Marian Rivera isn’t very difficult to get to know. She can be made to talk a lot, especially if it’s about the things that she likes to do. She’s very fun to get to know to—because she and the characters that she portrays on TV are not far from different.
That’s why it didn’t take long time before we found ourselves laughing at her jokes and funny antics with Rochelle Pangilinan and Sef Cadayona when the three of them visited Davao for a mall show last May 14.
Right after Marian took her seat, she began talking excitedly about her upcoming TV series: Amaya. We saw that the person in front of us was real (no awkward pauses and hesitation); she even admitted that she had many similar traits with the character that she plays in the upcoming series.
Amaya is GMA’s first epic-serye; a story about a princess who was stripped off her royalty, made into a slave, and later on fought for vengeance and for her kingdom’s freedom. Amaya is the name of this legendary princess, and this story unfolds in front of a heavy Filipino backdrop—it’s based from real-life events in the past.
Like Amaya, Marian admits she’s very family oriented. She likes to do a lot of things with her family and maintains a very strong connection with them. When she’s finished shooting for her shows, she ensures that she gets to spend time with her folks at home. She also keeps her family up-to-date when it comes to her career and her personal life. For a hectic artist like her, we found this to be very sweet; not a lot of people her age really do this.
She shares that the last time she had her vacation was in Singapore; but she immediately quips that the time that the varying rest days from work are already vacations. “Basta wala ka nang trabaho, vacation na yun,” she said. During this time, she spends her time with her family for a day in a spa, or for leisurely walks with her mom and grandmom. “Hindi pwedeng walang time for family,” she said.
Also, she is a go-getter. Who would have thought that the dainty looking actress in the purple asymmetrical and pleated dress seated next to us was so keen at doing physically strenuous activities? (We mean it.)
She said that she enjoyed the Arnis workshops she had in preparation for the shooting of some of the battle scenes of Amaya. While she isn’t very strong (trust us, we saw her have a hard time rotate the Lazy Susan; we also saw her funny attempts at picking an oily mushroom from her plate using chopsticks; sorry Marian, were we observing you too much? Haha), the Marian who wore glittery gold peep toe heels that day revealed that she’s very flexible when it comes to her work. “I’m very flexible as long as you flex my body,” she jokes.
She claims to be able to take on any kind of role, whether drama or action. The roles that she still dreams of playing are pretty straightforward—but funny: to be a crazy person and to be a man.
Amaya is the first time that she will be starring in an original TV series; it’s also her first time to hold a sword. She describes having her role as Amaya as refreshing because it’s a far cry from the soft roles she’s had in the past where she’s the weaker and more delicate character (a cripple in Darna, and some average woman in love stories). Now she’s a fierce Amaya trained in melee combat.
She jokes that she doesn’t want to take on a gay role because that’s what she’s been doing throughout her career in GMA—be outspoken and flamboyant. On that note, she and Rochelle laughed hard.
Marian is very dedicated and serious about her work. While she sometimes goofs around seeing men wear bahag (with exposed butt cheeks) in the set, she is ready to take on the life of Amaya, who goes through various transitions of lifestyle.
She takes on the different transformations the character Amaya goes through, with poise and with grace. Whether in clad in layers of royal clothing, down to stripped slave costumes, or in a fierce warrior’s armor, Marian doesn’t mind shooting in varying outdoor weather conditions.
She’s amazingly simple. She didn’t show any hesitation to eat rice during lunch; other celebrities would turn down great food because of the thought of carbs. The celebrity who had a Louis Vuitton mobile phone pouch and a traffic light red Prada bag turned out to live a simple lifestyle. When the waiter asked what she wanted for a drink, she said that she’d have a bottled water—a bottled water! Nothing fancy, you see.
When asked whether she’d be open to more mature roles and for bed scenes, the actress maintains that love scenes aren’t all about bed scenes and kissing; that such are actually mostly about emotions. She also noted that it was the artist’s task for these emotions to be conveyed even when the scenes are not that blatant, or obscene.
What’s more, Marian is unbelievably humble. She has a deep understanding of her job as an actress and takes her role in the industry seriously. And best of all, she likes to think that she’s not “the star” of the network—this is exactly the reason why she is on top now. (Did you know that she even requested the waiters to take the centerpiece away from the table so she can have a clear view of the people she’s talking to? Sweet.)
More Amaya and Marian Trivia:
- Marian had to wear four sets of hair extension for scenes when the was supposed to be topless; so that her hair can cover her sensitive body parts
- Marian keeps a diary to plan her schedule and manage her time
- The accessories worn by the characters in the series were authentic gold
- Marian had a hard time studying her character as a princess. She said that it’s difficult to act like a princess who speaks profoundly and deeply using formal Tagalog and some Central Visayan words
- The songs that will be sang in the series are based on chants spoken by pre-colonial royalty
- For Amaya, Rochelle will be playing the kontrabida, while in real-life, she’s very close with Marian. As opposed to wild catfights in other teleseryes, she and Marian are princesses in the epic-serye, so they just hurl sharp words at each other and not resort to physical fights. It is Rochelle’s first time to be a kontrabida too.
Watch out for Amaya’s debut on May 30, 2011 (TOMORROW!) during prime time at GMA. The handsome star dude who sat with us, Sef Cadayona, will also star in a dance-serye in GMA soon. Hold your breaths for that, girls. But for now, there’s Amaya.
Photo Credits: DJ Tadena
Blog entry co-written with Jesse Boga