The pressure is on for KathNiel to lead ‘La Luna Sangre’

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Daniel Padilla and Kathryn Bernardo

New series is third installment in fantasy franchise ‘Lobo’ and ‘Imortal’

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The much-awaited teleserye “La Luna Sangre” is inching its way toward a primetime premiere on June 19. Headed by top love team Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla—popularly known as KathNiel—the show is the third installment in the fantasy franchise of “Lobo” (2008) and “Imortal” (2010).

Besides the return of KathNiel to the small screen after their last series “Pangako Sa’ Yo” in 2015, and their string of box-office movies in “Crazy Beautiful You” (2015), “Barcelona: A Love Untold” (2016) and “Can’t Help Falling in Love” (2017), fans are eagerly anticipating the special participation of big named stars Angel Locsin and John Lloyd Cruz who will reprise their well-loved Imortal characters Lia and Mateo.

With Locsin, Cruz as well as Piolo Pascual [in Lobo]credited in raising the bar in the action-fantaserye genre on local television, Bernardo and Padilla admitted they are nervous to follow in the trio’s success.

“We are definitely feeling the pressure,” Bernardo acknowledged at the series’ press launch on Tuesday. “We’re kind of nervous because this is new to us and we’re still adjusting. We’ve waited for this as much as our fans since it should have started after ‘Got to Believe’ [their series in 2014], but we feel it’s better we’re doing it today because we’ve become more mature as actors.”

“Yes, the pressure is there because like Kathryn said, so many people are waiting for this to show,” Padilla agreed. “We will give it our 100 percent and in saying that I am also thankful and honored to be able to continue to the franchise. I am also very excited to show a different flavor to our fans.”

Locsin, who was also present at the news conference, helped calm the nerves of the pair of young actors when she declared that La Luna Sangre will be better that both ratings winners Lobo and Imortal.

“I feel happy to see that people appreciate the hard work we’ve done in the past shows. We’re all very happy—with Piolo in Lobo and John Lloyd in Imortal. And now, two of the biggest stars in the country from this generation will portray new roles in the series so I am both honored and thankful because in a way, this third instalment feels like a tribute for all of us,” Locsin explained.

Angel Locsin and Richard Gutierrez reunites in the series after a decade

She added, “So when they asked me if it’s OK to appear in La Luna Snagre, I said yes without any hesitation. I will help however I can because I really love the project.

For Locsin, the network could not have given the lead roles to a better pair of actors. “We are happy to turn over the franchise to Kathryn and Daniel and I know they will surpass what we did before.”

Based on KathNiel’s filmography, La Luna Sangre will be the love team’s first action project, which is why they have both committed to rigorous training to deliver convincing fight scenes.

“When they first told us about this project, I was so overwhelmed because I’d been longing to do action. I can say we really prepared for this knowing it will not only test our acting skills but challenge us physically too. We trained in Pekiti martial arts as well as Wushu, and I ended up bruised in both,” Bernardo chuckled.

Team Angel-Richard
Meanwhile, newly minted ABS-CBN talent Richard Gutierrez will also make his Kapamilya debut via La Luna Sangre as The Manila Times earlier reported. He plays the role of Sandrino, the king of vampires, who will stand in the way of Malia (Bernardo) and Tristan (Padilla).

A truly exciting time for the actor to resume his career in a new environment, he is also happy to be reunited with Locsin with whom he had a successful love team for both TV and the movies when they were both young actors in GMA Network.

“I am very excited to work with Richard again after 10 years,” Locsin exclaimed. “ I knew him from the very start of my acting career—I’m familiar with his nuances and I’ve almost memorized them already. But I’m eager to see how he has grown as an actor now as I’m sure he is with me. What’s nice is that when we started taping, it was as if 10 years hadn’t passed us. I believe our chemistry is still there.”

Gutierrez on the other hand shared how Locsin was very happy for him when she found out he was making the cross over to ABS-CBN. She gave him a big welcome and they are both looking forward to working on La Luna Sangre as well as a movie for Star Cinema.

“Ang sarap ng feeling na makakatrabaho ko ulit si Angel kasi sabay kami nag-start. It’s good to see familiar faces and work with them Angel’s been a vital person in my career, and I feel blessed to be able to do a reunion project with her,” Gutierrez said.

The prophecy
La Luna Sangre’s story revolves around a prophecy of the same name, which portends that “the child of the most powerful vampire and the chosen wolf will end the evilness of the vampire imprinted with the cursed ink,” according to the production notes.

Already living their simple lives as mortals, Mateo (Cruz)—who was once a powerful vampire—and Lia (Locsin)—a werewolf—are unaware that the said prophecy will haunt them. When Sandrino suddenly comes to kill them and their daughter Malia (Bernardo), who is believed to be the chosen one, Mateo and Lia do everything they can to protect her even if they have already lost their powers. But in the end, evil prevails and Malia is left an orphan under the care of other vampires and werewolves.

Out of shame, Malia chooses to leave her responsibility and bravely faces the world of mortals. There, she meets Tristan (Padilla), a young man hunting the vampire who killed his father, whom she falls in love with.

With an exciting story on offer to viewers, box-office Director Cathy Garcia-Molina promised this third instalment will be “so much better” than its predecessors especially when it comes to the quality of effects.

“Of course, the graphics will be more advanced than the first two. This is the weakness of the movie industry in the Philippines—we cannot compare the quality of our shows or action films with those of Hollywood because of the computer graphics. They can do it because they have money, while we have limited budget for the same expectations. But we will try our best to make the quality better for the viewers to enjoy,” she related.

Also part of La Luna Sangre’s cast are Ina Raymundo, Randy Santiago, Gelli De Belen, Joross Gamboa, Toni Labrusca, Isabelle Daza, Danita Paner, Romnick Sarmenta and Victor Neri, among others.

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