By Baby K. Jimenez (The Philippine Star) | Updated September 24, 2015
MANILA, Philippines – So you sit there mesmerized by the presence of a powerhouse cast, dazzled by the extremely good-looking gents and beautiful ladies. Oh my! Albert Martinez looking so “crispy delicious,” half smiling with his come-and-get-me eyes, a seat away from the “fruit of the season,” Coco Martin, who takes your breath away. Sitting in between is my dear, dear friend for years — the eternal Movie Queen Ate Sue (ooops, I mean SR — Susan Roces). My eyes dart left to right like watching a prized tennis match spotting Maja Salvador (she looks like her aunt Mina Aragon now!), Bela Padilla, Agot Isidro, Ana Roces… The face of FPJ flashes on the wide screen behind them and you’re transported to that golden era when he was King. The glorious past merges into the present and it’s not a techno sync. It is live.
So it is discussed in details: The first adaptation of the FPJ classic film Probinsyano into a drama series is not leaving a stone unturned into making it big — and probably the biggest by Dreamscape Entertainment. Coco handpicked this project at a time when the audience ought to be reminded of the heroism of our country’s policemen. He explains: “I have no intention of trying to be the new FPJ as he remains unequalled. I just feel that I must share this great movie especially to the generation of today.”
Susan echoes: “Yes, it is not a remake. In fact, my character as Coco’s Lola was added as per his suggestion. I am not the lead role in this film but I am really awed by the entire process of the team — how they add extra effort and most times oblivious of budget costs to make Probinsyano a must-watch teleserye. I am so grateful.”
Dennis Padilla reminisces his days as a child actor doing several films with FPJ who’s a close buddy of his dad Dencio, a topnotch comedian then. Agot Isidro adds she is doing a kontrabida role. Jaime Fabregas says he knows this will run for a long time. Everyone else is excited like Malou Crisologo, Joey Marquez, Arjo Atayde, Zaijian Jaranilla, Simon Pineda, Marvin Yap, Pepe Herrera, Lester Llansang, John Medina, Michael Jornales, Gio Alvarez and Tess Antonio. Direction is by Avel Sunpongco and Malu Sevilla and theme song by Gary Valenciano.
Everyone notices it is another team-up of Coco and Albert Martinez, and the return of the Coco-Jam loveteam (Coco and Maja, do I hear rumors of an off-screen budding romance?).
The story: Ang Probinsyano follows the journey of twins Ador and Cardo, played by Martin, who were estranged from each other by circumstances, mostly financial reasons. Ador is a celebrated police officer while Cardo is a Special Actions Forces Trooper. Now watch for suspenseful cliffhangers — as Coco dodges the bullets and more characters get involved at the abangan ang susunod na kabanata episodes.
As the presscon draws to a close, I leave the room with a smile in my heart. The area brims with positive vibes. They work like family (the oft-frequented tent is that of Susan’s with the younger people asking personal advice during taping lulls.) Each day is like a picnic scenario with everyone bringing food. The keyword is “sharing.” The main theme is “love.” Love for work, professionalism, if possible, perfection.
Ang Probinsyano airs weeknights starting on Monday, Sept. 28.