“Isa Siyang Diesel”: Angelica Panganiban Reveals Why Working With Coco Martin Felt Special

What would you do if you realized one day, after so much heartbreak, that simply being in love is no longer enough?

This is the dilemma that Angel, Angelica Panganiban’s character in her upcoming movie “Love or Money,” faces as her ambition of becoming rich gets in the way of her getting a happy ending with Leon, portrayed by Coco Martin, despite how they feel for one another. What happens then is an attempt by Leon to get a second chance at love and shake Angel out of her ambition that he’s convinced is compromising her happiness.

love or money angelica panganiban coco martin

The story may seem run-of-the-mill at first but it’s the combination of Angelica and Coco, two seasoned actors who’ve cemented their place in local showbiz as among the best of the best, that make “Love or Money” a film worth anticipating because you know that you will definitely be surprised, delighted, and emotionally touched.

“Naunang nakwento kay Coco [‘yung film]. Siya talaga originally ‘yung gustong gawan ng film ng Star Cinema and gusto nila ng makakapartner niya na siguro kayang gawing lighter yung pelikula,” Angelica shared with When In Manila in an exclusive interview regarding how their tandem came to be.

“Siguro kailangan nila ng medyo baliw din na leading lady para mabali yung pagiging image ni Coco na macho, na action star. So nung naisip nila ako, parang ayaw nang pakawalan ni Coco yung idea na ako yung leading lady.”

Angelica admitted that she initially wanted to turn the offer down after having just finished her movie “Unbreakable” with Bea Alonzo which took a toll on her physically and emotionally and led her to want to take a break from doing projects for a few months. However, it was the thought that she may not be able to find a similar opportunity again that convinced her to push through with it.

“Kaya lang naisip ko rin baka hindi na dumating ‘yung opportunity na ganun sa akin kasi hindi naman ako bumabata diba? Parang pwede nga ‘yan ibigay kina Kathryn, kina Liza, ‘yung mga alam naman nating mas in demand kaysa sakin. So parang noong sakin siya in-offer, hindi ko maprioritize ‘yung pahinga,” she said.

It was also the fact that Coco personally requested for her to be his leading lady that urged her to do the project despite being highly intimidated by it.

angelica panganiban love or money interview

(ALSO READ: WATCH: Coco Martin Proposes to Angelica Panganiban in Teaser Trailer for New Film)

“Syempre kahit naman sinong nasa industrya manginginig pagka nirequest ka ng isang Coco Martin. Sinong mag-aakala?” she expressed. “Siguro kaya ayoko siyang gawin kasi parang grabe anong ineexpect nito sa akin, ano sa tingin niya ‘yung gagawin ko, at tsaka bakit siya naniniwala sa kalokohan ko o kung paano ko laruin ‘yung trabaho o ‘yung character na binibigay sakin. Takot ako na baka hindi ko mameet ‘yung expectations niya.”

“But at the same time, nagtiwala naman din ako kina Direk Mae, kina Inang, and parang ‘yun nga hindi ko mapalagpas din ‘yung experience and alam kong marami akong matututunan dito sa project na ‘to,” she added.

She even compared her costarring with Coco to collecting another “trophy” symbolizing her achievement of having showbiz’s top actors as her leading men. She gushed about how she was amazed by their dynamic while filming, particularly with how she was able to witness the funny side of Coco that fans haven’t seen in a long time.

“Nakakakilig siyempre na maging leading lady ng isang Coco Martin,” she shared. “Masarap kasi nakikita natin si Coco na serious actor ‘e—action, heavy drama sa ‘Ang Probinsyano’—and kahit ako parang namiss kong makita si Coco sa ganitong klaseng pelikula na parang ang gaan-gaan niyang kasama, ang kalog niya.”

“Isa siyang Diesel. Matagal siyang uminit pero pag uminit siya, dire-diretso tas sobrang smooth na ng takbo ng trabaho.”

In terms of what makes Angel in “Love or Money” different from Angelica’s previous roles, the 34-year-old actress said that it’s her level of confidence that she gave her all for this film, that she is free of doubt and uncertainty regarding her performance, and that she’s proud of the end product.

“Love or Money” will teach us all about being grateful for the important things in life and, in Angelica’s own words, embracing the feeling of being in love no matter what the circumstance.

“Pagdating sa love, hindi mo mapipigilan yung love. Pag nandiyan na, nandiyan kahit na ano pa sigurong paninindigan mo sa buhay, ano pang paniniwala mo, ano pa yung inaarte arte mo,” she said.

“Once na tinamaan ka na ng love, that’s love! And kailangan mong iembrace ‘yon. And wala nang mas sasarap sa pakiramdam na nagmamahal at minamahal ka rin pabalik.”

(ALSO READ: LOOK: Angelica Panganiban Finally Introduces Her New Boyfriend)

Directed by Mae Cruz-Alviar, “Love or Money” will be available to stream on KTX.ph, iWant TFC, and Sky PPV starting March 12, 2021.

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