Alfred Vargas on Shayne Sava and Althea Ablan: “They are the future best actresses of their generation.”
Alfred Vargas works for the first time with Camille Prats in GMA-7’s ongoing Afternoon Prime series, “AraBella.”
In the series, Prats plays the role of Roselle, a mother who lost her child after an incident. She then adopts Ara (Shayne Sava) as her own. But on the night of Ara’s adoption party, Roselle’s missing daughter Bella (Althea Ablan) returns.
Vargas is one of Prats’ leading men with Wendell Ramos.
In a recent interview with FreebieMNL, Vargas had only good words for Prats, who is making her drama comeback after five years.
Vargas says, “First time namin mag-work together and she’s a pleasure to work with. Napakahusay niya.”
What Vargas admires the most is how Prats manages to stay in character even if she’s no longer the focus of the camera. He recalls, “Minsan nga, kahit nakatalikod yung camera sa kanya, umiiyak pa rin. Ganun siya ka-dedicated. Kami kasi, di ba, kapag hindi naman close-up, hindi naman kailangan, okay lang kasi minsan reserba mo ng emotion. Talagang tine-temper mo rin para meron pa sa susunod na eksena. Pero siya talagang siguro, naipon niya ng five years!”
Vargas is happy to be part of Prats’ comeback in TV dramas. “Ako, masasabi ko, I felt it also that she gave it her all. Yung comeback niya na ito, and to be part of that, to witness that is so amazing; it’s an honor.”
In the teasers, the characters of Prats, Sava, and Ablan are given the highlight, as well as Klea Pineda who plays the show’s villain. But Vargas promises that the roles of the leading men are also exciting.
“Siyempre, di naman natin maha-highlight yung bigat ng role ng mga kababaihan kapag walang kalalakihan din doon. Basically, love triangle kami nila Wendell, Camille, ako. Baka nga love square pa with Klea. Kasi rivals talaga sila Camille at Klea, ‘tapos kami ni Wendell, talagang magbabakbakan kami, pinag-aagawan namin si Camille.”
In terms of who is the kontrabida between the two leading men, Vargas only drops hints.
“Hindi ko masabi kung kontrabida pero ang masasabi ko, gray characters to spice up the whole drama. So, mahihirapan si Camille pumili kasi she will be forced into circumstances na mahihirapan talaga siya pumili.”
Vargas also enjoyed working with Ramos, with whom he last worked in the 2008 TV adaptation of Sharon Cuneta’s 1991 film, “Una Kang Naging Akin.”
“Noong nagkita kami, ‘Bro!’ Kasi siya dati, ‘Bubble Gang,’ ako sa ‘Nuts Entertainment.’ May mga sitcom kami, teleserye before. Siguro nauna lang siya sa akin ng a few years pero kami kami yung magkaka-batch sa GMA before, di ba.”
Alfred Vargas’ good words for Althea and Shayne
Alfred Vargas also has praised Althea Ablan and Shayne Sava, who both play the title role.
Vargas has admired Sava’s sincerity in acting her role as the oppressed Ara. “Yung dalawang bata ang gagaling, yung mga papuri ko sa kanila on my Instagram, ang galing talaga. Si Shayne kasi, yung lalim at saka yung sincerity. Ilang taon pa lang sila, mga bata pa lang sila. Noong ganung edad ako, hindi naman ako ganon mag-isip dati! Pero siya, may lalim at saka may sincerity.”
As for Althea, Vargas was impressed at how she handled her bida-kontrabida role. “Si Althea, may range kasi ang hirap ng role niya—kontrabida na hindi, spoiled na street smart na mamahalin mo, yung ganon. Mahirap ma-achieve yun. Nagagalit, nakikipag-away, at the same time, sweet ‘tapos nagmamahal, ta’s mahal niya yung lolo’t lola niya. In the end, naghahanap lang pala siya ng pagmamahal ng isang ina. Ang galing, nagulat ako doon sa dalawang bata.”
READ: Shayne Sava Hints At Catfight Scenes With Althea Ablan In “AraBella”
Of the two young actresses, who are both homegrown Sparkle artists, Vargas declares: “They will go very far. They are the future best actresses of their generation.”
Sparkle is formerly GMA Artist Center, the talent management arm of GMA-7. Prats is also managed by Sparkle.
Taping first before showing
“AraBella” also serves as Vargas’ semi-comeback in doing a full-length teleserye after finishing his term as congressman.
Vargas’ recent teleserye appearances, “Magkaagaw” (2019), “Legal Wives” (2021), and “Unica Hija,” (2022), were all guest roles and he ended up getting killed in the pilot week.
He quips, “Meron ngang mga comment, ‘Buti dito di ka [mamamatay].’”
Vargas then expounds, “Pero kasi naman that time, wala naman akong choice kasi yung oras, talagang that’s the only time I can give. Pero ngayon, since konsehal na lang tayo, ang dami nating oras talaga to do other things. Kasama na doon yung spending time with my family.”
But then, the Kapuso actor really enjoyed doing his role as Ariel. “Ako, na-enjoy ko kasi hindi rin naman ganun kabigat yung role ko dito, although main character ako. Na-enjoy ko yung role ko as tatay-tatayan ni Shayne Sava, as manliligaw ni Camille, at the same time, meron akong a few challenging scenes.”
For Vargas, his experience “checks all the boxes” of everything that he wants in a show. He says, “Na-enjoy ko, ‘tapos na-challenge ako, ta’s maganda yung role ko. Kasi yung mga heavy drama, na kela Camille, e, at saka yung mga bata. So, ako, meron akong kaunting drama at saka kaunting action scenes, may car chase, kidnapping, mga ganon.”
Another aspect that Vargas enjoyed doing for “AraBella” is that the whole series was already taped before getting aired.
He says, “Ako, personally, gusto ko kasi you finish all the business first. Na-tape niyo na lahat, ‘tapos relaxed ka na lang. Tapos yung mga raket na pwede mong attendan, puntahan because of the show, mapupuntahan mo na. Kasi dati, kapag T-TH-S yung taping mo, hindi mo na mapupuntahan yung mga fiesta, mall show ng sabado. Pero dito, lahat pwede mong puntahan. So, in a way, professionally speaking, mas marami kang magagawa. Mas mapapakinabangan mo yung show mo habang umeere.”
But then, when the show started airing, he realized: “Ganun pala yun kapag pinalabas na yung show mo ‘tapos tapos na mag-taping, parang gusto mo pa ring mag-taping!”
Vargas also promises that things will even get more exciting for the show.
“Ang galing ng GMA creatives kasi noong nagbabasa ako ng script, sa dami dami ng script na binabasa ko, sobrang unpredictable. Surprising siya at saka ang daming revelations until the end. It’s an afternoon soap and alam niyo naman, Kapuso network, it is really known for Afternoon Prime, di ba?”
READ: Alfred Vargas Gets Starstruck With “Pieta” Co-Star Nora Aunor
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