ARIELLA Arida represented our country in the 2013 Miss Universe and was 3rd runner up. She then tried acting and did supporting roles like in the movis “Ganda Rapido” and “Coming Home”. She now gets to play a lead role in Viva’s sex comedy, “Sarap Mong Patayin”, where she shares topbilling with hunk Kit Thompson and comedian Lassy Marquez. What’s her role in the 11th movie directed by the very prolific Darryl Yap?
“I play Krista,” she says. “The movie is about catfishing sa social media where someone pretends to be another person para makaakit ng ibang tao. It’s very relevant now kasi marami talagang nagpapanggap. Hindi ko alam, si Lassy Marquez, ginamit pala ang litrato ko para mahulog ang loob sa kanya ni Kit Thompson.”
She has a kissing scene with gay comedian Lassy in the movie. Didn’t she feel reluctant to do it?
“Hindi naman. Direk Darryl even said, kapag nahalikan ka ni Lassy, hindi ka na tatablan ng covid virus. Pero siya pa nga ‘yung parang nagdalawang-isip kung hahalikan niya ako. What I did is I always look at him while we’re on the set para mag-sink in sa’king mabuti na makakahalikan ko siya. Sabi ko, alang-alang sa sining,sige, gagawin ko.”
So how is the kiss? “Pinakamalansa sa lahat ng malansang isda,” she says.
Lassy butts in and jokes: “Hindi ako nag-toothbrush bago kami naghalikan.”
Ariella retorts laughing: “Okay lang dahil nahalikan mo naman ‘yung sipon ko. ‘Yun ang ganti ko sa kanya.”
She says the truth is she had fun doing the movie. “After the kissing scene, nagtatawanan na lang kami. First time ko makatrabaho lahat ng kasama ko rito and lahat sila, magaan kaeksena kaya naging madali ang lahat for me kahit mabibigat yung mga eksenang ipinagagawa sa amin.”
She says the character of Krista is very different from her in real life. “Pinag-isipin ko muna kung tatanggapin ko ang movie kasi kakaiba ang concept niya and Direk Darryl says he wants viewers to see it na parang on drugs sila. This is actually my first lead role kasi puro support lang ako before, even sa teleserye. But naisip ko, I will just be playing a character. It’s not really si Ariella naman, so dun ako nag-focus, sa role ko bilang Krista. At kapag ganun ang mindset ko, nawawala yung reservations ko. Nakatulong nang malaki ang co-stars ko at si Direk Darryl para maitawid ko ang role ko and I’m proud na nagawa ko ito dahil hindi ko ine-expect na mabibigyan ako ng ganitong role.”
She says Lassy helped her even in her other scenes. “Yes, nakatulong na si Lassy ang hahalikan ko para sa motivation ko maging sa scenes na kailangang maiyak ako. Hahaha! Ang totoo, we’re so comfortable with each other which is good kasi ‘Sarap Mong Patayin’ is not the regular movie na maraming linyahan at sagutan. Ang script namin, 14 pages lang. Kakaiba ang atake ni direk. May takot ako nung una, may reservations, pero nang in-explain na ni direk kung paano niya gagawin, nakatulong for me to do everything without any hesitation. My role is very physically challenging. May scene na itinali pa ako and tinorture, so afterwards, may mga pasa ko. But I can say na masaya ako sa kabuuan ng ginawa namin.”
Another beauty queen is now very busy with Viva, Kylie Versoza. They’re now being pitted with each other as the Bagong Pantasya ng Vivamax. How does she feel about it?
“Wala namang problema sa competition with Kylie as long as it’s a healthy competition and it would help us both to be better in our craft.
But I pray that someday I’d be given the chance to do action roles, parang ‘Lara Craft, Tomb Raider’, and I also want to try bad ass roles.”
Direk Darryl has nothing but good words for her. “She’s a very intelligent beauty queen. Matalino siya talaga and can really act. She has very expressive eyes at wala siyang ka-ere-ere.”
If “Sarap Mong Patayin” has a valid message, what would it be? “I think it’s mag-ingat sa social media kasi, akala mo mabait yung taong ka-chat mo pero hindi pala. Catfishing is panloloko ng tao. It’s very rampant now sa social media. Magulo na nga ang mundo, mas pinapagulo pa nila. You should just be true to yourself at hindi yung nagpapanggap ka. With this movie, maisip sana nila na let’s just all be real and responsible.”
Beauty pageants today are “urong-sulong” with their finals night. What can she tell the candidates now? “Naawa nga ako sa girls who are joining the pageants kasi ilang beses ng na-postpone because of the pandemic. All I can say is don’t despair, ituloy lang nila nilang laban.
Don’t give up at tuloy lang pati motivation nila, ang training nila, God willing, matutuloy rin yan.”