A role close to Kristel’s heart
DIRECT LINE - Boy Abunda (The Philippine Star) - April 8, 2017 - 12:00am

Kristel Fulgar is giving life to a character that is too close to reality in Can’t Help Falling in Love, topbilled by Daniel Padilla and Kathryn Bernardo. She plays the best friend of Kathryn’s character Gabriela.

If you’ve been reading showbiz news lately, then you know that Kristel and Kathryn are BFFs (read: Best Friends Forever) in real life. They are childhood friends whose closeness remains intact despite the demands of showbiz. They have each other’s back, so to speak. It is also the kind of friendship the two visibly display in the Star Cinema summer movie offering directed by Mae Cruz-Alviar.

“Viel is always there to support Gab and she always makes it a point to help her no matter what,” said Kristel of her similarity with the character. “I am boyish here if you noticed in the trailer. And although this is the first time that I am playing one, I find it comfortable doing it since I am not much of a girly type, dun ako sa boyish side. It also helped that during shootings, direk Mae was there to remind me not to go overboard with my acting.”

It also served as an advantage for Kristel to work with people closest to her. “I am confident about this project not just because I know that it will be another KathNiel hit movie but also I really felt comfortable working with them, especially Kathryn who is my friend since childhood. Marami na din kaming pinagsamahan, that’s why our bond gets stronger through the years.”

Kristel and Kathryn both entered showbiz at a young age. Kristel initially tried her luck in the Munting Miss U search of an ABS-CBN noontime show then someone suggested her to audition in another show. “It was funny because I thought I auditioned for a singing contest but I found out it was for a TV series of Nora Aunor. They were looking for someone who could play the young Carol Banawa, the daughter of Nora in the teleserye. I was fortunate to get the role because I can sing and act, and then Star Magic got me.”

It was in 2005 when Kristel became part of Goin’ Bulilit. “With the types of roles that I’ve already played, I think I can convincingly give justice to whatever it is that will be given to me — whether it is bida or kontrabida; rich or poor. Besides, I am not choosy when it comes to work because I believe that portraying various types of roles is one way of honing my craft,” said Kristel who described herself as a “super simple girl who is serious in everything that I do.”

But there was a time, Kristel confessed, when the thought of giving up her career crossed her mind. “I really wanted to stop (acting) after I graduated from college (she finished Communication Arts at the University of Sto. Tomas) kasi gusto ko magkaroon ng matatag na trabaho since showbiz is not forever. But when my vocal performances went viral, I took it as a sign that I should stay. Besides, many are aspiring to be actors and actresses and I am lucky to be here, so why quit?”

Her supporters, the 22-year-old actress added, inspire her to go on. “They are the ones who keep on pushing me to do my best. Of course, I am also dreaming about getting a lead role someday and if that happens, that would mean a bigger opportunity for me to show more of what I can do…and definitely, I will be thankful for it.”

Apart from acting, Kristel has been doing covers of foreign and OPM songs, most of them have already gone viral on social media. “I personally choose the songs and upload them on my channel, very hands-on po ako doon,” said Kristel who recently uploaded on YouTube her and Marlo Mortel’s cover of Celine Dion and Peabo Bryson’s Beauty and the Beast which instantly gained an almost half a million views.

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