ABS-CBN actress Yen Santos finally revealed the real reason why she did not push through with her project with Gerald Anderson and Jake Cuenca.
Yen was supposed to star in the triathlete-themed teleserye titled Because You Loved Me.
However, Because You Loved Me was shelved, and ABS-CBN management came up with the idea of reuniting Gerald with former love team partner and ex-girlfriend Kim Chiu.
This paved the way for the creation of the Kimerald daytime series Ikaw Lang Ang Iibigin.
In an exclusive interview with PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal), during the media announcement of her upcoming show Love Will Lead You Back, Yen admitted that she backed out of Because You Loved Me.
She explained, "Ano kasi siya, parang, di ba, umpisa pa lang, yung character ko, champion siya sa girls ng triathlon.
"So, siyempre, parang kung gano’n yung character, kailangan mo talaga ng matinding training.
"Kasi ako, sa totoong buhay, hindi naman ako athletic. Wala akong sports kumbaga, di ba?"
To prepare for her supposed role as a triathlete, Yen had to learn how to bike, run, and swim in the ocean.
Though she is really afraid of swimming, the 25-year-old actress still underwent rigorous training for the project.
She recalled, "I tried. Nagtraining ako kasi siyempre ang ganda noong project.
"But still, siguro talaga, may mga bagay na kailangan ng swimming. Sa bike, run, wala talaga magiging problem kasi kaya ko yun, e.
"Kaso kasi, tubig ang number one na takot ako. Wala akong alam, na parang ako, natakot ako talaga.
"Ayoko naman na maging cause…nag-open up ako [sa management], ayoko maging cause of delay pag nag-taping na, di ba, ako yung hihintayin.
"Ayon, siguro meeting-meeting, hanggang nagdecide na rin sila."
NO REGRETS. In April 2016, ABS-CBN announced that Yen was chosen as the leading lady of Gerald and Jake in Because You Loved Me, which depicts the world of triathletes.
Yen and Gerald then started taping their scenes in Bulalacao, Mindoro.
However, in September 2016, reports appeared saying Kim had replaced Yen in the series, which had now become a Kimerald reunion teleserye.
No reason was given about why Yen was replaced, although there were rumors saying that Yen had qualms about doing diving scenes.
In October 2016, ABS-CBN drama unit Dreamscape Entertainment announced that Kim and Gerald will do the triathlete-themed series Ikaw Lang Ang Iibigin, with Jake retained as part of the cast.
The media announcement also said Because You Loved Me had been shelved.
Fast forward to today, Yen is proud to say that she does not have any regrets about leaving the project.
She pointed out, "Wala! Wala, wala na akong gano’n, kasi siyempre, ayoko namang ipilit din, di ba? Baka hindi nga talaga para sa akin.
"May mga pumalit naman, may mga dumating na bago [na projects]."
After the announcement of the Kimerald series, Yen became part of the cast of the now defunct teleserye Magpahanggang Wakas, which starred Jericho Rosales and Arci Muñoz.
Currently, Yen appears in the early prime-time series Wildflower.
GOING SEXY. Yen will play a major character in the upcoming Kapamilya teleserye Love Will Lead You Back, a drama series that tells the relationship between two married couples.
Yen is cast as Sam Milby's rich wife, who will also become involved with another couple, to be portrayed by Jericho Rosales and Yam Concepcion.
Talking about the project, the Kapamilya actress gushed, "Ay, super excited ako!
"Pero, siyempre, alam mo yun, yung excited ka pero may kasama talagang... Well, di naman mawawala yung pressure, kasi lagi naman nandiyan yan, kumbaga, kabuntot natin 'yan, e."
Although Yen has already played a married woman in the defunct fantasy afternoon series All Of Me, she said this is the first time that her character will tackle real marital and relationship problems.
She continued, "Kasi nga yung character, ito talaga yung first time na ganito ka-mature, kasi married.
"This time, kailangan makita ka, iba, kasi mature, e. Talagang married. Paano ba mag-act ng ganoon, ta’s ang daming struggles, ang daming problema. Sobrang nakaka-excite kasi ang layo din sa mismong ako."
Speaking of doing mature scenes, Jericho revealed during the presscon that Yen will first appear in Love Will Lead You Back in a scene showing her soaking in a bath tub and scrubbing her body.
According to the Kapamilya actress, she has no qualms about showing skin on television.
She said with a smile, "Wala na! Ilang beses naman, at saka twenty-five naman na ako, magkekyeme pa ba ako na anes!
"Nago-grow naman kasi, so part yun ng trabaho mo as an actress, e.
"Pag malayo talaga yung character sa sarili mong ikaw, yun yung masarap gawin kasi aaralin mo siya."