Jul 23, 2007

Aga Muhlach’s way of fighting temptation: Prayers!

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Star Cinema’s soon to be released drama "A Love Story" is about an illicit love affair that could question one’s belief on marriage and true love. It’s about succumbing to temptation, lust and lies which are the obstacles that usally present themselves in any love story or marriage.

It was then not surprising that Aga Muhlach, the leading man of the said film, was asked if he was ever faced with the temptation of another woman or having an extra marital affair.

And his reply was simply to fight the temptation. This sprung from his notion that being attracted to another person happens to everyone whether married or single.

"It’s really hard. It’s a struggle that every married people go through...you just have to ask yourself if it’s worth losing your family for this kind of love. Minsan kasi it’s worth it. But you have to give it to your family also...we really don’t know what can happen so we work on it everyday. I always tell my wife about it too and she thanks me for being the good husband that I am. I told her that we still have a long way to go as long as we have this dream of growing old together we have to keep on working for it. But this doesn’t stop me from getting attracted to women," he explained.

He added that married people could last up to 15 years and realize they’re meant for each other or they could find the persons they want to spend their lives with only after 15 years. But if ever he’s in Ian’s (his role in the film) situation, he described it as being "tuliro."

"Kasi hindi mo na malaman ang gagawin mo. Ang mga love affairs kasi minsan hindi mo na alam na nasa gitna nun. Minsan bubulaga na lang sa yo kasi nalaman na ng lahat. Hindi mo napapansin yung bawal na pag-ibig... hindi lang kasi sa lalaki masarap yan. It takes two to tango really... It’s always in my prayers at sinasabi ko sa wife ko that it’s a long way to go and we have to work on it and along the way we might stumble," he intimated.

In "A Love Story," Aga as Ian, is in a crossroad between doing the right thing for his marriage or doing what he thinks and feel is right for his extramarital affair. It is about finding the so-called love outside married especially with a luscious and younger woman (played by Angelica Panganiban) than his wife (played by Maricel Soriano).

According to its writer, Vanessa Valdez, the story answers a number of "ifs" in marriage — what if one realizes the one they’re married to is not the one they want to spend the rest of their life with or what if you meet the woman you want to make your wife only after you’ve gotten married.

"I think bago mo panoorin ito lahat tayo may pre-conceived notions or misconceptions of what marriage is or what’s a mistress and even kung ano ba talaga ang isang wife… minsan sa sobrang pagmamahal mo nagiging tao ka na ayaw mong maging just to hold on to this kind of love," opined Vanessa.

She also pointed out that the film shows how the characters’ lives were jolted and changed because of their love stories. And with regard to whether the whole film was what she envisioned from her script, she admitted to being overwhelmed by the result.

"This combination, Aga, Maricel and Angelica and with Maryo J. delos Reyes na piniga ang emotions ng mga artista, naging dramang kakaiba… my goal was not para ibagay to the actors ang story but to give the audience a different dimension of the perception of them as actors… from the rushes that I saw I’m very happy kasi ang huhusay nila sa roles nila. Binigyang buhay ang script in a way na hindi ko expected. Sobrang ganda ng pagkagawa!"

Aside from playing another sensitive role, "A Love Story" is also a story of "firsts" for the awarded actor. In this movie, he showcased a new body that the movieoing public never saw on an Aga Muhlach before. He has packed more muscles and is closing in to having hard washboard abs.

This new body was promped too by "A Love Story." Working with Maricel Soriano and Angelica Panganiban, it was but natural for him to shed off his "vacation fats" and get into his working form. For those who have followed his career, this has always been the case for Aga — gain work during vacation and then trim down for work. But this time around, he can attest that his new and improved body is here to stay whether he is filming or not.

"It’s about time. Kung hindi pa ngayon kailan pa. Nakakapagod ding maging malaki. Makakasama ko pa silang dalawa so dapat lang," smiled Aga.

The intriguing question then was how much did he enjoy his love scenes. But the actor only explained that his love scenes with Angelica were work and nothing more. In fact the way he described the numbers looked like they were "by the number."

"We try to work on our moves sa eksenang yun. Hindi lang siya basta kiss ng kiss because you also work with the camera and you work your movements… sa totoong buhay naman when you kiss you just don’t kiss kasi marami kayong ginagawa talaga," remarked Aga.

As for working with Maricel Soriano, he admitted that what his colleagues say about working with great actors like her were true. He found her very natural in terms of her acting and simply fantastic.

"A Love Story" is Star Cinema’s 14th Anniversary offering and it opens on Aug. 15 nationwide. Worldwide screenings is scheduled to happen on Aug. 23 to 28 in San Francisco and Los Angeles and Honolulu and in London and Ireland on Sept. 8 to 11, 2007.
Manila Bulletin

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