Despite being successful in his career, Piolo Pascual still worries about his future and what would happen to his loved ones if—God forbid—something bad happens to him.
"We all need to be practical in our living, nothing is permanent. I'm well aware of the fact that success will not be here forever, and I made it to the peak of my career at this time, and I'm doing movies and shows...assignments, left and right. But I'm also aware that this is not here to stay for a long time. So, I make sure that I prepare for the future... Gosh, I'm sounding so dramatic!" joked the 33-year-old actor-singer-TV host after getting mushy in his speech at the Sun Life Financial Philippines press conference for the launching of his new TV commercial last July 10, Saturday, at the Sofitel Plaza Hotel in Manila.
Piolo continued, "Seriously, I've been working for more than 10 years already, and it was one of the first things that I worked on—to secure my future."
The Kapamilya actor, who has a new TV show premiering tonight on ABS-CBN, Noah, further lectured that one should be always work to be prepared for the future, "We don't want to wait until we're 60 and then realize about our safety. We can start now."
Piolo made this recommendation to guests and members of the media who attended the presscon, after listening to the speech and statistics presented by Gregory S. Martin, chief strategic marketing officer of the insurance company the actor is endorsing.
ADVOCACY FOR EDUCATION. Sun Life also has a special place in Piolo's heart because of the help it extended to the foundation Piolo and his family started about five years ago, the Hebreo 12:1 Foundation. Not too many people know about this advocacy of Piolo, so, PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) asked him about it.
"It's something na, you don't wanna flaunt. But if there are people who wanna know about it, of course, I'm so much willing to share about it. It's a foundation that I put up with my family, and some of my earnings go there. I mean, you know, you wanna be able to pay it forward, so that's why we put it up. And I'm an advocate of education. I wanna be able to help in my own little way, on how we can empower kids, how we can inspire them and how we can help them to graduate, to have education. So, with this foundation, we were able to do that and with the help of Sun Life.
"Incidentally, since they partnered with me, because of the shares that I got from them, because of the proceeds of the calendar that we sold from last year, it's definitely gonna send a lot of kids to school, not just for a year but for so many years.
"We have graduates already sa iba't ibang levels. From grade school to high school. Well, I started in my high school [Saint Francis School in Sta. Ana, Manila]. Siyempre dun ako nanggaling, so naka-two batches na kami ng mga honor students. Of course, you have an average you have to reach for a scholarship, and last March, nung graduation, nagbigay ako ng speech. We also have college scholars, but we wanna start them young. Siyempre dun muna sa grassroots, from there, dire-diretso na through college."
Here is the rest of PEP's exclusive interview with Piolo:
Aside from Hebreo, what are your other advocacies?
"I'm a supporter of 'Kapit-Bisig Para sa Ilog-Pasig' of Ms. Gina Lopez. Like the Pasig River run, I always join. If there's anything she needs help with, I'm there to support her."
A while ago, you mentioned something about a calendar. Is this the calendar that features your work as a photographer, the one Mr. Martin was talking about?
"Yeah, ha-ha-ha! Ito kasing Sun Life, e. Joke!"
So, you're into photography, another thing not a lot of people know about you. Tell us more.
"Well, ever since I was a kid, I've always been fascinated about landscapes, and I've been taking photos. Kulang ako sa human interest, actually. I'm more into landscapes, I'm more into stills and structures.
"And just recently, I don't know why, bakit ba?
Piolo turned to Don Aaron B. Peji of Creative and Digital Marketing, who put up the Sun Life presscon. Don told him they found out about Piolo's Hebreo foundation and they came up with the idea of selling calendars featuring Piolo's shots to help Hebreo.
So, it turns out Sun Life was kinda instrumental in your venturing into professional photography.
"Yeah. Well, actually, everyone's into it nowadays, as long as you have a camera, but, yeah. They were the ones who helped me realize this.
"And then, after that, Ayala [Corporation] tapped me, commissioned me to do work for them, for the ongoing exhibit they have. They asked me to photograph local arts. That's a commissioned work for me. So, I was really surprised. It's something na naman na hindi ko naman ididire-diretso. It's just something na like a hobby. I'm just really happy and I'm privileged to be given a chance to do something else, other than act."
Do you have a dream subject or someone you want to photograph?
"For me, I just love taking pictures of sunsets...all around the world... All around the world?! Ha-ha-ha!"
OF COURSE, A KC QUESTION. A Piolo interview will not end without asking him about rumored girlfriend KC Concepcion. Although Piolo has already told many times in many interviews that he and KC are "just friends," PEP asked for his comment on the recent situation KC had with some members of the press.
In the past, you had your share of vicious attacks from some members of the press, and recently, KC was in the same situation, did she talk to you about this?
"Oo...siya naman. Well, she asked me about it. She asked me how to deal with it. Sabi ko sa kanya, you only naman give what you wanna get. I mean, you know, it's not your responsibility to answer everything or to give everything that you wanna give. I mean they only take from you what you give them. So I guess it's also a learning experience. There's no magic there, there's no solution to how you deal with people. It's just really a matter of grace, and patience and lot of wisdom.
"So, I guess, with her, natututo naman siya in her own way. It's something na hindi mo puwedeng i-impart. It's something na you have to learn yourself. You just have to really deal with it, because you're a part of the business, you're public property and whatever you say matters to people.
"So, I guess, it's important that you have a discerning heart and a very patient spirit. Otherwise, you'll be affected and talagang mahirap. So with her, I think, not naman sa akin lang. I mean, she learns from her mom a lot. So, I guess compared dun sa history ng mom niya, I think she gets a lot of wisdom from her mom."