Vic Sotto takes a break from ‘daddy roles’
Vic Sotto has amassed some 126 acting credits in his 48 years in show biz. He has starred in several blockbuster movies, top-billed iconic sitcoms and hosted long-running television shows.
By almost every measure, the 69-year-old star is an industry veteran. But he doesn’t necessarily see himself that way. “There are still a lot of things I have to learn about the industry. There are many things I still want to do. I’m still young—not even 100!” he said at a press conference for his new sitcom, “Open 24/7.”
“Sa tingin ko, nasa pakiramdam lang ‘yan, eh. And I don’t consider myself as a veteran actor,” he said.
“Open 24/7,” for instance, is another learning opportunity for Vic. With a cast composed mostly of millennials and Gen Z talents, it would be interesting to see, he said, what kind of dynamic and chemistry they will be able to produce in the show.
“There are also baby boomers and Gen X [artists] here, so you will see how these different generations interact with each other. We all have different ways of thinking or sense of humor. But at the end of the day, we’re all equal. We can learn something from them and they can also learn from us,” Vic told the Inquirer.
“Open 24/7,” which airs Saturdays starting on May 27, follows Boss EZ (Vic), a socially awkward man who finds himself manning his brother Spark’s (Jose Manalo) convenience store, after the latter figures in an accident that leaves him temporarily disabled.
Gen Z crew
So now, it’s up to EZ to deal with the store’s quirky customers and zany Gen Z crew (Sofia Pablo, Allen Ansay, Riel Lomadilla, Anjay Anson, Kimson Tan, Abed Green and Bruce Roeland). Helping Boss EZ manage operations is Mikael (Maja Salvador), the store’s “kikay” millennial crew member.
“We thought about the convenience store as a setting because we noticed that they became a lot busier during the pandemic. A lot of people were coming in. They started delivery services and having motorcycle riders. So these gave us ideas for characters to work with,” director JR Reyes said.
Vic looks forward to playing Boss EZ because it’s not the usual “daddy role” he has played in past successful sitcoms like “Daddy Di Do Du,” “Vampire ang Daddy Ko” and “Daddy’s Gurl.”
“I will assume a different personality. Usually, I’m the father. Now I will be veering away from the daddy role—dabarkads role muna,” said Vic, who has formed a comfortable working relationship with Maja in their two years cohosting “Eat Bulaga!”
“We were together for two years in ‘Bulaga.’ And Maja’s friends with Pauleen (Luna, his wife); they’re close. So hindi na s’ya iba sa ‘kin. Palagay na agad ang aking loob. She’s a versatile actress. She’s not only good at acting, but also at singing [and]dancing—lahat na,” Vic said of Maja.
The show’s younger cast members couldn’t be more excited and nervous about working with a show biz icon like Vic. What piece of advice can he give his less experienced costars when it comes to comedy?
“Importante na kahit ‘di ka nagpapatawa, eh nakakatawa ‘yung ginagawa mo. It’s about teamwork. Like in basketball, we have our positions or roles to fulfill. And we have to do our part to score big,” he said.
But more than giving acting tips or explaining the nuances of comedy, Vic stressed the importance of leading by example.
“That’s the best way. What they see in you will shape the way they view work and show biz. You have to be professional, you have to arrive on set ready. There’s time for work and there’s time for play,” Vic said. “Jose, Maja and I have to lead by example … We also hope to show them how to enjoy work. Because you don’t feel [like] you’re working if you’re happy and having fun. That’s more or less the formula of a successful sitcom—the sense of family and closeness,” he said. “That will make you look forward to taping day because you know you will have a fun time.”
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