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Barbie not yet ready to lock lips with screen partner

Barbie Forteza

“This Time I’ll Be Sweeter,” the coming debut film of Barbie Forteza and Ken Chan’s “KenBie” love team, is touted as a “more mature” offering than their work in GMA 7’s rom-com series, “Meant to Be.”

But, that doesn’t necessarily mean their fans can expect to see kissing scenes.

“At least not on the lips!” quipped the 20-year-old actress, who confessed that she still isn’t ready to lock lips in front of the cameras. “But we made up for it by doing other things that generate kilig.”

It’s not that she doesn’t want to do it—Barbie just feels she still has a lot of growing up to do. “It’s too early. Maybe in three or five years’ time, and if I get the kind of material that calls for it. I’ll do it at the right age,” she told reporters.

“Bakit naman si Sarah [Geronimo]?” she said of her singer-actress idol, who didn’t do such scenes until later in her career.

In “This Time,” Barbie is Erika, a mass communications student who falls in and out of love with Tristan (Ken), a varsity swimmer. They cross paths again years later, as Erika—now a television reporter—is duty-bound to cover an accident involving Tristan’s family.

“Working with Ken was, as always, easy. He’s caring, thoughtful…and is competitive about it! If I buy him coffee, for instance, he would always return the favor. He’d buy me a bigger coffee!” Barbie related, adding that the success of “Meant to Be” doesn’t make her feel pressured about her film’s prospects.

“Thinking about that will only breed negativity. I hope our fans continue to support us,” she said.

Directed by Joel Lamangan, “This Time I’ll Be Sweeter” (in cinemas Nov. 8) touches on depression and suicide, which, as of late, have become prominent topics in local show biz. While Barbie has never dealt with depression, she hoped that those who do will find the strength to rise above it.

“I want to tell them that we have a long way to go; that there’s a whole life ahead of us,” she said. “I hope they seek professional help, or draw strength from their friends and loved ones.”

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