Now comes the hard partBy Nestor U. Torre
Philippine Daily Inquirer
After months of intense training and competition, GMA 7’s “Protégé” star discovery tilt finally named its two winners last Sunday—Jeric Gonzales and Thea Tolentino. Now comes the even tougher part—to turn them into actual rather than merely promising stars who will grace the network’s TV and film productions for many productive years!
We trust that the network won’t fall short of that objective—otherwise, the time and expense poured into the “Protégé” star discovery process shall have been for naught.
To their credit, both Jeric and Thea have shown by way of their weekly performances on “Protégé” that they have what it takes to compete with other noteworthy newbies for the rare privilege of sustained stardom.
Quite a number of young talents do get to star in one or two TV-film productions, but only a few get to do it on a fairly regular basis—which is the real meaning of show biz “stardom.”
Indeed, becoming a real star takes much more than the standard combination of being “beautiful and dutiful,” it takes consistent ambition and determination, and above all the strong and unique personality and charisma that makes a new talent really stand out.
For instance, the minute Robin Padilla unveiled his “Bad Boy” persona on the big screen, young action film buffs and their palpitating girlfriends were hooked—and Robin’s signature scowling persona is still popular today, 20 years after the fact.
We note, however, that as of now, neither Jeric nor Thea have the “uniqueness” factor working for them. Indeed, they’re acceptably and reliably proficient, but their performances in the “Protégé” tilt weren’t what you’d call charismatic or inspired.
Well, some new lead players have done OK with even less going for them, so it definitely isn’t “hello-goodbye” for Thea and Jeric. They simply have to understand that, if they stay at the “acceptable” and “proficient” level, they won’t really come into their own as compelling onscreen personalities.
They now need to dig even deeper into their personas as performers and people to discover and intensify their defining uniqueness and passion. Given how competitive and overcrowded show biz has become, less than that just won’t do!
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