Since becoming a Kapamilya in 2007, Jake Cuenca has made our hearts race and flutter in the many romance-drama and action-thriller telerseryes he‘s starred in. The actor looks back on his past series in this episode of Kapamilya Chat.
Playing the “Teleserye Hularawan Challenge,” a photo of Jake’s previous onscreen characters will flash and he will have to guess in which series the character appeared. The game also doubles as a timeline of his journey as a Kapamilya.
The first photo was from Sana Maulit Muli (2007), his first-ever primetime series after signing with ABS-CBN. He played the bad guy Brandon in the Kim Chiu and Gerald Anderson- starrer. He would develop a good friendship with the two and work with them in many more teleseryes later.
In 2008, he got his biggest break as a Kapamilya via action series Palos where he played the titular character Giancarlo Caranzo, a secret agent. “I owe a lot to this show. I owe a lot to Dreamscape and Sir Deo [Endrinal]. It really put me to where I am today, eh. So, I’m really thankful for that,” said Jake.
Then, Tayong Dalawa came in 2009. “This is the show that convinced me that I really wanted to become an actor.” It changed his definition of a true artist, “Before, when you’re younger, it’s normal na when you get into showbiz, you equate success with popularity, no variety.”
But when he did Tayong Dalawa where he got to act with world-class actors like Agot Isidro, Cherry Pie Picache, Baron Geisler, and all, he realized “it’s going to take more than popularity to get you through these sequences.”
“I want to be an award-winning actor… I became more of an actor than a celebrity,” he said of how Tayong Dalawa shaped him.
In 2013, he got to work with Director Chito Rono for the first time via Maria Mercedes, keeping the series on his list of memorable projects. Ikaw Lamang with Coco Martin, Julia Montes, and Kim Chiu is also one of his favorites because of the ‘biopic’ feels and he won an award for this show.
He reunited with Kim and Gerald in Ikaw Lang Ang Iibigin, in which he portrayed a triathlete. Jake used the 'method acting' technique in this series. Therefore, he lived like an athlete and won a real triathlon competition before the teleserye ended.
Los Bastardos (2018) is a memorable one as well, in that he enjoyed the bond with his co-actors. They were all guys in the series. Playing the eldest in the brood, he carried his being ‘kuya’ from the set to real life, “Bago ko isipin sarili ko, iniisip ko muna lahat… I’m always worried about everyone. I guess the role also, ganu’n siya kasi talaga, eh. I guess na-carry over ko ‘yung pagiging kuya.”
The moment he steps on set, Jake Cuenca is no longer himself but the character he portrays. From looks to nuances, he makes sure to create new personas in every teleserye or movie he stars in. After his believable act as a politician in Viral Scandal (2021), he impressed yet again with his chameleon acting style as he morphs into the roguish mobster Eros in The Iron Heart.
Asked about his process as an actor, Jake said he adapts theatrical methods that take 2 to 3 months of preparation once the production requires a completely different Jake.
“If you give me 2 to 3 months, I can guarantee you something you’ve never seen before,” he said, as he detailed the rigorous process he had to undergo before every portrayal.
Catch Jake as he plays the evil Eros in the action-drama series, The Iron Heart, airing weeknights, on Kapamilya Channel, Kapamilya Online Live, and A2Z.