Dingdong Dantes said he’s happy to be back to work via Kapuso network’s newest primetime soap, Pari Koy.
His last soap Ang Dalawang Mrs. Real drew to a close September of last year, giving him enough time to prepare for his much-celebrated wedding with Marian Rivera last December 30.
Even Marian is slated to start shooting this month for her new soap titled The Richman’s Daughter.
For his part, Dingdong couldn’t wait to start taping after months of being on vacation.
“Well, bilang siyempre trabaho talaga namin to represent shows of the network.
“Pero seasonal naman siya, e.
“Kasi nagkataon lang din na matagal yung pahinga namin from the preparation to the wedding until now.
“Medyo matagal-tagal din yun. So tamang timing lang na bumalik kami for this,” he began.
In Pari Koy, Dingdong portrays Jericho Evangelista, a dashing and talented young man who has the world at his feet.
But he opts to follow his calling to become a man of cloth and later becomes known as Fr. Kokoy, the well-loved parish priest of Barangay Pinagpala.
“He’s the unconventional priest, madaling lapitan, nakikihalubilo.
“Kung hindi siya nakasuot ng pampari, maiisip mo na he’s one of the people na nandun sa lugar nila.
“He does stuff na sinisiguro niyang nakikihalubilo siya sa parishioners,” said Dingdong, who was wearing a clerical collar to depict his role as Fr. Kokoy.
According to the show’s director Maryo Delos Reyes, Pari Koy aims to inspire people from all walks of life to cultivate peace and harmony especially amidst all the trials being encountered here in the country and in other parts of the world.
“I think we all need something like this to inspire us and to strengthen our faith not only in God but also in ourselves and fellowmen,” Direk Maryo stated in a separate interview.
As for the challenges that Dingdong will encounter in Pari Koy, the Kapuso actor said that it will definitely tackle current issues that Filipino viewers will be able to identify with.
Dingdong refused to give details but he admitted that the show will feature controversial themes including, quite possibly, same gender marriage.
“Sabihin na lang natin na hindi imposibleng magkaroon ng ganong klaseng twist.
“Pero hindi ko sinasabing gagawin ko ikakasal ko sila. Maaaring humantong sa gano’n.
“Dahil in our Roman Catholic religion it is not allowed.
“Pero gano’n katapang yung show to the extent of exploring yung mga gano’ng klaseng conflicts and twists.
“But of course what matters is yung resolution.
“We are presented with a situation, and [then you’ll find out] what [the characters will] do about it.”
Aside from social conflicts, Dingdong revealed that his character’s commitment to his vocation will be put to the test.
Will his character Fr. Kokoy get attracted to a woman?
Dingdong answered, “Puwede. Kumbaga aside from dealing with problems na walang kinalaman sa kanya, meron din siyang personal na problema.”
To further immerse himself to his role as a Catholic priest, Dingdong shared that he gets advice from his spiritual mentor and former high school principal Fr. Tito Caluag.
He added that the show’s consultants also include another priest, Fr. Erik Santos, who happens to be the spiritual mentor of ABS-CBN star Ai-Ai de las Alas.
“For this one in particular, si Fr. Tito Caluag ang isa sa mga inspirasyon ko dito.
"In fact, when I found out about it, siya yung isa sa mga unang in-inform ko at si Fr. Erik Santos ang isa sa mga aming consultants.
"Definitely, we make sure that everything we do we consult with our group of religious consultants,” said Dingdong.
Pari Koy’s cast members include Gabby Eigenmann, Sunshine Dizon, Jeric Gonzales, Ava Buenavista, David Remo, Jillian Ward, Hiro Peralta, Carlo Gonzales, JC Tiuseco, Rap Fernandez, Chanda Romero, Dexter Doria, Luz Valdez, and Japet Lazaro.