Manila Bulletin

Working for the first time with Coco Martin as director in “Ang Panday” is a welcome experience for Jake Cuenca.

“I love him as a director. Parang lahat naman ng artista, we all wish to have an actor’s director and Coco Martin is an actor’s director. Naiintindihan niya kung ano ang pinagdadaanan ng artista in a scene-to-scene basis. Not a lot of current directors know that. Hindi ka niya ilalagay sa alanganin. In this movie he just let me play. He trusts me so much na makakapagbigay ako ng performance na kakaiba and he gave it to me. I’m so happy,” Jake said after the screening of the movie at Trinoma.

Playing iconic villain Lizardo to Coco’s Flavio was something Jake was just too happy to essay.

“It’s my most favorite role ever,” he declared. “In my long showbiz career, my favorite role that I’ve ever done in my life is this role. Super pinaglaruan ko ang role ko.”

He recalled getting the offer.

“The day na sinabi nila na ako ang Lizardo, I didn’t think twice (in accepting it). Sabi ko, ‘Sino director?’ ‘Coco, first film niya.’ ‘Wow. Perfect!’ I feel blessed to work with him in his first movie as a director. Tutal nagsimula din naman kami together. We were there from the beginning. I’m so happy to have been here for that.”

Playing antagonist had Jake almost shedding a tear in one of their fight scenes.

“Nanood ako ng fight scene namin noong huli (na part). Nangingiyak-ngiyak ako kasi ang ganda. It’s like, ‘Oh, my God.’ I’m so lucky to be part of this movie,” he said.

The fight scene alone took all of three days to perfect.

“It was three long, long six to four a.m., five a.m. days. It’s a long, long scene but then honestly, when you see it, it’s amazing. It’s so good. First time ko nakita na may effects. Sabi ko, ‘Oh my God. I can’t believe I was part of that scene.’”

Jake highly recommends “Ang Panday” to moviegoers this Christmas.

“Ito lang ang masasabi ko about the movie: Sa lahat ng tao na manonood, sulit ang pera ninyo dito kasi unang-una, ginastusan ng maraming pera ang pelikula, maraming-maraming pera. Lahat ng tao na manonood, ’yung pera na pang-ticket para manood ng pelikula, it’s worth every centavo. Ginastusan nila ng malaking pera ang pelikulang ito.”


Just like Coco, Jake wants to direct someday.

“I will study (directing) first. Sometimes ’yung mga tao they’re convincing me to direct na. This is my thing lang like acting, my confidence comes from the fact that I studied (acting). I am educated when it comes to acting. So when it comes to directing, on the day that I’d do it, gusto ko at par ang directing ko with my acting. So, I want to study din.”

Describing 2017 as “amazing,” Jake rattles of the reasons he said so.

“It’s a great year. It would be better if they give me an award, you know. Eventually, let’s see but for me 2017 is really amazing. But even amazing, I had some ups and downs. But for me, project-wise, lahat ng trabahong nakuha ko was just amazing.

“The soap is doing well (‘Ikaw Lang Ang Iibigin’). This movie (“Ang Panday”) is so good. And then the triathlon is keeping me just right. I’ve nothing to complain about this year. Wala akong mairereklamo.”

He shared how he’d like his 2018.

“Mag-aaral ako ulit. Tinapos ko ’yung teleserye, ’yung ‘Ikaw Lang Ang Iibigin,’ tapos na ’yun by February. Mag-aaral ako ulit ng acting. And then I already have another project. Ang galing.”

As for his New Year’s resolution, he quipped, “I think not to say sorry so much. Not to apologize.”

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