The super-heroine role was sixteen years in the making for her!
After waiting four years, Kapamilya star Iza Calzado can finally reveal the fact that she will be part of ABS-CBN’s much-awaited series revival of “Darna.”
Laurenti Dyogi, ABS-CBN Head of TV Production, broke the news during a virtual interview that also happened to take place on Calzado’s 39th birthday.
“Iza will officially be part of the Darna TV series that will start shooting last quarter. I want to announce what exactly she will play but I don’t want also to spoil the announcement,” Dyogi said per ABS-CBN News.” But we promise Iza will play a dream role.
“This one is an important role for Iza, it will be fun and an important role in the series,” he added.
Though Dyogi kept the part private, a report from PEP.ph revealed that Calzado is slated to step into the shoes of the “original” Darna who will be responsible for passing on the powers to the next heroine, which will be portrayed by Jane De Leon.
Responding to Dyogi’s big reveal, Calzado countered with a reveal herself by admitting that she has been attached to the project since as early as 2017. “Movie pa ‘yun, ang dami nang dumaan, changing of seasons and people and nandito pa rin ako,” the award-winning actress disclosed.
Calzado was pertaining to a scrapped “Darna” movie project in 2015 which originally had Angel Locsin penciled in. However, supposed director Erik Matti had to opt out due to a back injury, and the role was passed on to Liza Soberano. He would be replaced by Heneral Luna director Jerrold Tarog.
But then the project hit another snag as Soberano would later suffer a finger injury on the set of her 2019 primetime series “Bagani” that pushed her to back out as well.
The project finally ran into a positive a couple of months later, when Star Cinema managing editor Olivia Lamasan finally announced that Jane De Leon has landed the role.
But come 2021, it saw another downer as Tarog informed Twitter of his departure from the project due to scheduling conflicts.
Then, last year, ABS-CBN made the call to turn the “Darna” movie into a TV series instead. This came after Congress resolved not to renew the network’s franchise.
But for Calzado, the opportunity had been lingering for much longer than that. Her name was first brought up to play the Mars Ravelo character as early as 2005, when Dominic Zapata and Eric Quizon were set to direct a “Darna” series for GMA. The part, as we all know, eventually went to Angel Locsin.
Despite setbacks, Calzado remains grateful and happy for the opportunity even after four years. She also takes the timing of the role to be “divine,” as today’s trying times call for a role model whom people can look up to.
“I’ve been grateful since that moment. I’ve done some trainings without giving out all the stuff. It feels like it’s been such a long journey to get here and the role I’m going to play is more meaningful than what I could have played before,” said Calzado.
Why Darna is important now more than ever, it’s because we also need to recognize the hero inside all of us, the Darna within, the hero within,” she added.
ABS-CBN’s “Darna” TV series, due to debut in 2022, is set to begin production this September.