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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.

Oct 7, 2019


ALDEN RICHARDS Is getting new movie offers after the huge success of “Hello Love Goodbye” but he opts to give his undivided attention to “The Gift”, his current primetime drama series on GMA Telebabad that continues to gain more and more viewers each night.

“Dito muna ang focus ko,” he says. “I don’t want to be distracted kasi ang ganda ng role ko as Sep. Very encouraging ang feedback from viewers here and abroad and the role has become more challenging for me now that my character has gone blind. Noong una, I didn’t feel the role was that demanding kasi panay lang ang pa-cute ko as a market vendor sa mga tao sa paligid ng palengke.

"But now na nabulag si Sep, naramdaman ko talaga kung gaano katindi ang pinagdaraanan niya and I told our director, L.A. Madridejos, na hindi ko kailangang umacting at all kasi napasok ko na nang buong-buo ang character ni Sep. Hindi siya madali, lalo sa dramatic scenes, kasi I’m wearing contact lenses at kapag kailangang umiyak, it’s like may nakaharang sa tear ducts ko. I really have to push myself para sa dramatic scenes.”

Viewers were vocal in their comments about his “mata-mata” kind of emoting, meaning he only uses his eyes and doesn’t rely on dialogue or make much acting effort at all to be effective. “I have to thank yung mga kasama ko sa cast kasi ang gagaling din nila, kaya I’m properly motivated,” he says.

“Lalo na si Tita Elizabeth Oropesa as my lola and Jo Berry as my adoptive mother. Also Mikoy Morales and Mikee Quintos as my very caring friends. Kapag sila ang kaeksena mo, there’s no way that you won’t be motivated to also give your best in your scenes with them.”

Now that he is blind, Sep also starts to see visions about the past and the future. “Sobrang nagtataka siya kunsaan nanggagaling ang mga yun. He’s asking why he’s having such mysterious moments in his life after he was shot in the head. He’s having a hard time figuring it out but in future episodes, lahat, mabibigyan ng linaw.

"At doon mas lalong gaganda ang istorya at we’re sure lalong hindi na bibitaw ang viewers sa panonood sa amin every night. Even my friends na dati, they don’t bother to watch, they are now all hooked dahil sa exciting flow ng narrative.”

What can he say now that “The Gift” has new competition after “General’s Daughter” has ended? “Okay lang po. We welcome the competition kasi it will inspire us para mas pagandahin ang bawat bagong episode ng ‘The Gift’. In the end, ang viewers ang makikinabang and they will be the one to make the choice as to which show ang panonoorin nila regularly.”