David Lee McInnis of Descendants of the Sun fame was able to bond with two lucky Filipino celebrities when he visited the Philippines recently.
Popularly known as Captain Argus in Descendants of the Sun, David was spotted having dinner with sisters Gelli and Janice de Belen.
In her Instagram account, Janice posted their photo with a group of friends and wrote in her caption: "AN ENJOYABLE DINNER WITH NEW FRIENDS!!! IT WAS NICE MEETING YOU @davidleemcinnis !!!! COME BACK SOON"
Gelli also uploaded the same photo and provided the caption: "Lovely evening with new friends @adatewithdi , Sarah , Jay (oppaah) hehe and @davidleemcinnis . It was nice to meet you all, and of course @joannbanaga (not so new friend) hehe and Sis @super_janice Til next time. #Argus #descendantsofthesun”
PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) had the chance to interview David when he signed his contract with local talent management agency ALV Talent Circuit on July 28, 2017. His contract will last for one year, with an option to renew.
He says that if he wants to work here, he will need more time, "I need to do my research. I had dinner with Gelli and Janice de Belen.
"I want to watch more films, Philippine drama, and get the flow and feeling how it works and go from here."
He adds that he will start watching rom-com projects since Filipinos love it.
"Romantic comedies, I would love to do romantic comedy."
Partly in preparation of his projects in the Philippines--now that he has signed a management contract with ALV Talent Circuit--David watched the John Arcilla-starrer Heneral Luna.
"I will start there and figure it out."
He is happy to have touched base with Gelli and Janice over dinner organized by one of his Philippine managers, JoAnn Banaga.
He admitted, "I had so much fun laughing and talking, they are both so funny."
They swapped notes on working conditions between Korea and the Philippines.
"You have airconditioned tents here. We might have it worse than you all. We don't have those!"
The working hours are generally the same, he says, "It depends where in production you are. At the start, it's 11, 12, 14-hour days. Towards the end, when you are cramming, 24 hours then back again the same day."
If he could choose a Filipina actress to be his leading lady, who would he pick?
He did not give a name since he says, "I haven't done the research yet."
David was as a terrorist in the Korean hit, Descendants of the Sun but Arnold explains they don't want to typecast him in villain roles. He confesses, "I want to do a thriller."
He also needs to work on his Filipino language, "I need to get on that now, on Tagalog, I need to get on that so I need to buy a book."
He has picked up a few Filipino words in his first trip to the country. Over two days, he learned, "Mabuhay. Salamat, yeah I know this, Maraming salamat."
ON HIS CONTRACT. How did global actor David Lee suddenly come to sign a contract with a Filipino company?
"It started with a friend of mine who linked me with JoAnn, who introduced me to Arnold."
Arnold Vegafria started ALV Talent Circuit while JoAnn Banaga is a Pinoy film and television producer.
"It was all through friends' connections."
What made him interested to start exploring the Philippine market?
"It was all, it happened all of a sudden, I came here to visit and it happened by chance, as things are stirring fast."
Arnold explains that he wants to secure projects as soon as possible for David, "I want him to do a project, not only in the Philippines but also global."
David has done projects and films in the United States especially in Hawaii and Arnold promises, "We will just continue his journey."
The 6'2" actor also recently made a courtesy call to GMA-7’s management as a way of saying thank you to the network that aired a Tagalog-dubbed version of Descendants of the Sun recently.
His contract, while in the Philippines does not limit global exposure, as Arnold shares, "This is part of it, it is helping him in a global market."
David is managed as an exclusive talent with a management contract but non-exclusive when it comes to international projects. There is an option to renew clause.
According to Arnold, his ward has the heart of a Filipino since he grew up in Hawaii.
PROJECT WITH PACQUIAO? David Lee McInnis has recently worked on movies such as Who Killed Johnny, Seoul Searching, and Escape from Tibet. His TV work covers Descendants of the Sun, Gu Family Book, Iris II, and two episodes on Hawaii 5-0 in recent years.
He has just signed on to do a project in South Korea: an 8-part mini-series.
He points out, "It's new to Korea, showing stories about fake news, reporting, and stuff like that."
He also just finished working on Man to Man, a thriller-action-melodrama in South Korea.
David is currently working on a travel show, which airs September 2017. He traveled to Azerbaijan, Georgia, Macau, and Hong Kong for this show.
The German actor joins a talent roster which includes boxer-turned-politician Manny Pacquiao.
David admits, "That is, to be on the same company, same wavelength, whew, blown away, I am a huge fan of Manny Pacquiao."
Since he is now managed in the Philippines by the same company that manages Pacquiao, is there a possibility of working with the Pambansang Kamao on a project?
"I just crossed the border into the Philippines.
"I feel very blessed to have an opportunity to work with all of you.
"I just appreciate starting a working relationship with Arnold."
When asked if he is still with his Korean management, the actor says, "I am, I still am."
David says he feels about his move, "I am very fortunate to make the transition to another market.
"Just going to Korea was a big deal for me.
"Let's see what happens, coming here, if I can get in, and start a story here.
"I am super excited."
Right now, he has no preference for what he will work on.
"It is going to be project by project. I am willing to do anything."
(View: 20 things to know about Descendants of the Sun starring Song Joong Ki and Song Hye Kyo)