Nadine Lustre is hardly missing a beat, bagging endorsements left and right, launching and promoting an album, and working on a mini-series for ABS-CBN.
The 20-year-old actress shot to fame via the 2014 movie Diary ng Panget and her star hasn't stopped rising.
PEP.ph recently caught up with her during the October 17 celebrity gala premiere night of The Best of Me hosted by Viva International Pictures.
A self-confessed Nicholas Sparks fan, Nadine says the The Vow is her favorite among his many novels.
She says "it feels great" to be promoting her own album, "kasi super hands-on ako doon sa album, like they ask me kung anong klase ng songs gusto ko, kung anong genre, kung ano ba yung gusto kong marinig doon sa mga kanta, kung anong theme, kung anong feel ng kanta."
While she didn't write any of the songs on her self-titled EP album--they are all originals written by the likes of fellow Viva artists Thyro and Yumi--she points out: "sobrang hands-on ako, kahit nung ginagawa pa lang namin, sobrang excited na ako lumabas siya. Even the songs, I'm so excited to hear all of them."
Her solo EP also contains the track “Bahala Na,” her duet with onscreen partner James Reid.
NEW MOVIES FOR JADINE. Nadine and James, more popularly known as the JaDine love team, will be featured on the big screen once again.
They are slated to film Never Talk Back to a Gangster, which is the sequel to their previous movie Talk Back and You’re Dead.
The JaDine tandem will also be featured in an upcoming movie titled Para Sa Mga Hopeless Romantic that also stars Inigo Pascual and Julia Barretto.
Does Nadine feel overwhelmed with everything that is happening?
"It feels great pa rin, siyempre, I'm just really grateful na parang in such a short span of time, parang seven months, ang dami nang nangyari, two movies na, tapos ngayon may album ako.
"I feel so blessed lang talaga na sunod-sunod yung projects."
Nadine added: "It's really funny kasi two movies in a year, parang ginawa namin commercials yung movie kasi ang dami," referring to Diary ng Panget and Talk Back and You're Dead, both under Viva.
She is excited with what Never Talk Back to a Gangster holds for her and the characters we have come to know, love and hate over the past two movies.
She says that because she hasn't read the book yet, she can only infer based on reviews, "I guess dito kasi, mas involved na kasi this time si Red, e, si Joseph [Marco], mas malaki na yung role niya dito. Mas focused sa kanya yung story, I really don't know what to expect since hindi ko pa siya nababasa, pero most probably I'll stay the same as Sam lang."
TYPECAST IN ROM-COMS? How does she take the fact that it seems like she is being typecast into a certain mold of actress, of the romantic comedy variety?
Nadine doesn't mind, because to her, "well kasi tayong mga Filipino mahilig talaga tayo sa romantic na stories. Di ba, yung mga Precious [Hearts pocketbooks], before na puro love story, mahilig tayo sa ganoon talaga, mahilig tayo ma-in-love, yung kinikilig. I guess kasi ganoon lang talaga tayo."
But if she were given a chance to do something else, she shares that action is definitely something that interests her.
We ask her if she has a sport to complement that desire. She revealed: "boxing before but now since I'm busy I don't even have time to go to the gym anymore when I get time, talagang rest na lang."
She believes that Angelina Jolie's Salt is more of her peg for action movies, "yun ang dating, medyo dark na sobrang action talaga."
ON BEING COMPARED TO KATHRYN BERNARDO. We bring up the constant comparison Nadine Lustre and onscreen partner James Reid get to the power couple KathNiel, comprised of Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla.
Nadine laughs about it before casually answering, "I don't know, mayroon din naman talagang tao na magkatipo, wala naman problema, walang issue." She explains that she knows several people who look alike but aren't related at all.
While she has already attended events where both members of KathNiel have been present, Nadine has yet to personally meet Kathryn Bernardo.
Nadine says that when that time comes, "Magha-hi ako sa kanya definitely, kilala naman niya ako, kilala ko rin naman siya, pangit naman kung di ko papasinin, siyempre wala naman akong issue sa kanya."
Nadine added: "It's great na nako-compare kaming dalawa ni James sa kanila. We've been here seven months pa lang and yet sa big time na, it's really flattering."
ON WORKING WITH JAMES. What is the secret to their love team success?
Before Diary ng Panget, these two weren't singularly attracting hordes of screaming and adoring fans. What changed?
Nadine describes their time together, "we see each other most of the time, with the scheds and all, we're really close unlike before na may awkwardness pa.
"Yung relationship namin, yung friendship namin, it's going on a deeper level definitely."
But when pressed on what makes the two of them together click, so much so that even their taping days would go on trending in Twitter, Nadine shrugs and shares, "to be honest, I really don't know. Just being ourselves? I really don't know. Yung nga, that's what's funny nga na every time tinatanong nila kami, kung paano kami nagkaroon ng ganoon ka lakas na chemistry, di rin namin alam, we're just doing our job.
"Wala naman kaming ginagawang special or anything."
What does she appreciate most about the heartthrob known as James Reid?
"He's really... Well, quiet siya most of the time, especially pag hindi niya masyadong kilala yung tao. With me kasi, kaya nafi-feel ko na nagiging close kami kasi he tells me a lot of stories, nagkwekwentuhan lang kami, pag nagpapatawa siya sa akin, that's what I find special about him."
She relates something she found cute that James did for her,"special siya sa akin, while we were waiting for our scene [in ABS-CBN's mini-series My App Boyfie], habang nakastandby kami, nagpapatawa siya tapos I was holding this flower na may pot na may orchid, he's trying to bite," she trails off into small laughter.
She says that the James people see is quite different from the one she experiences, and with that she is happy knowing James is letting her be a part of his life.
In fact, she knows and admits that James is such a big factor in making her the star that she is now. "True din naman, yung breakout movie namin, DNP, siya kasama ko, e."
Could she consider James as something more in the future and does she see their love team growing stronger still?
"Sa love life di ko po alam, question mark 'yan pero dito definitely, I'm sure tatagal pa."
How would she describe their relationship? She smiles mysteriously, before answering: "partners in crime."
Has she thought of working with anyone else?
"Aside from James... siyempre James pa rin, I haven't thought of that yet."
She might consider a spin-off pairing of her and Joseph Marco because, "in a way mayroon na kaming na build up na chemistry, iba rin and siempre if you've watched the movie medyo nakakabigla yung secret ending, may nabuo na rin na chemistry so it's not hard for me."
Right now, though, Nadine will go with what her management trusts her with, "siguro kung decision ng management na i-pair ako sa iba, wala rin naman akong choice, magiging happy ako, kasi in a way, nag-gro-grow kami, together and separately siguro maganda na we know we can stand."
She does lament that with her schedule right now, there is no time for love. "Definitely wala.
"Wala, mahirap, walang time talaga, yun kasing showbiz, my career it requires so much time and effort wala ng time and effort na maibibigay para sa love life."
She is just being honest and forthcoming, "kung sobra wala ka ng time para sa sarili mo para makagpahinga, makapagrelax, mag lo-love life ka pa ba? Lalong mahihirapan."