At the press conference of Hello, Love, Goodbye, Alden Richards shared the first time he met director Cathy Garcia-Molina at the look test with Kathryn Bernardo for the movie. "Nakita ko si direk na parang may hinahanap. Parang naghahanap ng panga."
"So noong nag-ta-take na kami ng test shots, parang 'di na yata napigilan ni direk. Sabi niya, 'Alden, halika dito. Tingnan mo, ang taba mo.' Parang 'yon ang nag-drive talaga sa akin after the look test. May mga one month bago kami nag-Hong Kong. Sabi ko, 'Direk, 'pag nakita niyo ako ulit, hindi na ganyan itsura ko. Mas mataba na,'" he said, laughing.
"It was a conscious effort. My last project during that time was Victor Magtanggol and I had to gain some muscle pero ang na-gain ko ay taba yata."
The actor is grateful to have worked with the director. "I had many self-discoveries. Binago ni direk the way I see my work now. Hindi puwedeng half-baked ang commitment. Kailangan 'pag may ginagawa ka, ibuhos mo ang lahat."
In her 27 years in the industry, the director said, "I have worked with so many actors na mababait at magagaling. Alden is one of them." She remembered thinking, "Mataba lang pero mukhang marunong umarte 'tong batang to." She said at the press con, "Nagkamali ako. Hindi siya marunong—magaling siya. Napakabait na tao." Alden looked very touched by her words and gave her a big hug onstage.
"Coming from Direk Cathy, sobra akong na-move. Hindi ko akalain na ganoon ang magiging effect ko kay direk while doing this film. Siguro ganoon talaga. You just be yourself and let other people speak for you," he said in a report by ABS-CBN.
Alden posted a photo of their onstage hug. "This is probably one of my highlights as an actor. I am grateful for the opportunity to work with and learn from you, Direk. For your words of wisdom and encouragement, Direk Cathy, thank you."
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