After weeks of waiting, fans of Alexa Ilacad and Gab Lagman were surely thrilled and delighted to see their characters Hannah and Kiko finally cross paths in the recent episodes of the well-loved primetime series Init Sa Magdamag.
And to further talk about their much-awaited appearances and experiences working on the show, as well as some personal stuff about them, DJ Jhai Ho caught up with the two young stars in the latest episode Hotspot.
The fun and insightful chikahan commenced with the host quizzing them on what they feel about being part of the romance drama. Both of them divulged how their hearts are full because of the overwhelming support of the viewers, with Alexa expressing how happy she is to be one of its ensemble cast, while Gab feels grateful and blessed.
Even though this was their first project together, Gab imparted that they didn’t have a difficult time building their chemistry since they immediately clicked on the very first moment they talked. They consistently chatted on the set and even helped each other in their every scene.
He also confessed how much he appreciated it when Alexa was the first one to approach him since he was too shy then. But as they get closer and more comfortable with one another each day, he started to be makulit towards her, to ask her random questions, and to check on her from time to time. They also used to spend time together even during their free day in their lock-in taping by talking over their favorite tapsilog, mango shake, and pancit canton, or while doing workouts.
Alexa confirmed this, sharing that Gab always asked her if she’s okay, especially after doing a heavy scene, and allowed her to rest on his shoulders every time her head ached because of too much crying. She even jested that there could have been a possibility of her falling for Gab if their lock-in taping extended for another month.
“Nagkakaroon kami ng mga moment na nag-uusap kasi siyempre parang minsan whole day work, work, work. E kapag ako work, very focused ako, ‘di kami nakakapag-chikahan. So kapag rest day namin minsan, pupunta siya sa kuwarto namin ng roommate ko kasi sabay kaming magdi-dinner. Wala, kuwentuhan lang ‘yon ng past love life, career, [and] advice,” she recalled.
When it comes to the similarities they have with their respective characters, Gab admitted that just like Kiko, he’s also the type who would do everything in order to make the person he loves secured and happy, as well as being a diligent working student. On the other hand, Alexa sees herself to Hannah since both of them are independent young woman and outspoken if they know that what they believe in or fighting for is right.
Meanwhile, with regards to their first impression towards one another, Alexa revealed that she was initially hesitant to approach and talk to him as she found it difficult to do. Not because she’s being full of herself, but of the figuratively strong, tall walls she built in order to protect herself. But doing the 2020 film “Four Sisters Before The Wedding” made her realize that she has to also try being the one to initiate the connection.
“Mukha naman siyang mabait. Naka-ano pa siya no’n, naka-shades, naka-earphones, so sabi ko, ‘ay, parang ayaw makipag-usap nito. E kinulit ko, so mabait naman pala, pero mahiyain sobra. Nahihiya pa siya sa’kin no’n,” Alexa related.
On the other hand, Gab commented, “She was really nice and very friendly. Siyempre siya ‘yong unang nakipag-usap, kinausap niya rin kasi ‘yong ibang mga kasabay namin sa service tapos naging roommate. Sabi ko, ‘wow, sobrang bait pala nito’. Siyempre, si Alexa Ilacad na ‘yan, Goin’ Bulilit at ‘yong ibang shows niya. Siyempre very talented actress ‘yan and ilang milyong followers tapos nakipag-usap [sa’kin]. Sabi ko, ‘sobrang bait’. ‘Yon ang first impression ko.”
Aside from her kindness and congeniality, Gab also heaped praises to his love team partner’s impeccable acting prowess that she’s also able to share to him. He imparted, “Makikita mo kasi, especially sa kanya ‘pag nakatingin ako sa eyes, madadala ka talaga. Ang galing, wala talaga akong masabi. Gusto kong mapanood na lang nila talaga. She helped me a lot through this show na, siyempre me, being new in the industry, I always wanna ask questions to improve myself. Kahit sobrang pagod siya, [sasabihin niya] ‘ito ang kailangan mong gawin’. She was patient with me.”
DJ Jhai Ho also took this opportunity to ask how the up-and-rising young actor began his showbiz career. According to him, it was when he had his vacation here in the Philippines while waiting for a slot in a certain class he needed to take as a working college student in Las Vegas, Nevada. He got reunited with his former manager back when he was still doing commercials as a kid, who introduced him to Viva Artists Agency.
And just like any aspirants, he also had his own share of rejections, until he got discovered in the “The Wildest Wedding” episode of the 2017 controversial series Wildflower, wherein he played the best man of RK Bagatsing’s chararacter Arnaldo.
“Alam ko naman kasi na mahirap talagang maging artista rito. Hindi lang pag-uwi mo, artista ka na agad. Siyempre mas maraming magaling. Then if I don’t get the part, I’ll just say it’s not meant to be. If it’s really meant to be makukuha mo rin ‘yon. ‘Yon na lang ang [sinasabi] ko sa sarili ko. Hanggang naging patient ako, hanggang I just had faith in God, faith in myself,” Gab told the host when asked how he faced rejections.
Since he is the type of person who’s always willing to learn, he revealed asking for pieces of advice and questions about the industry from his Init Sa Magdamag co-actors. Thus, he’s really grateful that they were willing to impart their knowledge and experiences to him, especially Alexa who untiringly assisted him in their scenes.
As the conversation veered to love, DJ Jhai Ho quizzed both of them regarding the wildest thing they ever did for love. While Gab reminisced the instance when he bravely climbed up the two-storey home of the girl she was courting then in the US and got caught by her parents unbeknown to him, Alexa wasn’t able to give a response since she has been an obedient daughter to her parents.
When asked how they’re going to describe one another in one word, Gab refused to follow the instruction as he depicted her as “genuine, sweet, and caring. Meanwhile, Alexa simply defined him as “passionate” and elaborated, “Passionate siya sa work. Nakikita ko ‘yong willingness niya to learn and to grow as an actor, and kung paano siya bilang kaibigan. So, natutuwa ako sa kanya.”
Since they’re now a love team, the host asked Gab regarding the possibility of him pursuing Alexa or she getting to know him more. But he only gave an indirect answer, saying, “we’ll never know baka mabigyan kami ng movie or show after. And ngayong pandemic, mahirap na,” which made Alexa giggle a bit, and DJ Jhai Ho comment that we should watch out for it.
As they bid farewell to Alexa, Gab went on to share the recipe for the frozen bananas with chocolate protein smoothie with oats and chia seeds, which serves as a healthy meal replacement for him since he has to stick to a strict diet in order to maintain his fit physique. He may have a hard time fixing the blender, yet he’s still able to demonstrate it. He also disclosed the food included in his diet and a few tips on how to achieve a fit bod like his.
Aside from his acting career, the young actor is busy as well with his flask or tumbler business, which began this pandemic and inspired by his own experience of losing his flask every time he hits the gym.
Click on this video to see everything that happened in DJ Jhai Ho’s fun conversation with Gab and Alexa!
Don’t forget to catch them on Init Sa Magdamag, weeknights on Kapamilya Channel, Kapamilya Online Live, A2Z Channel 11, and iWantTFC.