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Bela Padilla says it takes her 45 minutes to prepare for kissing scene with Tony Labrusca.

Huwag mo akong i-'Glorious'!'

This was how Bela Padilla warned Tony Labrusca before they shot their kissing scene for the new mystery-drama series, 'Sino ang May Sala? Mea Culpa.'

'Glorious,' Tony's controversial May-December love story with Angel Aquino that featured the two in steamy love scenes, had just been shown in the streaming app iWant at the time he was shooting his kissing scenes with Bela for the series.

'I felt awkward because I knew the production crew kept making jokes about it. I would give him the look as if I was warning him: 'Sige lang! Subukan mo!'' said Bela, laughing.

'Good thing Tony is a true gentleman. He would ask me how he could make me feel comfortable, or up to what height can we bring the kissing scene to.'

For that scene alone, it took Bela 45 minutes to get ready, she admitted. 'I don't like it when people get touchy with me. I'm more confident doing crying scenes. All the while I was thinking, 'It was good that I wasn't the one doing all those scenes in 'Glorious.''

Dual roles

However, Bela did say that Juris, her character, has a 'different personality' in the version that is being shown on iWant compared to the one we see on television. 'All of us, we have some sort of dual roles because we are also providing content for iWant. We will be showing some special scenes there that will not be aired on TV,' she explained.

At the recent special media screening of the show's pilot week, Bela said she was pleased with the positive reaction she and Tony received for that particular kissing scene. 'I got nervous for 45 minutes! I'm happy to have gotten a good response for that. At least I know that the scene worked, that we were able to connect with the audience,' she pointed out.

Bela said she found working with Tony to be 'so refreshing. As for the 'kilig scenes,' I would always make him take the lead. He obviously has more experience in that aspect,' she quipped. 'We help each other. He would ask for my advice on scenes that he thought were too heavy, then I would tell him what I thought should happen there.'

Passion, dedication

The actress said that because of the series, she also got to appreciate the passion and dedication of their costars Ivana Alawi, Kit Thompson, Ketchup Eusebio and Sandino Martin, who play her law school batch mates in the series.

Bela also clarified that Tony wasn't a replacement for JC Santos, who had been part of the original cast but decided that he needed to take a break from TV work.

'Dreamscape actually offered me several roles in different shows and this was the one that truly spoke to me. I have never played a character who is both a protagonist and an antagonist. This is a first, so I hope the audience finds me effective,' she said.

At the time she sat down with the creative team to discuss this show, there were no other cast members yet, said Bela. Lead actress Jodi Sta. Maria was still doing another series then.

Bela described Jodi as someone 'insightful.' She added: 'I love working with her. In this show, not only do I learn as an actor from my peers, but also as a person. Jodi is very discerning as a person. I'm happy that I've witnessed this phase in her life. I get to absorb her happy energy.'

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:May 6, 2019
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