For Ian Veneracion, life indeed begins at 40.
At that age, he bagged the pivotal role of Eduardo Buenavista in the ABS-CBN remake of Pangako Sa ‘Yo (2015).
He was paired with Jodi Sta. Maria, who played Amor Powers in the series.
Avid followers of the series took notice and sooner than Ian could say what's next, he had regained his leading-man status.
He now plays the role of Anton Noble IV opposite Bea Alonzo in the Kapamilya primetime serye A Love To Last.
A perfect match even to his younger leading ladies, Ian nevertheless said his “crowd is mga titas and mommies.”
At his launch as the endorser of multivitamin brand Conzace yesterday, August 11, he related, “Katulad nung isang araw, may napakagandang bababe, lumapit sa ‘kin...
“Sabi niya, ‘Can I have a picture?’
“Sabi ko, ‘Of course.’
“Sabi niya, ‘Crush ka ng lola ko.’”
Ian paused, then continued, “So medyo masakit lang.
“I said, ‘Lola lang talaga?’
“‘Oo, pati mommy ko.’
Not that he's disappointed.
Considering he’s been in the business for more than three decades, he is a veritable veteran.
And having fans telling him he’s guwapo, for him, it's “nakaka-flatter.”
Don't get him wrong. He is not gloating. In fact, he couldn't quite grasp the idea that people find him handsome.
In fact, he shared, “Nung sinabi ng nanay ko na guwapo ako, hindi ako naniwala.
"That's probably because sa nilakihan ko, very normal. It wasn't like I was treated differently for my looks. Ganun siguro."
VAINGLORIOUS, NOT. Here's an amazing thing about Ian.
Not for all the glamor of his profession and the adulation of his fans can this 42-year-old actor be dragged to the gym.
"It’s so not me," he declared.
“I am so afraid to become vain. Ever since I was a kid, I’m afraid.
“For example, kaya ako never nagka-abs sa buong buhay ko, hindi ko ma-imagine yung sarili ko going to the gym.
“Hindi bagay sa ‘kin. Saka yung mga nakakakilala sa akin, alam nila yung ugali ko, hindi ako ganun.”
How does he stay fit?
Ian simply lives an active lifestyle, especially when he’s not busy taping for a project.
“I don’t go to the gym just to work out. Sometimes, I go to the gym for a specific [purpose].
"For example, basketball season, I’d do exercises for jumping…”
BUDGET-CONSCIOUS. Even his sport is dependent on his availability and budget.
He said, half-joking, “Sa sports ko, alam na ng mga kaibigan ko, pag nagyaya ako ng golf, alam nilang may pera ako.
“Pag tennis lang yung sport ko…medium lang [kita].
“Pag football or basketball, walang pera ito.”
But he knows he’s not getting any younger.
“Sa showbiz, napupuyat tayo, but healthy pa rin naman.
"Pero siyempre, mapapansin mo, mas napapansin kung bumibigat ka.
“Siyempre, aminado tayo na kailangan na rin ng supplements, gaya nito, may Vitamins A, C, E, and Zinc"
Given the nature of his job, doesn't he worry about his skin or hairline?
“Hindi ako yung conscious sa mga wrinkles, yung mga ganyan.
"If I do that, I won't be able to enjoy extreme sports with my kids, nasa araw ka, e.
"Masuwerte rin ako na malago ang buhok ko.
"But hindi ako yung hindi magpapaaraw dahil ayokong umitim.”
VALUE-ORIENTED. Despite fame and fortune his profession has brought him, Ian keeps himself grounded.
He said, “Hindi ako masyadong nakadepende sa bank account o sa dami ng tumitili.
"Parang temporary lang yun.
“I still live in the same house. I have the same wife. I drive the same car…so wala.
“Siguro the only difference is, a, dumami lang yung video greeting, yun lang.”
He forgot to add "lucrative income," but overall, he is grateful for his career's second wind.
"Akalain mo yun, naging leading man pa ako," Ian said, smiling.