Last year, there were speculations that Alden Richards would star opposite Jennylyn Mercado in the local adaptation of My Love from the Star, the romantic Korean drama that took Asian TV by storm in 2014. Other names surfaced including Ken Chan, Richard Juan, Lharby Policarpio, and Jake Ejercito as among those that auditioned and were considered for the role originally played by Korean superstar Kim Soo Hyun.
All the speculations were crushed though when in December the network introduced Gil Cuerva as Mercado’s leading man. The announcement got everybody asking who this newbie was. Many even questioned Cuerva’s ability to give justice to the character the Filipino audience loved.
Fast forward to the series’ pilot telecast, Cuerva felt overwhelmed when viewers warmly welcomed the show including his performance as the leading man.
“I’m not used to this kind of support I’m getting from fans. I’m overwhelmed by the response from the people who watch the series and the number fans is growing each day,” said Cuerva in a recent interview with the entertainment press.
Supporters were also particular on the episode where Cuerva appeared on the screen taking a shower half-naked. The scene is part of the episode, uploaded by GMA Network YouTube channel, which has now been viewed more than a million times on the popular video sharing site.
This puts the 21-year-old model-turned-actor the envy of some men and the newest fantasy of the female and gay fans of the show.
“I appreciate it, I guess, in a way. It just means that they like me. I am thankfully that they find me attractive, sexy or whatever,” he said.
Although he’s used to showing some skin being a model, Cuerva is still adjusting to being one of those objectified male TV stars. The actor understands that his leading-man career is partially dependent on his physique, but hopes that one day people would also notice his acting ability.
“In the future, I hope ma-notice nila na maganda rin yung acting [ko], which right now I’m trying to get better,” he beamed.
Cuerva admitted that he was very nervous in his first acting stint and it was pure determination that gave him the guts to audition for the coveted role. He also shared that he was surprised upon hearing the news of his casting since he didn’t expect to get it. He then started watching the entire series (the original version) and underwent a series of acting workshops facilitated by Joyce Bernal, who is directing the local adaptation of the hit Korean drama.
“Right now, I’m still getting familiar with the whole experience. I’m trying to embrace everything including the pressure that comes with it. I promise to always put my best foot forward,” the towering Cuerva ended.