Fifteen-year-old Therese “Teri” Malvar’s star is quickly on the rise and not just here in the Philippines.
After gaining attention from American movie critics at the New York Asian Film Festival where she fittingly received the Screen International Rising Star Asia award, she also impressed cinephiles in Russia who favored her for the Silver St. George Best Actress award at the 38th Moscow International Film Festival. Both international recognitions were given to Malvar for her performance in Ralston Jover’s drama Hamog.
Hamog is a story about delinquents who commit crime in order to survive everyday life. Malvar plays the role “Jinky,” a street kid who is strong, confident and cunning. Her portrayal best highlight the heartbreaking reality of impoverished children who roam the streets to support themselves and often their families.
Truly in touch with her role, the GMA Network artist related in an interview, “[I learned] na hindi po sila [street children]biktima. Kasi lagi po pag street children kawawa, umiiyak lagi pero in real life, nung nag-immersion kami sobrang tapang po nila. Parang hindi nila iniisip na ganoon sila ‘kababa’ in society–very confident sila.”
Further showing that she is a thinking actor, Malvar added, “Feeling ko hindi sila biktima, nakulangan lang sila and they just need help. Sa media kasi yung masasamang issues yung pinapakita nila eh, kunwari nagnanakaw sila and everything. Eh yun po yung kailangan nilang gawin kasi wala naman po silang pagkain at gamit. Matapang sila.”
As she looks forward to exploring the depth of her acting abilities, Malvar is taking time from the whirl of excitement she just experienced in the international scene to acknowledge the individuals behind her success.
“I accepted these awards with the honor and pride of being a Filipino. The opportunities being given to me paved the way for this recognition and I’m really thankful. Maraming salamat po sa pagkakataon at lalo na po sa mga walang sawang sumusuporta,” she expressed.
According to Malvar, after she receives the last round of congratulations for her wins in New York and Moscow, she wants to go on with career as she had always done so in the past.
“I don’t want to think about them too much kasi baka po isipin ng ibang tao malaki ulo, ma-pride ako. Pero thankful po ako and blessed kasi wow! Nagka-best actress award ako from my first indie film. So happy po ako kasi reward po iyon not only for me but sa buong production kasi sila po nag guide sa akin,” she explained.
Although Malvar’s schedule has become more hectic with new projects both for film and TV, she still makes every effort to continue high school at a private school in Pasay City. Even there, she is hailed by her teachers for balancing her studies and her showbiz career.
“Nagugulat po yung teacher ko kasi bumabawi po ako sa periodical, sa prelims. kasi ako po yung either first, second or third sa highest. pero may kulang pa rin po sa gradesko so I try to catch up po talaga,” the teener excitedly shared.
Besides Hamog, she showed remarkable talent in such critically acclaimed films such as Child Haus, Sakaling Hindi Makarating, and Ang Huling Cha-Cha ni Anita, where she won Best Actress in the 2013 CineFilipino Film Festival.
Malvar is hoping to stay as a Kapuso artist since her contract with GMA is set to expire in August.
“Kung ako po masusunod I really would want to [stay with GMA]. I’m happy with them so, hopefully. Gusto ko po sana gumawa ng mainstream movie or TV show,” she said.