WATCH: Xyriel Manabat impresses with reenactment of iconic roles in Acting Challenge

Apparently, a lot of avid Kapamilya viewers have missed seeing former award-winning child star Xyriel Manabat as her first-ever appearance on ABS-CBN Entertainment’s Hotspot Live! on Thursday, October 1 had raked in over 4000 views!

Thus, she has nothing but deep gratitude to those who still remember the iconic teleserye roles she used to portray – such as teenage Lily Cruz in Wildflower (2017), Madam Anna Manalastas in 100 Days To Heaven (2011), Momay in Elena M. Patron’s Momay (2010), Agua and Bendita in Rod Santiago’s Agua Bendita (2010) – and those who continue to support her even though she’s not been active in showbiz for almost four years now.

PHOTOS: Former childstar Xyriel Manabat is now a stunning young woman

“Nakakatuwa po. Nakakataba po ng puso na ‘di po nila mabilis kalimutan ‘yong mga role na ginampanan ko. Parang isa po ‘yan sa mga achievements ko po na kahit medyo lie-low po [ako], focus po sa personal life, nakakatuwa po na ‘di po sila nakakalimot sa mga ginampanan ko pong role dati. So maraming, maraming salamat po sa lahat ng nakakaalala pa rin at sumusuporta. Maraming salamat po,” she expressed.

On the recent issue she got involved in

While the unending love, support, and recognition makes her feel over the moon, the recent issue, however, definitely saddened and hurt her as she found herself getting controversial for the wrong reason. Adding salt to the wound was when she discovered that unruly netizens weren’t just contented in writing rude captions and comments to her photos, but modified those as well.

“Paano po nila ‘yon nagagawa? Wala po ba silang nanay? Wala po bang babae sa pamilya nila? Kahit nga po ‘di babae e. Parang kung matino ka pong tao, bakit mo po masisikmurang gawin ‘yon sa kapwa mo kahit na sabihin po natin na ‘di sa babae o sa menor de edad e? Parang, bakit po gano’n ‘yong mindset ngayon na ‘di pa rin po natatapos ‘yong gano’ng issue? So siguro po, as minor, siyempre ngayon lang po ako naka-experience ng gano’n,” the 16-year-old actress told host DJ Jhai Ho.

Then she added, “Siguro po, magandang point din po na nagpahinga po ako kasi mas nakikilala ko po ang sarili ko and mas nabuo po ako as a person. Na kahit sabihin n’yo pong minor lang po ako sa age, siguro masasabi ko po na I’m matured enough to face them po and to solve this kind of situation na alam ko pong mas gumagana po ‘yong utak ko, ‘yong mga natutunan ko po from experience sa pelikula, kaysa po do’n sa mga taong ‘di ko po alam kung bakit mas makitid pa po sa bata ‘yong utak para po gumawa ng mga gano’ng bagay.”

Xyriel may be hounded with negativities, but she remains positive and strong in facing the challenges that life has been giving her because she knows that she’s not doing anything wrong. When asked how her family and friends confronted the situation, she disclosed that they initially tried to evade the topic and acted normal, then eventually tackled in their conversations. They may have different mindsets and opinion regarding the issue, but she’s confident that they always got her back and that she has a super strong support system.

She went on to differentiate bullying and sexual harassment and gave a piece of advice to fellow victims like her, saying, “Huwag po kayong matatakot na mag-standup, lalo na po kapag alam n’yo na ‘di po kayo ang may kasalanan. Wala po sa inyo ang kasalanan. ‘Wag na wag po kayo matatakot na mag-voice out dahil ‘di po kayo nag-iisa. Marami po kayong kasama at isa na po ako doon.

Then she continued, “At lalo na po sa victims ng sexual harassment, babae man po, lalaki, matanda, bata, or minor kagaya ko, huwag din po kayo matatakot na ipaglaban po ‘yong karapatan n’yo kasi nasa sa inyo po ang bawat right para po ipaglaban ‘yong dignity na meron po kayo. Wala po talaga sa inyo ang mali so huwag na huwag po kayong matatakot. Kasi ‘pag natatakot po kayo, lalo n’yo lang po sila binibigyan ng superiority para magpatuloy sa ganito pong situation. Huwag po nating ino-normalize.”

The former child star proceeded on encouraging bashers, naysayers, and rude netizens to let anyone on social media to be just themselves and help them boost their confidence instead.

On missing the spotlight

Being out of the spotlight for almost four years, Xyriel, who’s currently in Grade 11, imparted that she greatly misses acting, which had been her life for eight years. But, believe or not, she confessed feeling ashamed whenever she’s asked to partake in role plays at school! Since she’s a big star, she revealed having younger schoolmates who ask her about life in showbiz, which is totally different from her classmates to whom she’s already very close with.

Having worked with some of the most respected and famous thespians in local showbiz, she revealed still dreaming of working with the Philippine Queen of Soap Operas Judy Ann Santos-Agoncillo, to whom she already had the opportunity to work with in 100 Days To Heaven when the latter did a cameo role. When it comes to her dream role, she said that it would be portraying a character with disabilities or internal challenges.

And since we all missed seeing her act, DJ Jhai Ho had her take the “Acting Challenge”, wherein she had to re-enact the scenes from her well-loved iconic teleseryes 100 Days To Heaven, Momay, and Agua Bendita.