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Alden Richards on #AlDub, Yaya Dub & flying planes

WILL SOON FLOURISH - Wilson Lee Flores (The Philippine Star) - October 3, 2015 - 10:00am

‘Growing up, I wanted to be a pilot but my mom wanted me to be an actor.’

Unlike before when I’m often interviewed by media about economics, business, writing, baking and politics, I was recently interviwed by GMA network on the pop culture of Philippine love teams in showbiz, especially on the phenomenal AlDub — actor Alden Richards and  the Philippine’s “Dubsmash queen” actress Maine Mendoza, nicknamed “Yaya Dub.”  Alden is also now the No. 1 music artist in iTunes Philippines.

On Sept. 26, this love team broke the world record for the highest number of tweets in Twitter for an event in one day, the hashtag  #ALDubEBforLOVE had 25.6 million tweets in 24 hours. This surpassed the global tweet records of America’s Super Bowl XLIX of 25.1 million tweets and the Video Music Awards of 21.4 million tweets, despite the US having the highest number of Twitter users by a huge margin.

Before his AlDub fame, Alden started by joining male modelling pageants and reality TV shows, then he became a talent of GMA 7. I first met him in 2014 with his then Carmela TV drama series co-star Marian Rivera, but I had to rush to a business meeting after interviewing Marian and missed talking to the new actor Alden. Marian then described Alden: “Alam naman nating lahat na dedicated, magaling na artista, at mabait (We all know that he’s dedicated, a good actor and a nice guy).”

Despite his now super hectic daily schedule as TV star, commercial endorser, singer and now shooting a movie for the 2015 Metro Manila Film Festival, Alden Richards recently agreed to give me this exclusive interview:

PHILIPPINE STAR: Why do you think your AlDub love team is so popular?

ALDEN RICHARDS: I think it is popular because of a lot of things —  it’s the first “Kalyeserye” on Philippine TV, it has a unique concept and it imparts great Filipino values to its audiences like respect for elders and respect for women.

To what do you attribute its success?

Marami pong tao ang part nito eh (In the success of the Kalyeserye, a lot of people are part of this), from the staff to our bosses at Eat Bulaga and GMA, and also to the Aldub Nation who’ve been supporting us since day one.

How has the AlDub fame changed your life?

The effect of AlDub on my life — well, it’s been life-changing. When I have mall shows in Manila or out of town iba ang recognition ng mga tao sa akin, sobrang lakas, sobrang warm (the recognition people give me, it’s so strong and very warm), it is unexplainable. I know that ang daming mga ibang artista sa showbiz (there are many artists in showbiz) but for them to spend their free time to watch me perform, it’s so overwhelming, nakakataba ng puso (it overwhelms my heart).

Being part of Kalyeserye is a blessing to us, members of Eat Bulaga, and to GMA as a whole. I like to think of it as us being able to touch other people’s lives, yes there is kilig, there is comedy but there are lessons we can bring home and think about and share with our neighbors. It’s not only my life that has changed but also other people’s lives because of Kalyeserye.

How many commercials do you now have? Are there more coming?

Yaya Dub (Maine Mendoza) and I have two commercials airing right now and we hope there will be more to come.

Can you share any information about the role or story of the AlDub love team in your MMFF movie project?

To quote Lola Nidora (Wally Bayola), we will share the info “sa tamang panahon” (at the right time). We will have a press conference  to announce the details of the movie.

Why do you like Yaya Dub?

She seems like a very fun person.

What is your health or physical fitness regimen in terms of exercise, sports, sleep, diet?

I wake up at 4 a.m. to work out. I work out with a trainer. I do circuit training. On the days that I can’t do this, I do a seven-minute workout at home using an app on my phone. I also try to get eight hours of sleep. I try to eat in moderation, I cut down on carbs, fat, and I eat more veggies. I don’t have any vices. I don’t smoke and I only drink very moderately during social functions. When I have the time, I like to go mountain climbing, trekking and biking. I also like extreme sports like bungee jumping.

Your original dream was to be a pilot, why? Do you still hope to someday fly a plane or own your own plane?

I have always been fascinated by pilots and planes. Growing up, I wanted to be a pilot but my mom wanted me to be an actor. Now I am enjoying what I do and I see myself in the showbiz industry for a long time.

What are your hobbies?  How do you relax when you have the time?

I love to spend time with my family, I really miss mountain climbing. I’ve been to Mt. Batulao and Pico de Loro. Mountain climbing is my stress-reliever.

Favorite kinds of music, books, movies, or favorite titles you remember?

One of my favorite movies is 50 First Dates. I just find it so romantic that a guy would do that every day for the girl he loves. My favorite singer is Ed Sheeran, and now I really like the songs from our Kalyeserye like God Gave Me You. I also listen to Josh Groban.

How many years have you been a model and joining pageants and TV realty contests before? What have you learned about joining contests and about losing too?

What I’ve learned about joining contests is that if it’s your time, it is your time. Perhaps it wasn’t God’s will for me to enter showbiz before through the reality show route.

 I auditioned for Alakdana, the soap with Louise delos Reyes. The projects came one after the other. My advice to people who want to become an artista would be: just keep on trying, work hard, and improve yourself. Your big break will come. Enjoy the journey, that’s what makes the destination all the more sweet.

What was the saddest or most difficult crisis in your life? How did you recover?

When my mother died, I had to be strong for my family and support my family. I recovered by praying, working hard, focusing on my studies, and just trusting God so much more. I am living my mom’s dream by being in showbiz. I never knew that I would enjoy it as much as I do now, it’s such a blessing to be able to live out your mom’s dream for you and have so much fun and fulfillment too.

Are you a religious person?

More than being religious I would like to say I have a personal relationship with God. I wake up every morning to pray. I try my best to follow God’s will in my life. I acknowledge Him in everything that I do.

Any message to your many fans and to the fans also of Yaya Dub?

Thank you so much for supporting Kalyeserye and AlDub! There are lots of surprises in store for you guys, so please keep watching Eat Bulaga on GMA 7 and please support our upcoming MMFF movie and other projects too.

What is your message for Yaya Dub, and your wish for both of you in the future?

I hope to get to know you more! It’s great working with you every day!

* * *

Thanks for your feedback! Email willsoonflourish@gmail.com or follow WilsonLeeFlores on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and http://willsoonflourish.blogspot.com/

ACIRC ALDEN RICHARDS ALDUB EAT BULAGA KALYESERYE MAINE MENDOZA NBSP NOW STRONG TIME YAYA DUB
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