Together or apart, KathNiel stronger than ever
Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla are the celebrity ambassadors for PayMaya’s BalikBayad campaign, which encourages Filipinos to experience the mobile wallet that gives them cashback and other perks for cashless transactions

Together or apart, KathNiel stronger than ever

Nathalie Tomada (The Philippine Star) - February 15, 2020 - 12:00am

KathNiel fans will be happy to know that Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla are stronger than ever as a reel and real-life couple.

After taking a break from working as a tandem last year, they’re coming back with a bang with projects together throughout the year.

The STAR sat with the two recently to talk about one of the first projects for 2020, an endorsement deal for PayMaya’s BalikBayad campaign, which saw them side by side anew in an action-packed and fun TVC that has all the feels of a ’90s movie, complete with goons and the iconic Pinoy kontrabida in Rez Cortez. The video about how the online payment account can be used for everyday transactions instead of paying in cash, will remind fans how sorely missed their love team is onscreen.

“I’m thankful (that we’re chosen to be the new endorsers of) PayMaya, and I think tama lang naman because our fans are millennials and the product, I think, is very millennial. They will benefit from it,” said Daniel.

When accepting brand endorsements, they have to believe that it’s a good product. Kathryn explained, “Ayaw mo naman ini-endorse mo lang kasi binayaran ka nila. Gusto mo i-endorse kasi ginagamit mo. Lalabas kasi yun eh. People can tell if you’re just doing something, not because you believe in it, but because you’re its endorser.”

Asked how they’re using the app, Kathryn teased Daniel, “Yung totoo, Daniel, san mo na nagagamit?”

Joining them at the official launch of the campaign were PayMaya founder and CEO Orlando Vea (second from left), president Shailesh Baidwan (second from right), head of Marketing and Growth Mark Jason Dee (rightmost) and head of Brand and Marketing Services Heidi Garayblas.

Daniel said he has done money transfers on the app. “I’m always not at home. So, for example, may kailangan akong pabili sa bahay ko, like now, dahil meron tayong nauusong nCoV ngayon, nagpabili ako ng alcohol kasi pag may pumunta sa bahay ko, tadtarin mo sarili mo ng alcohol, medyo praning kami. So yun ang No. 1, ang bilis ng pabili ko. Ang hirap kasi, paano mo pa mapapadala yung pera kung kunwari nasa trabaho ako, papauwiin ko pa yung driver ko? Ngayon yung driver ko, pwede siya matulog (laughs) kasi napadala ko na yung pera. It’s about convenience, time and safety.”

“Di ko pa siya nagagamit sa Mobile Legends (laughs),” Daniel added, noting though he knows what Kathryn uses PayMaya for. “Online shopping, of course, but she still needs to teach me how to shop online.”

For Kathryn, online shopping is a form of R&R. “I admit that because that’s what I do to de-stress. Kunwari pagod ako sa trabaho, tapos mag-online shop ako, para gaganahan ako magtrabaho pa ulit. Yun ang nagpapa-balance sa akin.”

“Na-gi-guilty siya eh,” Daniel said.

“Yeah, because if I don’t work and I shop online, I kinda feel bad. But when I feel I deserve it, my god, I really shop online. You will be surprised with what I buy. Nagugulat nalang si Mama pag may dumating na package na pag binuksan niya, ano ‘to? Shoes, houseware, for my dogs. Sometimes, I buy for Daniel. Recently, I bought him tea (cups). Even my socks, I buy them online because I don’t get to go out that much.”

The conversation moved to Kathryn’s Everyday Kath vlog launched last month. If you watch her YouTube channel, which already has over 1M subscribers to date, you will perfectly understand why Kathryn enjoys the convenience of online shopping. The reality is, as popular celebs, even grocery shopping is a luxury they only get to do abroad where they can be regular folks and don’t get mobbed.

“Do you consider yourself a vlogger?” Daniel asked Kathryn during this interview.

“I don’t really consider myself a vlogger. I’m still an actress who sidelines (in vlogging), because yes, vloggers do it for a living,” replied Kathryn.

“And kami ginagawa namin siya just to share,” Daniel said.

“So ano tawag dun?” Kathryn asked Daniel.

Daniel quipped, “Sharer (laughs).”

Interestingly, it was not Kathryn’s idea to venture into vlogging.

“You know, I’m surprised myself that I enjoy doing it because it was DJ’s idea that I vlog. Daniel is not much of an online person but he’s addicted to YouTube videos. He was inspired by those YouTube videos. Then it so happened, we were going to Iceland. That was our first vlog. We didn’t expect na magiging tuloy-tuloy na.”

Daniel, for his part, said, “At that time, wala kasi akong ginagawa kung di mag-research ng motor (laughs). Kasi pag may gusto akong bagay at gusto ko tumingin ng review, I go to YouTube. Until (I thought to myself) parang ang saya nito ah. Then I suggested to Kathryn, vlog tayo, Bal. One reason also, she’s a natural. Talagang walang problema sa camera. Ako naman si Boy tago sa camera. Ako pa nag-suggest, ang ending ako ang walang vlog (laughs).”

While it seems like they’re just opening up a part of their private lives while having fun, a lot of thought actually goes into each video. “Siguro yung quality na binibigay mo sa tao. For example, for the videos, (DJ and I) are a bit meticulous with the music. Then, we really talk to the editors about the execution of the videos because for me, if you were to make a video, then better make it good so that whoever watches it, the video is worth their time,” said Kathryn of her own standards for content she puts out online.

“Another is make sure you don’t step on anyone’s toes. Share what’s happening to you, even on Instagram or Twitter, but be true to yourself. That what they see is the real us.”

Kathryn has never reacted to a basher because “comments on my Instagram are filtered. At least, if you don’t see (the rude comment), you don’t get sad, you don’t get triggered, you don’t react.”

“Tama lang yun,” added Daniel (who mused that he will only return to the social-media game if he remembers his Instagram password). “At saka wag sila magpakain masyado sa mga social media kasi ibang-iba ang totoong mundo sa social media. That’s what I tell people. For example, they’re addicted to social media, then sometimes they feel bad because a lot is being said about them. But in the real world, meron ba talagang ganun? Na lalapit at sasabihin sa ‘yong ganyan? Don’t make it your world.”

KathNiel also established their first “joint” business, the barbershop Barbero Blues, to add to exisiting (separate) businesses. “We’re very new to this, we’re still learning, and the important thing is, we’re willing to learn,” said Kathryn, who keeps track of every peso that comes in and out, mindful that the money is not theirs alone but also goes to the salaries of employees.

What other personal goals are they setting for 2020?

Kathryn said it’s time that she knows how to handle her finances more. “I want to be more hands-on with my finances. My mom used to take care of everything. But now, I’m slowly taking charge because feeling ko masakit siya sa ulo. She’s helping me how to handle the money, expenses. I think I’m ready this year. Little by little, I’m learning how to do it because I’m also turning 24 this year.”

“I hate it but it’s part of adulting. I can’t avoid it,” she added.

Daniel, for his part, said, “Personal goal ko ay lahat ng trabaho ko ay maitawid ko ng maayos at maganda. Dahil sa dami naming gagawin ngayong taon sinet-aside ko muna yung mga personal ko.”

At first, the actor was shy to share, but Kathryn asked him, “Why are you not sharing about your movie? Ako na magsasabi, he just had his last shooting day.”

Kathryn was proudly referring to Daniel’s solo movie, Whether The Weather is Fine, which tells of the devastating aftermath of Supertyphoon Yolanda. He stars alongside ABS-CBN boss Charo Santos-Concio in the Carlo Manatad film.

 “I feel really good about it because ibang-iba ang tono ng pelikulang ito. Iba yung nag-handle ng production, usually kasi Star Cinema, ito iba. Very refreshing and I had the opportunity to work with Ma’am Charo, thank God for that experience. At first, it wasn’t Ma’am Charo, then it was her. Iba yung nerbyos ko, nag-sho-shooting na kami nun at biglang si Ma’am Charo na kasama ko. Pero naitawid naman namin at sarap ka trabaho ni Ma’am Charo. You learn a lot from her. I’m just very excited for people to watch the film because it’s different. I just wish the film will make it to international film festivals. That’s our goal.”

Asked how it felt to act minus Kathryn, he said, “Siempre iba na wala si Kathryn. Pero dun sa estado ng pag-shu-shoot namin, good thing wala siya kasi mahihirapan siya. Puro putik yun because it’s a film about Yolanda.”

“Grabe, baka isipin nila na maarte ako,” Kathryn reacted.

“Hindi ko sinasabi yan, pino-protect lang kita kasi ako rin kasi maglilinis ng paa niya (laughs). But I always tell her about it, how amazed I am with the production design, set and director, tone, trip ko yung ganun eh.”

Next, they will topbill the movie After Forever (directed by Cathy Garcia-Molina) and the teleserye Tanging Mahal.

One thing’s for sure, their shocking but very mature decision of not accepting projects as a love team in 2019 for individual growth has served them well. Daniel reflected, “We had to do it. Both of us needed to ‘refresh’ ourselves, para pagbalik namin excited kami mag trabaho ulit. Kasi dire-diretso, nag-marathon kami ni Kathryn ng lahat (since Princess and I in 2012). So the break gave us a fresh start and now we’re more eager to work together again. Iba yung (naging) mindset namin, parang gusto namin may patunayan pa lalo. That’s what you get when you take a break. Yun ang binigay sa akin nung time na yun. Ang sarap.”

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