by Pablo A. Tariman


Bicolano actor Jericho Rosales reprised his real life Typhoon Ondoy role in 2009 when he (along with wife Kim Jones) picked up his surfboard to rescue flood victims in Marikina City.

When asked how he would compare today’s situation to Ondoy, Rosales said: “Wala akong data or facts pero in a sense na hindi natin nalaman na tataas ng ganito [ang baha], mas malala ito para sa akin. Kasi parang paggising ng mga tao, napuyat sila kagabi, paggising nila ganyan na. Maraming taong hindi nakaalis. Based on nangyari na before tapos caught by surprise na naman tayo na ganito, I think in that sense medyo mas malala ito.”

At a time like this, Rosales said it is still best to remain calm and just be better equipped for when something like this happens again in the future.

By his own admission, Echo has logged more than 18 years in showbiz after he was discovered in a noontime show. It led to his lording it over the teleseryes.

Who can forget his appearances in “Pangako Sayo” and “Sana’y Wala Ng Wakas” with Kristine Hermosa. He got acting citations for his role in “Baler” also directed by Meily and was soon lured to doing indie films like “Alagwa” which was an attraction in several film festivals. He was also a memorable Manny Pacquiao in the boxer’s bio film.

“Yes, those years saw me evolve as a person and as an actor,” he pointed out. “Young and inexperienced, I was impulsive and with the usual rebel streak. Later I appreciate the value of hard work and being creative in whatever I do. I got more involved in projects and indeed, everything was a learning experience both inside and outside the movie set.”

He admits his teleserye years taught him a lot of things. “It’s pure soap all right and it’s drama woven out from real lives.’Drama na nga ang buhay natin nagiging ma-drama pa sa teleserye. But I tell you it is the most difficult job there is in showbiz. Soap operas demand a lot from you emotionally and psychologically. If you get a good rating, it is stretched from months to even years and that means taping almost every day. Acting-wise, there isn’t much freedom in teleserye as it is a producer’s medium. But you also enjoy the fact that the entire country is watching you every night and your character becomes familiar in all households from the slums to the exclusive subdivisions.”
His foray from mainstream to indie films had its rewarding moments.

Echo pointed out: “The mainstream films allow you to earn more and at the same time entertain. It is also true that in this medium, certain things are sacrificed to live up to box office expectations. But if you want to do movies out of pure passion, doing indie films is it. That is the reason I want to do one more indie project after my mainstream assignments.”

There was a time in those years that he had to withdraw from the showbiz circle to take stock of himself. “Everyone needs a breather from the fast pace of city life. Thus I heeded the call of the sea and went surfing with from La Union to Pagudpud in Ilocos Norte and Puraran Beach in Catanduanes. Surfing is my life outside of showbiz. It allows me quiet communion with nature while reflecting on my own life.”

He said the new Echo is now wiser and more focused: “I can now take difficult challenges with more calm. I always find time to reflect on new decisions and I make sure I cope very well with new frustrations and disappointments. Moreover, I find happiness in simple things and sharing it with your loved ones. I am more focused now whether heeding the call of showbiz or merely enjoying the sound of waves on top of my surfing board.”

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