For this Spanish actor, the world is his stage | Inquirer Entertainment

For this Spanish actor, the world is his stage

Fifteen years after working with Guillermo del Toro and Pedro Almodovar, Andreas Muñoz plays the founder of the Society of Jesus
/ 08:02 AM May 08, 2016

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Spanish actor Andreas Muñoz, who plays Ignacio de Loyola in the biopic of the founder of the Jesuit order, says he loves sisig, lechon and pancit.

Spanish actor Andreas Muñoz has always made it his goal to be a globe-trotting actor—working in international productions in countries near and far.

His latest adventure has brought him to the Philippines, where he was cast as the titular hero of the historic epic, “Ignacio de Loyola,” directed by Filipino Paolo Dy and produced by Jesuit Communications.


He last visited Manila in November 2015 to film some scenes in a local studio. (Most of the film was shot in Spain.) He returned to Manila recently to meet the press and dub the film, which opens in cinemas in July.


By Muñoz’s own admission, he has become an adopted Filipino throughout the filming process. For starters, Filipino cuisine now tops his list. “I love sisig, lechon, pancit. I am crazy over mangoes!”

He acknowledged that Spaniards and Filipinos have a slew of similarities that go beyond our common history as a people. “We’re both very open and flexible,” he pointed out. “We are positive and optimistic as a people. Everyone is complaining about the heat, but I love it here. Back in London, where I live, it’s snowing.”

He has also learned a smattering of Filipino words—to add to his repertoire of languages. (He speaks Spanish, English, French and understands Portuguese and Italian).

Interestingly, he has learned a few naughty Filipino words, along with the basics (“Mahal kita” or “I love you,” and “Salamat” or “Thank you.”)

“I love learning new languages,” he told the Inquirer.

Even as a youngster, he dreamt of acting in various productions all over the world. “That was why I studied at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow,” he related. “It was my dream to work in Europe, Asia…wherever life would take me. You get to learn a lot from different cultures and countries.”


Although he was already a working actor who had appeared in numerous movies and TV shows, he still felt compelled to go back to school.

“I wanted to pick up additional skills,” he explained. “To learn how to use my body and my voice…how to speak clearly—and to acquire the discipline of classically trained theater actors.”

The three years he had spent taking fencing lessons served him well during the shoot of “Ignacio de Loyola” last year.

“The early years of my character as a soldier required sword-fighting and horse-back riding skills,” he remarked.

To prepare for the part, he did tons of research. “I read Ignacio’s life story. I visited museums. I interviewed Jesuit priests, too.”

He has nothing but praise for his Filipino director Dy. “He is very talented. He was in control of the material and knew everything about the story. He has a bright future ahead of him.”

The life of Ignacio has taught him the lessons of perseverance, he admitted. “I’ve become calmer, more patient. Everyone is in a rush these days. I’ve learned to be more introspective…more careful about things.”

He seems to be a young man in a hurry.

After all, he started as a child star and, at age 9, worked with Oscar-nominated director Guillermo del Toro in “The Devil’s Backbone,” which was produced by Oscar-winning filmmaker Pedro Almodovar.

He described Almodovar as “humble and down-to-earth”; Del Torro as “a genius and a perfectionist.”

He relished recalling his daring stunt on the set of “The Devil’s Backbone,” where he played a “porcelain ghost.” “I volunteered to dive into a swimming pool, without scuba gear.”

The derring-do would undoubtedly make child-labor advocates see red, but the gung-ho kid pulled it off. “Guillermo was so happy. He told me that he’d give me anything in exchange…So I asked that my name be billed twice in the film’s credits: as an actor and stuntman!”

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Looking back, he mused, “I should have asked to be the lead actor in all his films!”

TAGS: Andreas Muñoz, Ignacio de Loyola, Movies

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