FPJ series not among reasons behind Lovi’s transfer to ABS-CBN
I want to have my own take on it,” said “FPJ’s Batang Quiapo” lead actress Lovi Poe of a character once played by Maricel Soriano in the movie version that also featured her late father, Fernando Poe Jr. (FPJ).
“I’ve already watched the movie before, but as part of my preparation for the series, I made sure to see it again. However, I don’t want to find myself copying Ms Maricel. Also, my character here is totally different from hers in terms of their respective life journeys,” she told reporters recently.
“When it comes to training, I’m currently into one, but I’m not allowed to elaborate on it yet. I’ve been doing this unique preparation even before we started taping for the show,” she added.
Asked to describe her character Mocha “Mokang” Dimaculangan, Lovi said: “The term we always use when talking about her is ‘bargas,’ especially in the way she speaks and moves. This comes naturally to me, too. Not many people know this, but I act according to how I’m dressed. When I’m wearing a gown or a dress, it’s like I’m playing a character. On the set, I always rely on my directors for guidance to make sure I’m consistent. The environment I work in helps a lot, too.”
When it was time to describe Coco Martin as a coactor, producer and director, Lovi had this to say: “He is such a caring person. He treats everyone on the set equally—that’s the one thing that I will never forget about him ever. I didn’t mean to observe him, but I couldn’t help it. I noticed how approachable he is. Anyone on the set can just come up to him if they have anything to ask.”
Lovi continued: “I’m amazed at how composed he is all the time, even though he is already tired because he is both the lead actor and the director. He is always ready to talk with his team. After doing scenes with him, I also noticed that he is such a natural at acting. Now, I kind of understand his style. He just enjoys what he is doing. When we exchange lines, it’s like I see Tanggol (Coco’s character) in flesh and blood. I enjoy that process, too.”
Lovi then compared her career path to Coco’s. “He said he started with doing indies. Those were the kind of movies I did when I was starting as an actress, too. I think this is why we have a similar process when it comes to acting. It feels good that I’m now doing this project and that he is my leading man. I’m excited to know what we’ll do together for the show in the coming days, because, so far, we only got to tape our ‘kulitan’ scenes. I can’t wait to level up in my acting for the program because I know our characters still have a lot of exciting adventures together,” she declared.
Of their scenes together, Lovi said the most memorable for her, so far, was the one they did inside a jeepney. Tanggol volunteers to bring Mokang to school. They hail a jeepney, but belatedly realize that there’s only one vacant seat. Tanggol tricks Mokang into sitting on his lap the entire ride.
“The scene came out cute, natural and funny. I don’t always get to play a character like this, and just as Coco said in an interview, we promise to offer a different Lovi through this series. I normally play characters that are very serious and a bit too sensual,” the actress pointed out.
Lovi admitted to liking Coco’s unique way of directing the show—actors are not given any scripts and are encouraged to improvise. “I’m also not a fan of following the script completely. Just like in my other projects, if I want to add something that I know suits my character, I will add. Of course, there are some directors who want you to stick to the lines completely, I respect them,” she said. “I prefer to show emotions that come from the heart. I will say what I want to say, but, of course, as an actor, I would also like to know the structure [of the show], as well as my character’s backstory. To be fair, we talk about these things on this show, as well.”
Lovi added that one of her favorite movies of her dad’s was actually “Batang Quiapo,” and so she was grateful to be part of its TV adaptation. She also pointed out that the project was never part of the contract negotiation for her transfer to ABS-CBN.
“We didn’t talk about me doing any FPJ series or film. However, it was my dream to be able to work with Coco. I admit to asking for Coco,” she said. “Not only do I get to work with him in ‘Batang Quiapo,’ but also with a wonderful cast. There’s nothing more I can ask for.”
“FPJ’s Batang Quiapo” airs on weekdays, 8 p.m., on the Kapamilya Channel, TV5 and A2Z. INQ