'Penduko': Why Albert Martinez put off ‘semiretirement’

‘Penduko’: Why Albert Martinez put off ‘semiretirement’

By: - Reporter
/ 10:11 AM December 23, 2023

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'Penduko': Why Albert Martinez put off ‘semiretirement’Albert Martinez as Gat Blan- co —ALBERT MARTINEZ/ FACEBOOK

Albert Martinez as Gat Blan- co —ALBERT MARTINEZ/ FACEBOOK

While “semiretirement” is something Albert Martinez has been mulling over for a while, he just couldn’t bring himself to pass up on good acting projects, like the 2023 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) entry, “Penduko.”

“I have been telling myself that I should start slowing down. I want to start focusing on my six grandchildren. However, offers are piling up. And I couldn’t turn down ‘Penduko.’ It’s something I really wanted to do,” Albert said at a recent press conference.

The bulk of Albert’s projects the past few years has been television series. And the last time he had an MMFF entry was in 2007. “That added to the excitement. It has been a while since I did a film. I’m seen more often on television. So I thought this is a good comeback for me—and an MMFF entry at that,” he said.


But once the promotional campaign and theater run are over, Albert will finally give himself some much-needed rest and assume the role of a full-time lolo to his grandchildren—two from each of his three children.


“I’m looking forward to a less toxic schedule. I’m 62 now. I want to spend more time for myself, and with family and friends. And this is supposedly my rest period. But I had to put it off,” he said.

“I really love spending time with my grandchildren. We have a group chat, where I would send photos of me filming ‘Penduko.’ And one of my grandkids asked, ‘Lolo, you’re an actor?’ And I said, ‘Yes, I am!’” he related.

In Viva Films’ “Penduko,” directed by Jason Paul Laxamana and starring Matteo Guidicelli, Albert plays Gat Blanco, a shady businessman and owner of Hatinggabi, an underground company that offers “albularyos-for-hire.”

“I’m given the chance to not be me. They gave me a character who doesn’t look like me, talk like me. It was a character created by the director. I didn’t see Albert in the film. And I hope the audience feels the same and enjoys the character as it is. I’m proud to be part of this,” he said.

Clear vision

While he considers himself a collaborative actor, Albert felt no need to suggest new ideas for his character.

“I trusted our director because he has a clear vision of the material. There’s always collaboration on the set. When I think of doing something I’m more comfortable with, I ask permission. And if it’s OK with the director, I do it. But here, Direk JP already had the script down pat. The story and character were ironed out already,” he said.


“Every so often, when you do projects, you come across scripts that are unfinished—aayusin pa sa set. But there was no such issue here which meant less work for me. Preparation was easier because I just had to follow the narrative,” she said.

Albert believes that younger viewers will be able to appreciate this new take on Pedro Penduko, he said, because it caters to things the Gen Z experience and deal with. “The previous iterations were more classic. This one is more Gen Z. It talks about the dreams and aspirations of the youth,” he said. INQ

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TAGS: 2023 MMFF, Albert Martinez, Matteo Guidicelli, MMFF, Pedro Penduko

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