Although seasoned stars in their own right, Jodi Sta. Maria, Iza Calzado, and Sam Milby still tipped a hat to iconic co-star Maricel Soriano who've been generously giving acting tips to them on the set of their new soap.
In a recent interview with the lead cast of "Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin" that included Bulletin Entertainment, Jodi shared, "One time, si Nanay Maria meron siyang isang ginawa na parang napanganga ako sa eksena. Sabi ko 'Nay paano mo ginawa 'yun?' Sabi ko 'Turuan mo naman ako?' So tinuro niya sa akin 'yung technique niya, 'yung style niya. So may mga ibang sequences -- ganu'n 'yung take na ginawa ko. So sabi ko 'Nay thank you, sobra nagwo-work."
Iza also experienced what she called the "Inay Maria School of Acting."
"Kasi talagang nagtuturo siya and we're so blessed to be on the receiving end of that knowledge and that wisdom and technique as well."
Sam agreed with the two ladies, saying Maricel “helped out so much."
Asked how she feels about the compliments, Maricel simply said that’s how she is with her “children.”
"Ang sarap sa feeling pag sinasabi nila sa'yo na, 'Nay, pa-paano ba 'yung ganito?'” she said. “Pag tinatanong ako, ibibigay ko talaga ang sagot. Talagang walang pagod ko silang tuturuan kasi nagtatanong 'yung mga bata, bakit hindi ko naman sila tuturuan, 'di ba? Ang babait ng mga bata, ang gagaling. O, paano naman ako bilang nanay nila na hindi ko sila tuturuan, siyempre tuturuan ko sila. Malayo pa ang karerang tatakbuhin ng mga ito."
How was it for the actors going back to work amid pandemic?
Sam appreciates it that the production team strictly implements the necessary measures for the safety of cast and crew. The 36-year-old actor also pointed out that everyone underwent testing and while on set, a medic is always there.
When the cameras aren’t rolling, everyone is required to wear mask, continue observing social distancing, and props are disinfected.
Jodi said they were also given a copy of the guidelines and protocol from the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases.
"Di mawawala ang pangamba siyempre. 'Yung pangamba kasi bukod sa pagiging artista, nanay din naman ako, anak din naman ako, kapatid ako. Meron akong mga bagay at mga tao na iniisip, hindi lang ang sarili ko,” she said.
“But then I would always tell myself, 'If God allowed us to carry on with this project, then He would provide us with everything that we'll need para mapagtagumpayan namin 'to.'"
Iza added that, of course, they are concerned about their safety but they relied on prayers and observed the rules closely for protection.
No kissing scene, catfight
"Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin" director F.M. Reyes also talked about their shooting set-up, saying things had changed drastically on how scenes are carried out, even what scenes are permissible or not.
Due to the social distancing regulation, actors are not allowed to do physical contact such as love scene, kissing scene, and catfight.
Thankfully, there are some ways to make it look believable by positioning the camera at the right angle where it would be seen somebody is kissing someone.
"We have to be clever. We have to find ways kung paano ma-practice social distancing," he said.
The story revolves around two best friends (played by Iza and Jodi) who are destroyed by mortal sin and will become bitter rivals as they battle for love, family, and prestige.
Marissa (Jodi) and Ellice (Iza), best friends who hail from different worlds: Ellice is from an influential family and lives a fancy life, while Marissa is a simple lass living with her mother Lucing (Maricel).
The two are inseparable until one night, a gruesome crime changes their destinies --- Ellice accidentally kills the son of a powerful congressman who attempts to rape her, and Marissa takes the blame as Ellice’s father offered her P10 million and a promise that she is not to spend a day in jail.
However, none of the promises is granted and Marissa is forced to suffer in jail for years. Not aware of her best friend’s agonizing fate, Ellice lives her life in the US and meets Gabriel (Sam), the man he later on marries.
As Ellice goes back to the Philippines to start anew, she meets Marissa, but the best friend she used to know is long gone as Marissa vows to take everything Ellice has --- money, possessions, and even her husband --- and make her suffer just like how she did.
The tale will then focus on where will Marissa’s grit for vengeance leads them to and how will Ellice fight for Gabriel if he falls for Marissa and her cunning plans.
Produced by JRB Creative Production, "Ang Sa Iyo Ay Akin" is the first teleserye to be fully launched on Aug. 17 on Kapamilya Online Live.