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Paulo Avelino toils for things versus being handed it on silver platter

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Paulo Avelino has no pain-no gain mentality when it comes to success.

Paulo Avelino (mb.com.ph)

Paulo Avelino

In fact, despite his stature in the industry, he has no qualms auditioning for roles the way he did for the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) entry “Ang Larawan.”

“Maganda kasi ’yung nakakapasok ka sa pelikula dahil tinabraho mo, hindi dahil pinili ka dahil sikat ka o ano man,” he said in an interview at the launch of the maiden issue of Revitalized Davao Lifestyle Magazine of which he is the cover story.

The 29-year-old model-actor plays Tony Javier in the movie. He is proud to have made a musical film as it’s part of his bucket list.

One of the most challenging part for the “StarStruck”alumnus is the singing. After all, “Ang Larawan” producer, stage actress and singer Celeste Legaspi, is said to be a “perfectionist.”

It must’ve been hard, we said.

“Actually, mabait si Mrs. Celeste puro tawanan lang. Inaasar niya ako ’pag minsan, ’pag sumusobra (ng panglo-loko) sinusuhulan nila ako ng pagkain,”said he, then turning serious, added, “Siyempre bilang baguhan dapat nakikinig ka sa mas nakakaalam.”

In preparing for the role, Paulo underwent voice training.

Note that Paulo is a recording artist, too. He released his eponymous album under Universal Records in 2012.

Still, it wasn’t easy singing in the film, he said.

“Kumbaga ibang mundo ’to,” he said. “Na-a-apply mo pa rin ’yung alam mo sa pag-arte pero this time may pag-kanta at hindi ito ’yung pagkanta na favorite mong kanta pwede mong kantahin, kung saan ka magaling ’yun lang, ito iba – theatrical.”

Paulo as Tony Javier (mb.com.ph)

Paulo as Tony Javier

It’s a pleasure for Paulo to be part of “Ang Larawan,”an adaptation of the musical with the same title based on National Artist for Literature Nick Joaquin’s three-act English play “A Portrait Of The Artist As Filipino” and libretto written by National Artist for Theater and Literature Rolando Tinio.

“Sobrang saya kasi ang tagal na rin naming ginawa ’to, parang hindi rin ito ’yung pelikula na minadali. Kumbaga inabot rin ito ng taon dahil ang daming kinailangang ayusin sa music, sa grading, sa scoring at parang binuo ito ng mga beteranong tao hindi lang sa larangan ng teatro kung hindi rin sa musika,” he said.

Does he worry that “Ang Larawan” is competing with movies starring the likes of Vice Ganda, Jennylyn Mercado and Vic Sotto?

“Well, para sa akin, magbibigay rin naman kami ng ibang putahe sa pelikula. Kumbaga andiyan ’yung mga paborito mong putahe pero minsan nagke-crave ka ng iba. So ito nandito ’yung ‘Larawan,’” he said. “Hindi lang naman ito tungkol sa kantahan, may kinalaman rin ’to sa kasaysayan natin and at the same time musical.”

Shower of blessings

After “The Promise Of Forever,” Paulo will do “Asintado” initially titled “Victims Of Love” co-starring Julia Montes, Lorna Tolentino, and Aljur Abrenica.

He is set to do drama film “Kasal”with Bea Alonzo and Derek Ramsay.

Then there’s his other starrer, the Philippine historical epic film “Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral” due next year too. Paulo plays the titular character Gregorio del Pilar, the youngest general during the Philippine–American War.

A scene from ‘Ang Larawan’ (mb.com.ph)

A scene from ‘Ang Larawan

As mentioned earlier, Paulo is doing several projects for RDL. He is, in fact, the face of its papaya soap.

Because of this, Paulo is careful to maintain fair skin color as “kutis mo ’yung produkto mo.”

The actor is the type who makes suggestions on how to make the products he endorses sell well.

“For the products I endorse, sinasabi ko rin ’yung parang what we can do para ibenta na hindi awkward sa aking gawin. Parang hindi hard sell para at the same time nag-e-enjoy ako sa ginagawa ko at napapakilala ko sa publiko na walang kahirap hirap at hindi pilit.”

Asked if he texted Coco Martin about his latest endorsement, Paulo said he did “pasintabi.” Recall that Coco is the company’s first celebrity endorser.

“Nagpasintabi lang kasi six year dala ni Coco ’yung brand so parang inalagaan niya rin for six years and parang feeling ko napamana sa akin. So medyo ingat rin ako at gusto ko ring ingatan dahil ayoko ring sirain ’yung binuo ni Coco,”he said.

Does he find Coco’s shoes too big to fill?

“Of course it is. Coco Martin is Coco Martin. And parang medyo nakakahiya na ako ’yung pumalit or papalit pero mabuti na rin siguro na ako dahil kumbaga nakita ko rin kung paano inalagaan ni Coco ’yung brand, parang gusto ko ring ituloy.”

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