Leah Salterio

What Noel desires before retiring

April 13, 2024 Leah C. Salterio 177 views

NovaVETERAN actor Noel Trinidad does not deny he still misses acting, now that offers come few and far between.

“Nasa dugo ‘yan,” said the octogenarian actor who was last seen in the well-received and critically acclaimed Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) entry, director Nuel Naval’s Family Matters (2022).

“But at the same time, I try to do a film that I will be happy doing. I don’t want to do it for the sake of doing only one film. It’s got to be a role that I like. No pressure.

“What I’m hoping is that I will get a bandido role. Contravida. A character that people naturally hate. I’ve done goody-goody roles in the past, but I haven’t done something that people hate. Kinaiinisan ng tao. An old man na killer or child molester.”

Noel doesn’t have any particular peg or character in mind, but he will be happy to just essay a contravida role before he retires.

“I’ve done lovable roles, but I haven’t done anything na kaka-inisan ako. Lumalabas pa lang, kinasusuklaman na. I wish somebody will offer me a role like that.

Either on TV or the big screen, Noel believes he can still essay that kind of role. “I don’t know if the public can see me as a bandido,” the veteran actor said. “It will be a challenge for me. I haven’t done something like that. Para maiba naman.”

Noel will be part of the light drama film, Senior Moments, where he completes a triumvirate with Nova Villa and Tessie Tomas. At the helm is Neil “Buboy’ Tan under A&S Films.

Noel unabashedly admitted he has many senior moments to date. “Even at home, when I go to another room, I will ask myself when I get there, ‘Ano nga ba ang gagawin ko dito?’

“I think I have accepted the fact that I’m old and I will often have those senior moments.”

Noel’s last teleserye was the daily morning rating topgrosser, Be Careful With My Heart, with Jodi Sta. Maria and Richard Yap, shown a decade ago.

“I think I can do another teleserye, I don’t mind, but it has to be a very interesting role,” Noel admitted. “Because otherwise, parang I have done it already.

“At my age, very few na ang offers. Madalang na. I still want to work, but I have to be offered the role. I hope I can still do something different. Let’s see. Gusto ko talagang to play a bandido.”

Noel mentions the veteran actors he admires to this day. “There’s Joonee Gamboa, Jaime Fabregas, Tessie Tomas and Mitch Valdes,” Noel said. “Parang nauubos na ang generation namin. Ilan na lang ang ‘living treasures’ sa Philippine cinema.”

He remembers his erstwhile partner, Subas Herrero, from the time of the Champoy days in the 80s. “Si Subas para kong kapatid talaga,” Noel admitted.

“I visited him in the old folks home in the US when he got sick. He was already in a wheelchair. That was just before he passed away (in 2013).”

Noel recalled he also missed acting onstage, where he started his acting career. “I cannot even remember when was the last theater play that I did,” he said.

“But memorizing scripts is still not a problem to me. Kaya pa. But remembering things, marami na akong hindi natatandaan.”

Noel started on radio when he was only nine years old. “Kasama ko noon si Togo and Pugo,” he shared. “I was the only child actor there. Meron kaming microphone, may script at may live audience.

“Binabasa naman ang script in front of an audience. Before that, (director) Bert Avellana got me for a role for an American film. I was with Rosa Aguirre.”

Although Noel is no longer active on the big screen, he remains on his toes even when he’s at home.

“Every day, I walk for 30 minutes around our village every morning,” Noel said. “That keeps me active physically. At my age, I’m turning 83 this August, that keeps me still active.”