After his StarStruck Kids stint in 2004 when he placed First Kid Prince (or first runner up if you must) to Ultimate Male Survivor Kurt Perez, Miguel Tanfelix made several appearances in various Kapuso drama series like “Biritera,” “Makapiling Kang Muli,” “Aso ni San Roque,” “Paroa: Ang Kuwento ni Mariposa,” “Love and Lies” and “Mga Basang Sisiw.” This year, GMA Network is set to launch him on his first ever titular role in a teleserye with a challenging character – a 15-year old boy with mental incapacities who will become a beacon of hope and inspiration to his town mates and prove that miracles exist with the help of his “Tukayo,” a Sto. Niño incarnate to be played by child star David Remo.
During a pocket presscon at Dulcinea in Timog last Tuesday, April 29, Miguel aired his gratitude to the management of GMA-7 for making him one of the network’s rising stars for 2014. Below are the excerpts of his interview where Miguel talked about the primetime drama, his “special” role and his thoughts about the competition.
On being entrusted with a titular role for the first time:
“Nagpapasalamat po ako sa production po sa GMA kasi binigyan po nila ako ng chance. Masarap po, masarap po sa pakiramdam, sobrang saya ko po, sobrang excited at siyempre po may halong kaba, may halong pressure kasi eto po ‘yung first.
“Sobrang thankful po ako sa GMA at kay Lord po talaga kasi binigay niya po ang chance na ito at kailangan ko po talagang pagbutihan kasi ‘yung mga expectations ng mga viewers kasi parang hindi siya normal na role kaya kailangan ko talagang pagbutihan at sulitin kasi hindi ito basta-basta binibigay sa isang artista po na tulad namin.”
On his role as a boy with mental incapacities:
“Medyo may pagka-special [child] po ang role ko dito. Tapos meron akong kaibigan dito si David Remo, tapos katukayo ko po siya kasi parehas kami ng name. ‘Pag may problema po sa lugar namin parang kami ‘yung gumagawa ng solusyon tapos marami po akong naging friends, sila friends ko po sila [Bianca Umali, Renz Valerio and Julian Trono]. Kaya po Niño kasi may koneksyon po siya kay Sto. Niño kaya medyo religious di ba po, although hindi literal na miracles ang ipapakita namin dito, halimbawa po may isang taong nawala ang kapit kay Lord, kami ni David Remo, kami ‘yung gagawa ng ‘miracle,’ hindi literal, dahil ibabalik namin ‘yung loob niya para kay Lord. Kunwari tag-tuyot sa lugar namin, kami ‘yung gagawa ng miracle para magka-tubig uli, hahanap kami ng bukal ng tubig pero hindi po siya talaga literal, hindi magical, magbibigay ng pag-asa at inspirasyon.”
On how he prepared for this role:
“Nag-prepare po ako, workshops. Tapos nanood po ako ng related movies like ‘I Am Sam.'”
On Niño facing tough competition in the TV ratings game:
“Opinyon ko po blessing po ito e, kung binigyan ka ng project, just do your best kasi po kung ginagawa mo naman ‘yung best mo mapapansin naman ng tao ‘yun e. I mean nandyan na sila, big stars ‘yung kalaban parang nagsisimula pa lang kami pero diyan din naman sila nagsimula di ba? Ako po ha, kapag ginawa mo ‘yung best in acting tapos kasama na rin ang promo parang maaabot din namin ‘yung ganun e basta think positive lang.”
Supporting Miguel for his role as Niño are Tom Rodriguez as Jonathan, Niño’s hardworking father; Katrina Halili as Hannah, Jonathan’s wife and Niño’s kind-hearted mother; Lotlot De Leon as Leny and Neil Ryan Sese as David, adoptive parents of Niño; German “Kuya Germs” Moreno as Kapitan Pete, the Baranggay Captain of the community; Dante Rivero as Don Pedro, Hannah’s father; Bianca Umali as Angelica, Niño’s bestfriend; Gerald Napoles as Obet, David’s friend; Ces Quesada as Mrs. Santos; Luz Valdez as Tia Epang, David’s aunt and Lola V’s bestfriend; Renz Valerio as Rafael, Niño’s brother; Julian Trono, as Mat-Mat, one of Nino’s friends; Vincent Magbanua as John, Nino’s friend; and Ms Gloria Romero as Lola V, Niño’s carefree grandmother.
Under the direction of Maryo J. delos Reyes, “Niño” is set to premiere on May 27, 2014 under the Telebabad block of GMA-7.
Take a sneak peek on Miguel Tanfelix in the teaser trailer for “Niño” below:
For more updates about Miguel, follow GMA Artist Center on Twitter @artistcenter and follow Miguel himself: @Migueltanfelix_.