Jane de Leon, Janella Salvador say friendship is ‘for keeps’

Charmie Joy Pagulong - The Philippine Star
Jane de Leon, Janella Salvador say friendship is âfor keepsâ
Jane de Leon (left) and Janella Salvador, who play Darna/Narda and Regina/Valentina, respectively, in the ABS-CBN series Mars Ravelo’s Darna, have formed a friendship that is ‘for keeps’ in real life.

Mars Ravelo’s Darna is set to conclude this week, but the friendship that Jane de Leon (Darna/Narda) and Janella Salvador (Regina/Valentina) have built over the course of filming will stay forever.

The two reminisced on how “awkward” they were at first to each other, being both “introverts,” but they developed a real-life friendship that is “for keeps.”

“We were not friends before we did Darna,” began Janella during the finale media conference for Mars Ravelo’s Darna held recently at ABS-CBN Building. “And we’re both introverts. So if we’re being totally honest, hindi kami agad-agad nag-click. Hindi naman kami nag-away but it was awkward at first.”

But they both made an effort to be able to break each other’s walls. They would bond together and exchange messages when not working. “‘You wanna hang out in my room?’ Ganyan, ganyan. ‘Let’s watch movie.’ Until eventually, we became comfortable with each other. And talagang I think our friendship is for keeps like hindi kami pang Darna lang.”

What’s good about their friendship is that they would help and support each other, as well as speak their minds on what is best for one another. Janella offered, “Like I think mas bagay sayo yung ganito. Like what looks good on her. We tell each other that because we want to give each other the chance to shine equally.”

“Our friendship is not for showbiz only,” Jane concurred. “Actually, all of us on set (we have formed a close friendship). Even Zaijian (Jaranilla), he stayed in my house and just went back to his home today. That’s the process (dynamics) of our friendship together.”

Jane also recalled that before the series, she and Janella would chance upon each other during ABS-CBN events and shows. “Hi, hello lang. We were not that close really. It became a challenge for us. (But at the same time), we also (realized) that not all people whom you’ve worked with would become your competition.”

The co-stars have become so close in real life to the point that Jane would sometimes babysit Janella’s two-year-old son, Jude.

Their chemistry is so strong that fans have been shipping them together and collectively named them as DarLentina and JaneNella.

“Nagpakatotoo lang kami ni Jea (Janella’s nickname). We’re just like this,” Jane commented on the “unexpected” pairing. “Magandang tingnan yun for us girls to show that we don’t have competition at all.”

“Even before the people started shipping us we were already joking about it on set like we really have a strong chemistry,” shared Janella. “There are several scenes na kinukuhanan kami ng reaction shots, ang tagal namin nakaganyan (eye-to-eye contact). Sobrang tagal so parang ayun.”

Janella felt honored to have the support of the LGBTQ community. “I didn’t expect that when I accepted this role but I think it’s one of the best things that came out of this, taking on this role,” she continued. “We gained supporters from the community. It’s nice to be able to represent the community because I feel like they don’t get represented well-enough especially in times like these. It’s already 2023 and I feel like they deserve to be heard and they deserve better representation. So I’m glad to be that for them.”

Given the chance, Jane and Janella are also open to do a girls love (GL) series.

After Darna, Jane will take a rest for the meantime before she takes on another acting project.

Meanwhile, Regine Velasquez was supposed to make a guest appearance in the series but due to “conflicting schedules,” it didn’t push through, said JRB Creative Production in a statement.

“It was not an issue to begin with,” clarified Jane. “Our schedule simply didn’t match with Ate Reg’s. I think that’s very normal for us artists. She is doing her rehearsals for her upcoming concert. And that time, I had my endorsement shoots and shows. We tried to adjust our schedule but sadyang hindi lang kami talaga pinayagan. But guys please don’t forget to support Ate Reg in her upcoming concert (this month).”

(Darna is available on weeknights at 8 on Kapamilya Channel, Kapamilya Online Live, CineMo, A2Z, and TV5. The ABS-CBN series produced by JRB Creative Production is also on iWantTFC and TFC.)


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