Barbie, David bring partnership to the big screen

Leah C. Salterio - The Philippine Star
Barbie, David bring partnership to the big screen
‘That Kind of Love’ stars Barbie Forteza and David Licauco.

MANILA, Philippines — After the successful TV partnership of loveteam David Licauco and Barbie Forteza that started in the period teleserye, “Maria Clara at Ibarra,” that wrapped up last year, it was just a matter of time before a project on the big screen was subsequently offered to them.

The loveteam brings their undeniable chemistry for the first time to the big screen in the romantic-comedy, “That Kind of Love,” megged by director Catherine Camarillo, her sophomore outing slated to be shown starting July 10, following “Chances Are, You and I.”

Barbie plays Mila, while David is Adam as they display their chemistry anew, this time on the big screen in “That Kind of Love.” Two people who are brought together by the quest of finding love.

Barbie, who’s turning 27 in July, plays Mila, a dating coach and psychologist, an independent and successful woman. She tries to help Adam, a successful and rich businessman in search for a special someone. But what happens if he falls for her, instead?

The young loveteam flew to South Korea last February to shoot some scenes there. “That Kind of Love” was an entry to the Jinseo Arigato International Film Festival.

The film dropped its teaser trailer recently and many are anticipating the July playdate of director Catherine “CC” Camarillo project, written by her daughter Ellis Catrina Camarillo.

Even if they are not romantically involved, Barbie and David have managed to make their screen partnership work. As most everyone knows, Barbie is romantically involved with actor Jak Roberto. Their seven-year relationship does not hinder the BarDa loveteam and is even going for the better.

“I don’t really believe in the perfect timing,” said Barbie. “Even our loveteam really came unexpectedly. I think ‘timing’ is not the success of the BarDa loveteam. We are always just taking risks and working together very well and hopefully, the audience will respond positively.”

In terms of their loveteam, it was never about the timing. “It’s always the chemistry and the good partnership we’ve built and with ‘That Kind of Love,’ I feel like showing a feel-good rom-com is a good timing. Let’s say you’re stressed with work, this is the genre that you will really look for. So you can sleep well at night.”

The BarDa loveteam in Korean traditional wear as they shoot romantic scenes in the foreign country.

Deciding on this film, Barbie’s relationship with Jak was never a factor. “It’s always clear to me that my personal life is separated from my professional life,” she said. “At that time this project was offered to David and I, the BarDa loveteam was picking up.”

“So David and I decided the film is a good follow-up project to ‘Maria Clara at Ibarra.’ This came before ‘Maging Sino Ka Man.’ We shot this last year in Korea. Everyone said yes right away. Everyone got on board right away. We were all very excited to do the film,” she added.

“From direk Cathy, Pocket Media Productions, David and I, we were all looking forward to starting the film already. It took a year before this gets to be shown. We wanted to watch the film already. Nakaka kilig siya talaga.”

After two years of consistently working with David, Barbie describes their onscreen partnership as “comfortable.”

“Every time we work together in a project, we become comfortable with each other on and off-cam,” Barbie admitted. “Almost every day, we work together. So during off times, during set-ups, we get to talk to each other.”

“I learn about his routines, his passion in his businesses. I get to know him as a person outside his matinee idol persona that he’s being built up as. Nakakatuwa because he’s a real person who’s not trying to impress or be someone he’s not,” she continued.

“It’s nice to really know someone like him from our industry. What you see is what you get. He’s naturally funny. Especially when he’s not trying to be funny, nakakatawa talaga siya. He’s very interesting to talk to. He has a lot of interesting insights.”

Last May, Barbie and David even went to Canada to entertain fans there. They were with fellow GMA Sparkle artists Rayver Cruz and Julie Anne San Jose, Bianca Umali and Ruru Madrid in Calgary and Toronto.

David Licauco (left) and Barbie Forteza (right) with ‘That Kind of Love’ director Catherine ‘CC’ Camarillo in Seoul, Korea.

Thirty-year-old David is one of the most successful male stars in the local entertainment scene today. His loveteam with Barbie, although not anchored on any romantic relationship, is undoubtedly an enduring partnership.

The fast-rising David, who turned 30 last June 15, will star in his reunion project with Barbie, the period drama, “Pulang Araw,” slated to be aired on Netflix in July. The groundbreaking series also features Dennis Trillo, Sanya Lopez and Alden Richards.

David, who successfully ventured into the restaurant business, thought that he would turn his interests into being an entrepreneur and leave acting.

“But ‘Maria Clara at Ibarra’ came and my successful loveteam with Barbie started,” he said. “Other projects followed and even endorsements for both of us, so how can we say no? I’m super thankful for this partnership, loveteam and friendship. Nakakatuwa at nakaka-iyak.”

In terms of how David is perceived as a person, who comes from a comfortable family, is sporty and has his own businesses, he does not seriously think about it. “People will think you don’t have problems,” David said. “You are not emotional, nonchalant, stoic in a way, with hardly any emotions.”

“Actually, I am a softie inside. When I’m in a relationship, I’m the only one who’s crying. I’m clingy. Grabe akong mag-effort. Kausap ko lang ‘yung kapatid ko, umiiyak na ‘ko. When I was younger, I controlled those kinds of things,” he shared.

“Some girls thought a guy crying is a sign of weakness. But I’m older now. More mature. I don’t really care what other people will think about when I cry. As long as I’m not doing anything bad, just be myself.”

When David was only 22, he was a “hopeless romantic” who followed a girl he was courting in Korea. He slept in a public toilet waiting for the girl. “I didn’t have money,” David recalled.

“The second day, I rented an affordable room. I still didn’t have money at that time. I even bought her flowers. I was courting her. I wanted to prove, this is what I could do. This is what I could offer. I’d move mountains for you. But sadly, I didn’t end up with that girl.”

Although his role in “That Kind of Love” is something close to David in real life, he still didn’t find it easy to do the film.

“I’m used to teleseryes where you always do one takes,” he said. “I really worked on my patience for ‘That Kind of Love’ because I’m not used to doing films.”

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