By Monet Lu
Published: February 13, 2016 | No Comments

“Paloma,” “Cardo” “Daniel Guidotti” “Bestfriend Emman.“—these are just some of the roles he portrayed and yet these are the very characters that were etched in our memories and became part of our lives as avid teleserye fans. Each of the roles are so distinct from each other and yet, all of them attest to the quintessential chameleon acting of Coco Martin.

I’ve heard great stories about the young actor. It’s one of those stories that would inspire anyone who is just starting out in the tv and film industry. Such is my delight when I’ve seen how people enjoy his teleserye, “FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano.”

As I am currently visiting Manila for a much-deserved homecoming vacation, I couldn’t help but be amazed at how much things have changed in terms of who is getting more exposure in the entertainment arena. But I am so glad that Coco Martin, who is one of the most talented actors of this generation, is getting his share of fame and recognition that he so very much deserved.

An online bio of him states: “Coco Martin is one of the celebrities in the Philippines that earned his break through the indie scene. Coco or born as Rodel Nacianceno was dubbed as “The Prince of Philippine Independent Films.” Coco was born on November 1, 1981 in Novaliches, Quezon City. He was once an OFW based in Alberta, Canada. He worked as a janitor for housekeeping. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree on HRM in National College of Business and Arts.”

His website narrates his journey to stardom saying; “While his early years in the limelight were plagued with uncertainty, he still grabbed the opportunity to make every new experience count. Coco was launched as part of Star Circle Batch 9, landing him supporting roles in several films like Luv Txt and other television shows. Nothing remarkable came out of this endeavor, so Coco went back to pursue his studies, putting his mainstream showbiz career in the backseat.

Coco was already starting to feel comfortable partaking in smaller-scale projects instead, when he came across with Ferdinand Lapuz, a respected promoter of Filipino films in international festivals. He offered Coco the lead role in the movie Masahista, his initial foray into the independent film genre. Innocent to the provocative nature of the project directed by Brillante Mendoza, Coco jumped into the so-called œindie film scene amidst personal doubts in high hopes of competing abroad, so he can seek a better job prospect in another land.”

I guess that explains his great talent in internalizing almost any role that was given to him – including a very beautiful woman cop undercover named, Paloma in the hit series, “FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano” (recognized as the Best Primetime Show by Platinum Stallion Media Awards). In the said series, Coco played the role of twins Ador and Cardo who were estranged from each other, yet they both pursued the path of law enforcement. Ador was a celebrated police officer, who is married with a kid. Cardo on the other hand, loves the solitude of the mountains as a Special Actions Forces Trooper. Their lives take a turn when Ador gets murdered due to his entanglement in a syndicate. To cover the crime, Cardo was ordered to become his brother and live his life, and in order to seek justice for his brother’s death.

Coco’s life story as a regular OFW starring in several indie films, to being one of the finest actors in Philippine cinema has taught him – and those who want to be like him – that dedication to one’s craft will reap success, if he or she is just patient, hardworking as most of all, humble. I admire him for being one of the truest person in showbiz. He doesn’t try as hard to associate himself to controversial personalities or gimmicks. He is just plain, old, down-to-earth “probinsyano” like the character he plays.

Coco also starred in the blockbuster hit and Star Cinema’s entry to MMFF, “Beauty and the Bestie” opposite Vice Ganda. The latter earned over 500 million and was the season’s number 1 top grossing entry.

Throughout Coco’s journey to achieving his dreams, he remained simple, humble and grateful. To date, he has won more than 50 awards and showing no signs of fading out of the limelight. I say this to most of my friends but I say this again to those who admire this young man: It is not always about the destination, sometimes – or more often – it is the journey that makes it all worth it. To Coco Martin: congratulations on your journey.


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