For those who miss Zaijian Jaranilla were surely delighted to see him grace the latest episode of ABS-CBN Entertainment’s Hotspot Live last Tuesday, October 20, to not just promote his latest project “Boyette (Not A Girl Yet),” but to also talk about his experiences as a popular child wonder!
Upon confirming from him the correct pronunciation of his name, host DJ Jhai Ho quizzed the young actor about the things that have been keeping him occupied throughout the community quarantine, to which he disclosed streaming his games on Facebook and promoting his latest movie.
“Sobrang proud na proud ako ‘di lang po sa sarili ko, kundi sa buong production namin [dahil] nakagawa kami ng napakagandang pelikula sa gitna ng pandemic kasi hindi po naging madali e. Pero alam n’yo po ‘yong feeling no’ng natapos namin ‘yong movie? Parang sabi ko sa sarili ko, ‘kahit ‘di ko panoorin ‘tong movie na ‘to, sobrang solid nito. Kasi alam mo naman ‘yong istorya and ako ‘yong gumawa. Sobrang saya lang po sa feeling and proud na proud ako,” the Bagani star conveyed when asked how he feels to headline the upcoming Star Cinema flick.
They then went on to tackle the fondest memories of Zaijian as a child actor, to which he shared being able to work with the biggest names in the industry and hearing their good words towards him and his performances.
“Siyempre po, hindi mawawala d’yan ‘yong mga lesson, may mga realizations din akong natutunan, [gaya ng] ‘di lang pala dapat nilalaro ‘yong trabaho mo. Dapat isapuso mo siya, dapat maging masaya ka kasi kung hindi, mapapagod ka. Tapos, dapat maging professional ka lang palagi. ‘Yon naman talaga ang pinaka-importante,” he further imparted.
Then he added, “Saka isa pa, ibigay mo lagi ang best mo kasi kahit naman na ‘di ka nila kunin sa susunod or mawalan ka ng project, parang masaya ang puso mo na nabigay mo ‘yong best mo.”
Although a lot of people recognize him as Santino, his ever-iconic role in the classic Kapamilya series May Bukas Pa, Zaijian admitted not being aware of his fame during those times. Actually, working then just felt all fun and play for him and even he even considered everyone on the set as his playmates.
“Nito lang po, no’ng medyo nagkaisip na ako kasi nakita ko nga na maraming na-inspire ‘yong mga palabas ko noon. Kasi po dati, wala lang po sa’kin kasi laro-laro lang po iniisip ko. Pero no’ng nagkaisip na po ako, naisip ko na, ‘hala, ang dami palang na-touch ng May Bukas Pa?’ Hindi lang po ‘yong May Bukas Pa, [pati na rin] ‘yong iba’t iba kong teleseryeng nagawa with Kuya Piolo, with Ms. Carmina. Ang sarap lang po sa feeling na nakatrabaho ko sila sa gano’ng edad palang po,” he divulged.
When it comes to his relationship with his fellow former child stars, he disclosed that it was only to Xyriel Manabat, who he regards as his best friend, to whom he’s able to keep in touch with despite their busy schedule. In fact, they even appeared in Magandang Buhay recently at the same time.
Moving on to his latest film “Boyette (Not A Girl Yet),” the 19-year-old actor enthused that everyone should definitely watch out for it because of its awesome comedy-drama narrative, the relatable stories of each character, and morals it will offer.
In order to prepare for the titular character, Zaijian revealed that he just consolidated all the roles he took on in the past, such as in the “Orasan” episode of Maalaala Mo Kaya that was recently re-aired on Kapamilya Channel and Kapamilya Online Live. He also related that it’s a collaborative effort between him and Director Jumbo Albano.
Just like other artists, he also has a dream role that he wishes to portray in the future. And for him, it’s either an autistic or mentally-challenged person because he knows that those will greatly challenge his acting skills. Meanwhile, when it comes to the actors he’s dreaming to work with, John Lloyd Cruz and Piolo Pascual top the list.
Zaijian gamely took on DJ Jhai Ho’s Acting Challenge, wherein he impressively reenacted his past roles in Lorenzo’s Time, Noah, and May Bukas Pa, and even shared a few background stories about each.
When asked by DJ Jhai Ho about his reaction on still being identified as “Santino” up to now that he’s already grown up, he implied that he’s very much okay with it since it was the character who introduced him to the public.
He also decided to postpone his studies for the meantime in order to give way to his present and upcoming showbiz commitments. Aside from work, gaming, his family and his non-showbiz girlfriend for more than a year now keep him motivated as well during this pandemic.
“Boyette (Not A Girl Yet)” will be released by Star Cinema soon on KTX.ph, iWantTFC, SkyCable, and Cignal through Cinexpress. It also stars, Maris Racal, Inigo Pascual, Joey Marquez, and a more talented artists so you better not miss it!