The Diamond Star Maricel Soriano is Taray queen no more

In the set of her latest movie, The Heiress of Regal Entertainment, Marya says she took the initiative to warm her younger co-actors up to her. “Aware naman ako lagi kapag bagong artista, first time na makaka-trabaho ako, may mga gano’n silang naiisip,” explains Maricel. “Hindi nila ako basta malapitan, nahihiya sila dahil sa, ’yon nga kung sino ako, o kaya s’yempre nai-intimidate...kaya aaminin ko, minsan ako ang nage-effort. Ako nagsisimula, nakikipag-usap sa kanila.”

Photos: Instagram

In the set of her latest movie, The Heiress of Regal Entertainment, Marya says she took the initiative to warm her younger co-actors up to her. “Aware naman ako lagi kapag bagong artista, first time na makaka-trabaho ako, may mga gano’n silang naiisip,” explains Maricel. “Hindi nila ako basta malapitan, nahihiya sila dahil sa, ’yon nga kung sino ako, o kaya s’yempre nai-intimidate...kaya aaminin ko, minsan ako ang nage-effort. Ako nagsisimula, nakikipag-usap sa kanila.”

The Diamond Star, who, for the longest time is tagged as the “Taray Queen,” has definitely mellowed. Gone is her unapproachable reputation. She no longer blocks off what she deemed as insignificant questions with piercing one-liners. Her taray mode, these days, is just an act; done to elicit laughter and not animosity.

Age and maturity may have something to do with it. Or contentment with the life well lived.

But today indeed, Maricel—who is also fondly called Marya or ’Nay Mary in showbiz— is a picture of friendliness and good vibes. 

And her younger co-stars should be grateful they are now dealing with this version of Marya. 

But because she knows that her taray reputation precedes her and she remains intimidating, the Diamond Star reveals she makes the effort now to reach out to the younger set.

In the set of her latest movie, The Heiress of Regal Entertainment, for instance, Marya says she took the initiative to warm her younger co-actors up to her.

“Aware naman ako lagi kapag bagong artista, first time na makaka-trabaho ako, may mga gano’n silang naiisip,” explains Maricel. “Hindi nila ako basta malapitan, nahihiya sila dahil sa, ’yon nga kung sino ako, o kaya s’yempre nai-intimidate...kaya aaminin ko, minsan ako ang nage-effort. Ako nagsisimula, nakikipag-usap sa kanila.” 

“Mas madali kong mapapagaan ang loob nila, e,” she goes on. “Oo, para ma-kampante sila. Kakapain mo rin sila kase, mga bata yan, e. So, gagawin ko silang komportable di ba? Minsan hahanapin ko sila para maki-chichi. Hahaha!”

Still laughing, she adds: “Alam mo naman ang lola mo chi-chi…o e, para happy lang ang bonding namin sa set. Hindi naman ako nananakot kaya ako ’yong kinatatakutan. Mabuting gawin nating masaya kaming lahat sa set. Gagaan pa ang trabaho di ba?”

But at 54, Marya, who still possesses this mala-sutla skin, is only toning down her feistiness. Workwise, she still exudes the hungriness of the young. 

“Meron pa, anak, meron pa akong mga roles na gustong i-portray lalo na kapag alam kong maganda, na may importanteng sasabihin sa manonood,” she says.

That is why when she agreed to play Luna, the elder mambabarang in the horror film The Heiress, she did so because she wanted to explore the darkness of the character and bring that to light.  

“May poot na pinanggagalingan si Luna, e,” says Maria of her mambabarang character. “No’ng bata kase ako [as Luna] nagmahal ako ng buong-buo. Pero ’yong lalaki niloko ako. Gumanti ngayon si Luna. Pinatay niya ’yong minahal niya dahil niloko siya.”

The veteran actress says doing horror movies is harder than most film genres. She says that a character’s every nuance and expression has to be precise and genuine to gain an equally genuine reaction from the audience

“Kapag horror, dapat mapakita mo ’yong tension kung saan papunta ang eksena. Dapat talaga pataas nang pataas ang takot na ibibigay mo sa manonood. Kailangang aralin mo nang mabuti. Kase kapag pumalya ang execution mo, hindi nakakatakot ang dating mo...O, so nanggulat ka…tapos? Gano’n lang? Nakakatawa ang labas. So, pagta-trabahuhan mo talaga.”

Such statement brings us to the fact that Marya indeed remains hungry as an actor. She still wants to manipulate the cameras while attacking character after character. 

“Ay, anak, basta maramdaman ko na hindi lang maganda ang role kundi may gustong sabihin sa manonood, tatanggapin ko ang role...ang pelikula ng walang pag-iimbot.”

And that’s music to our ears. 

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