Perfect for the Flavio role. “On our first taping day, I realized this is what I really enjoy doing in life, acting, and it’s so nice to be back.”

What’s the difference of Chard’s Panday to the other versions of the show? “Siempre, the original elements of Direk Carlo will be there kasi well loved na sila ng audience, including Lizardo,” says Direk Mac Alejandre. “But we’ve updated it for today’s audiences. There is a portal where the characters can do time travel from the past to the present. So makakarating sina Flavio sa modern times. And this time, Flavio has not just one but three leading ladies: Jasmine Curtis Smith, Bangs Garcia and Sam Pinto. Tutuhugin niya silang lahat with his magic sword.”

Won’t Chard’s significant other, Sarah Lahbati, get jealous? “No, we’re both professionals and she’s just happy that I got this kind of challenging project.”