This year’s Magpasikat week for It’s Showtime’s 14th-anniversary celebration had a great, nostalgic start, thanks to Jugs Jugueta, Teddy Corpuz, and Vhong Navarro’s poignant performance that paid homage to Filipino legendary comedians and infused with an AI (artificial intelligence) element.
The production number made live audiences, hurados, and probably viewers at home feel pure magic as they once again witnessed these badly missed Pinoy comedians come to life on screen through the power of AI. What started with loud cheers little by little cascaded into tears and ended with happy smiles.
It surely took a village and the trio pulling out all the stops to mount that deeply heartwarming act. We at ent.abs-cbn.com had the chance to talk to Jugs, Teddy, and Vhong backstage. Check out what they had to say about their Magpasikat 2023 experience.
“Nakakahinga na kami nang maluwag. Nawala na ‘yung kaba. Makakakain na rin tayo ng masarap na pagkain,” Vhong smiled when asked how they were feeling. Teddy added, “Nawala na ‘yung tensyon namin. Fulfilling ‘yung pakiramdam na tapos na kami. Tapos sobrang lupit ng mga komento sa amin ng mga hurado, sobrang nakakataba ng puso.”
The trio is utterly satisfied with their performance, as it went exactly how they envisioned. “Goal namin ‘yung nakakatuwa, may kurot sa puso, at sa dulo nakakatawa,” shared Vhong.
The gentlemen went out of their comfort zones for Magpasikat 2023, with Vhong conquering his fear of singing live, and Jugs showcasing his dance moves. Meanwhile, Teddy added that another challenging part was communicating with the families of these legendary comedians for permission to use their images.
As he puts it, “Nakaka-frustrate din ‘yung, siyempre, ang dami naming gustong isama na mga comedians. Marami kaming hindi rin naisama kasi nga kailangan ipagpaalam sa family. Ayaw naman namin i-bypass ‘yung family nila. So, gusto namin sana isama ‘yung lahat halos kaya lang hindi talaga pwede.” He added that they wanted to invite more veteran comedians, aside from Nova Villa whose presence added more heartwarming nostalgia to the presentation, but they couldn’t for some reasons.
Team JTV shared that they didn’t have a hard time conceptualizing the whole idea of an AI-powered show. “Isa ‘to sa mga pinaka-sobrang bilis namin naisip. No’ng naisip namin kaagad yung konsepto ng AI, ano na, ngayon na, pa-reserve na natin ‘yung AI na element sa Magpasikat,” disclosed Teddy, to which Vhong added, “Pati rin ‘yung tribute. Kasi baka may mag-tribute rin na iba, hindi mo na magagamit ‘yung tribute na konsepto.”
“Kami ‘yung pinaka-maagang nagpasa na grupo,” Teddy further revealed.
During their preparations, they kept themselves motivated by looking into these comedians' legacy. “Darating tayo lahat do’n, eh, Ang tanong, ‘May gagawa ba sa atin nito?’ Ang sarap kasi balikan, na makilala ulit natin sila kasi sila ‘yung nagsimula [ng comedy]. Kung wala sila, wala kami,” Vhong imparted. Teddy seconded, “Sana kami rin sa It’s Showtime na 14 years na tayo, sana dumating ‘yung panahon na hindi niyo kami makalimutan.”
Asked to rate their performance from 1 to 10, Jugs gave it a score of 11; Vhong, 12; and Teddy, 13. “Siyempre, grupo namin ‘to,” quipped Vhong. But, jokes aside, they believe that they were able to put on a great show. “For us, we have the best team, we have the best concept,” said Teddy. “Feeling namin the best ‘yung crew namin, ‘yung staff namin. Ibibigay namin sa kanila talaga kasi sila ‘yung nagbuo talaga. Para mabuo ‘yung konsepto namin, sila ‘yung nagpakahirap ma-contact ‘yung families, sa mga AI. Kami, ideas.”
Teddy was proud to say, “The best team. So, 10 ang score namin.”
Catch all performances of It’s Showtime hosts in this year’s Magpasikat for their “1-4 Ever” anniversary celebration, with Olivia Lamasan, Tirso Cruz III, Jett Pangan, Barbie Forteza, and Apl.de.ap as hurados.