‘Huwag ipilit’: Alden on why ‘AlDub’ opted to go their separate ways
For any writer interested in popular stars’ upcoming projects, nothing beats hearing much-anticipated information about an eagerly awaited production straight from the horse’s mouth.
So, when we joined Alden Richards and Bea Alonzo’s recent Kapuso Mall Show in Cebu, among the hot topics that were confirmed to us by the stars themselves were the exciting developments surrounding Bea’s upcoming reunion film with John Lloyd Cruz under director Cathy Garcia-Molina for Star Cinema and, as Alden himself revealed, an AlDub reunion project with erstwhile love team partner Maine Mendoza.
Both productions in are various stages of development, so there isn’t much they could say about them, except that, yes, they’re in the pipeline.
In an exclusive chat arranged by GMA Network’s dynamic Regional, CorpComm and Sparkle teams, we spoke to Bea and Alden about the impending finale this Friday of “Start-Up PH,” the local adaptation of the 2020 K-drama series they currently costar in.
We ended up talking beyond creating character or dealing with the fear of living up to rabid K-drama fans’ expectations. We also asked them why both the John Lloyd-Bea and AlDub romantic juggernauts just never seemed to cross over from reel to real. (Follow this section for Bea’s thought-provoking and intelligent musings about her life, love and career choices.)
For Alden, embodying the characters that he creates on-screen also helps him figure out the difficult decisions he must make in life.
He explained, “When we essay these roles or react to the situations our characters are in, we’re compelled to go back to ourselves and wonder how we would react if these situations happened to us. So, sometimes, when faced with hard choices, I ask myself, ‘What would Tristan (his character in the series) do?’
A learning journey
“There’s like a cue that tells an actor it’s time to immerse himself in the character he’s playing, and we forget ourselves thereafter. But after the director shouts, ‘Cut,’ we don’t just forget about the scenes we finished—because part of the character stays with you.
“I’ve had my fair share of roles, and so does Bea. Given the variety of characters I’ve played since I began my career as an actor, there have been a lot of difficult choices that my characters had to make that I will never choose to do.
“But each role has specific attributes similar to mine. Parts of my characters, like Tisoy in ‘One True Love’ or Ethan in ‘Hello, Love, Goodbye’ or Tristan in ‘Start-Up,’ are also in me. For us actors, we liken living under the skin of our characters as a learning journey.
“You learn more about yourself by bringing your characters to life. And you go, ‘Ah, so this is what I’ll do if something like this happens to me!’ Unknown to many, maraming revelations ang nangyayari sa buhay ng isang aktor based on the roles he plays and the projects he appears in.”
Alden said that bringing his character’s emotions and motivations to life is an extension of his own emotions and motivations. “It’s like extending yourself beyond what you would normally do [to find your character’s truth],” he pointed out. “You can magnify small aspects of your personality to do your role justice. Ako kasi, naniniwala that each person’s unique self can be gleaned from the different aspects of his personality. It’s up to you to fine-tune the details that you need to utilize as an actor.
“That’s what I learned from the Eric Morris workshop that I attended. When you ‘extend’ particular aspects of yourself, it’s like adjusting the volume of a music player. Itataas mo lang this side of your personality, as needed. But you also have to be careful not to overdo it because there’s a thin line between sanity and insanity (laughs).”
We asked Alden why he thought his partnership with Maine never breached the line from professional to personal? What made the love team tick and click, despite the lack of real-life romance?
In an attempt to answer the question, Alden ended up negating what some netizens were saying about, among others, his “inability to address the issues” or their perception of the actor to stay on the fence.
Alden explained, “Everything that people saw about AlDub was organic … that’s what we wanted to show. We didn’t have a script for that whole ‘Kalyeserye’ thing, so Maine and I just played along with it.
“But none of what Maine and I said was orchestrated or planned ahead, except perhaps the gist of the Lolas’ jokes and what they’re supposed to do. Everything was based on impulse or improvisation, which probably explains why the story that developed felt so organic.
“Pero walang halong pretension ‘yun … hindi namin niloko ang mga sarili namin. So, when we saw each other for the first time, it really was our first time to meet in person, kaya nga it was called ‘Tamang Panahon.’
“Eventually, what Maine and I both wanted became clear to us. I had my own plans, and Maine had plans of her own. Minsan, hindi mo puwedeng i-align ang plano mo sa plano ng iba kasi iba-iba kayo ng direction (we wanted to pursue different directions). Huwag ipilit or baka you’ll end up fighting or having a misunderstanding. So, we opted to go our separate ways as friends.” When we asked Alden how he protects himself from all the noise and the negative aspects of fandom or social media, the actor remained soft-spoken and kind but resolute.
He said, “Sa dami ng pinagdaanan ko, from AlDub till today … or even way before I started my career as an actor, masyado nang makapal ang resistance ko [sa lahat ng ‘yan]. When I was just starting out, every bad write-up or negative feedback would really affect me. “But with time, I just got used to it … and I became numb to what the naysayers would say. You can’t plead to them not to drag this or that aspect of your life into the controversies, or leave your family or loved ones out of them. Pero mangyayari at mangyayari ‘yun.
“You eventually realize na makakanti talaga sila … because you’re a public figure and everyone in your circle becomes part of that public sphere. It becomes a matter of simply knowing how to manage them. But in my case, wala nang effect sa akin whatever they say.” INQ