Power of one

Alfred Vargas keeps life simple by not piling too many things on his plate. As he prioritizes serving people and family life, starring in movies and on television takes the backseat.

In a recent interview with Bulletin Entertainment, he said the reason he can’t fully give up acting is that it augments his income as public servant.

“I remember telling myself when I got my first salary, ‘The pay is equivalent to a day’s work in shoot or if I do two songs at a mall show.’ I say that without regret but just to explain that I still accept acting jobs because I want to sustain my family, so my children can go to school and I could give them what they need.”

What kind of movies then, we asked.

“At this point in my life, I will only do advocacy film. I want to do meaningful projects to touch viewers’ hearts.”

Alfred has interesting insight on his two jobs: Acting gives him satisfaction, doing public service gives him fulfillment.

“Getting satisfied is all about the self. As actor, you maybe aim to win awards, you want to have blockbuster films, you want to have quality projects – nothing wrong with that and if you inspire people, the better.

“But in public service, it’s all about work, all about sacrifice. I think whenever the time comes that you do not think of yourself anymore and you think of others first, that’s when fulfillment comes in. That’s when you see the magic of being a man for others.”

Alfred is behind the National Integrated Cancer Control Act.

“It’s a law wherein we will fund and prioritize dealing with cancer as a government, as a nation,” he said.

He knows about it firsthand because his mother passed away from the disease.

“It’s hard because we didn’t have a specific local government department or agency that could guide us, that can tell us what to do or where to get help or what assistance we need and how to find the best treatment for us,” he recalled. “So, having a National Cancer Board would really be helpful.”

He remembers the three words his mom told him on her death bed: Integrity, compassion, and competence.

“I think about those words everyday,” he shared. “We were raised that way. We might have committed numerous mistakes in our lives as a person growing up but we’re all very fortunate to have such wonderful parents.”

So, maybe a film about cancer in the future?

“Sure. Film is a very powerful tool to inform others, to send a message. So, as a producer and as an actor, somewhere along the way, when I come across a good script about cancer we will surely do it.”

Alfred recently finished the GMA drama supernatural series “Kambal, Karibal.” He was last seen on the big screen through “Ang Guro Kong ’Di Marunong Magbasa.”

The actor is wrapping up work on indie movie “Kaputol” co-starring Cherie Gil and due in theaters next year.