Nonie Buencamino, national winner for Best Supporting Actor at the 2021 Asian Academy Creative Awards, had a raw and powerful range of emotions as Simon Advincula in the inspirational series Huwag Kang Mangamba. The motivations behind his authentic portrayal, revealed as he reacts to his scenes in this edition of Kapamilya React.
Simon was a greedy politician and ruthless grandfather. There was a scene where he punished Rafa (Kyle Echarri) for choosing the good and the truth and not abiding by his plans. Rafa’s incorrupt principles, Simon perceived as defiance, thus the disappointment.
In that scene, Rafa arrived home after getting himself into trouble for helping his new friends Mira (Andrea Brillantes) and Joy (Francine Diaz). Simon welcomed his grandson with a jaw-breaking slap, his violent behavior coupled with a verbal outburst. It was so intense that Rafa could’ve suffered more had his brother Miguel (RK Bagatsing) failed to meddle and protect him.
Watching that encounter, Nonie’s first reaction was, “Masakit kaya ‘yon?” Well, the answer is ‘no’ according to Kyle himself in a past interview on Kapamilya Chat. Kyle mentioned that it’s one of his memorable scenes from the series. He said he was scared at first but the slap turned out real yet gentle. He couldn’t explain how Nonie did it but the slap helped bring out his real emotions.
Asked about their effective chemistry, Nonie chalked it up to trust. The lock-in setup has its advantages as well. “We had conversations together. The fact that we are working on a scene and even during rehearsals, nakakapag-discuss kami objectively about how we’re going to do the scene together. I think malaking bagay ‘yun para mapabilis ‘yung relationship namin.”
As a veteran actor, Nonie passes on the techniques and lessons he learned from his extensive experience. His constant reminder to Kyle is to keep his line delivery clear and keep the truth within the scene. “’Yan naman ang pinaka-essence. Kailangan totoo siya at naniniwala ka na ikaw ‘yung nandoon sa sitwasyon.”
The next clip is from his intense, well-crafted scene with RK. The truth bomb about Miguel (RK)’s sexuality shook Simon to the core. Driven mad with political ambitions, all Simon could think about was their public image. There were also hints of a bruised ego, thinking he was foolish not to know about his grandson’s skeletons.
Nonie revealed the scene was infused with raw reactions, thanks to RK’s moving performance. “Na-affect ako kay RK kasi up to that point, supposedly wala akong inkling na gay siya. So it was more of horrified ako as the Lolo who took care of him. In front of me, nakikita ko na ‘Oo nga, nakikita ko na ngayon na ang dami niyang tinago sa akin.’”
Nonie also re-watched the hospital scene where Simon finally revealed his terrible sickness to Rafa. A contrast to their loud confrontations, Simon and Rafa delivered something mellow, moving, authentic and totally painful. Nonie said he went for a more personal technique in that heart-shattering moment.
“I felt that it would do well for me to imagine that Kyle was one of my own sons. So I imagined my sons’ face on his face and under the same situation. For me, it was a very fulfilling day, sa eksena na ‘yan.”The bloopers also made it extra memorable, “Medyo nakakabaliw kasi iiyak kami tapos tatawa tapos iiyak.”
We move on to his final scene that made him say “Naku! Last day ko na pala!” On getting killed by Eula Valdes’ character, Deborah, Nonie commented that working with the industry’s finest gems is always one for the books. “It’s always great to be working with great actors. Bonus ‘yan para sa isang nagtatarabaho sa industriya.”
Simon’s death scene was pivotal in stirring rebellion amongst the people of Hermoso. The faithful ones got the courage to fight back, although Deborah (Eula)’s devotees remained blind. Looking at how the story progressed, he noted that each character had different journeys, all of which are meaningful and imbued with lessons.
Simon’s story, for instance, is a reflection of Bro as a God of endless chances. “Hindi huli ang lahat kahit matanda ka na, kahit marami ka nang nagawang masama sa ibang tao. Hinid pa huli ang lahat kasi ang pagpapatawad ng Panginoon ay walang hangganan,” Nonie said of the lesson he got from playing Simon.
He added that the essence of faith is trusting Bro even if we don’t always get what we want, for at the end of the day, He always has better plans.
Nonie’s emotionally deep performance in Huwag Kang Mangamba gained him a new recognition via 2021 Asian Academy Creative Awards – something he wants to thank Bro for. “I was really happy. Nagpasalamat ako sa Diyos na ‘Okay, may nakakapansin din naman pala.’”
Don’t miss the remaining episodes of Huwag Kang Mangamba The Healing Finale on Kapamilya Channel, Kapamilya Online Live, and A2Z.