Elmo shows impressive acting in A Soldier’s Heart

Boy Abunda - The Philippine Star
Elmo shows impressive acting in A Soldier�s Heart
Elmo Magalona is 2nd Lt. Jethro Mondejar, who enters the military to fulfill his father’s wish of seeing his son following in his footsteps instead of following his own passion for painting.

Avid fans of Elmo Magalona took to social media accounts Twitter and Facebook and online streaming platform YouTube their admiration for the actor’s impressive acting in A Soldier’s Heart, that promises to “valiantly fight in an all-out war for justice and peace” until its finale episode on Sept. 18, airing on Kapamilya Online Live and Kapamilya Channel.

Elmo is 2nd Lt. Jethro Mondejar, who enters the military to fulfill his father’s wish of seeing his son following in his footsteps instead of following own passion for painting. Netizens began tweeting praises for Elmo after his highly emotional confrontation scene with his dad, Gen. Victor Mondejar, played by Ariel Rivera.

Recently, a video was uploaded on YouTube showing a compilation of his five best acting moments in the said weeknight action-drama series. Elmo also received positive feedback about his affecting scenes with Rommel Padilla and Gerald Anderson in previous episodes. Such online viewers’ comments as, “Acting award for Elmo, please,” “Elmo’s acting has improved,” and “Good job, Elmo! Thank you, ABS-CBN for giving him the role,” truly validated the actor’s ability on acting out a complex character. In previous reports, Elmo admitted that breathing life to a soldier was a fun kind of challenge for him.

“I keep all my projects to the best of my ability,” said Elmo in reaction to the netizens’ remarks. “Kung ano ‘yung makakaya ko (ibibigay ko) but yeah, I can say that I’m super happy also and I’m super glad na part ako ng Soldier’s Heart kasi hindi talaga… I don’t think a lot can pull off what we did or ‘yung pinakita sa show. I also want to give credit to the writers and our directors.”

Elmo and the rest of the cast had to undergo rigorous, real-life military training to completely absorb and fully understand what it is like to be in the shoes of military personnel.

“I have this high regard for the soldiers and it’s a lot different when you see them upclose and personal – you’ll discover how tough their responsibilities are and they’re very challenging because no one knows if you gonna come out alive. It’s a blessing for us to be able to portray soldiers.”

He added that his role put a lot of pressure on his shoulders in the beginning of the series. “Honestly, it was surprising also for me to accept the role of a soldier because I think this is my first na talagang physically-oriented ‘yung role ko and I didn’t think na makakayanan ko. But due to the training, nakaya naman and again, it’s all thanks to the storyline.”

Director Richard Somes equally commended Elmo for pulling off the role no matter how physically and emotionally draining his character required him to do scene after scene.

Elmo (fourth from left) with his A Soldier's Heart co-stars Carlo Aquino, Nash Aguas, Jerome Ponce, Gerald Anderson, Yves Flores, Sue Ramirez and Vin Abrenica.

“I’m super happy of how it worked. I’m super happy that Tito Ariel portrayed as my dad in the show because I got to work with him in another show. So, we were comfortable doing our scenes and, in an instant, it felt like we already knew what to do.”

Having enjoyed the company of co-actors and production team, Elmo said it helped lessen the burden of taping under the new normal set-up. Most of the scenes were shot in Tanay, Rizal and Elmo was able to adjust to some changes in the work set-up.

Elmo admitted that, like everyone else, he didn’t expect the effect of COVID-19 pandemic. “Everyone was caught unprepared for this kind of situation but honestly, I think our training (here) was timely. My mindset now is to only put priority to what I need today or for the next week.”

(Don’t miss the last few episodes of A Soldier’s Heart weeknights at 9:20.)

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