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Don’t lose yourself: Donny Pangilinan gets ‘simple request’ from mom Maricel

MANILA, Philippines, January 23 ------ Whenever Donny Pangilinan is at home, he’s not treated like a celebrity. He’s expected to do regular household chores — wash dishes, take care of siblings, walk the dog. And like any child, he gets constant reminders from his parents, despite achieving star status in the industry. 


When The STAR asked what is his mom’s advice for him nowadays, Donny shared it’s the basic, practical things: “Matulog,” “Mag-save ng pera,” “Take your vitamins” and “Kumain na.” But the big one? “Don’t lose yourself.” “Simple lang ang hiling ko sa kanya. Don’t lose yourself,” Maricel told this paper. “And magaling si Donny dyan kasi meron siyang goal na ‘pag nasa bahay, si Donny lang sya. “Hindi kami pwedeng humingi ng video greets. Hindi kami pwede humingi ng pa-picture. “So kailangan ganito gagawin namin, ‘Donny, hugasan mo na yung mga plato. Inalagaan mo na ba yung kapatid mo? Nilabas mo na ba yung aso kasi isang regular member ka lang ng pamilya na ito so ganyan talaga tayo dito,’” Maricel further shared. “Kaya hindi na ako umuuwi,” Donny jokingly reacted to his mom. “Walang pamilyang perpekto. Ang dami din naming pagkakamali, ang dami naming shortcomings, but I think at the end of the day, we choose each other,” the actor further said about staying close to his family. The STAR got to see how close the mother and son are, as well as how they banter, during the interview for their first film together, GG (Good Game), a youth-oriented drama that dives into eSports and family dynamics. “I can’t believe that I’m working with my mom in a film, you know. We just finished a photo shoot right now and parang first time namin mag-photoshoot ng (just the two of us),” the actor said. Other family members are likewise involved in GG like Donny’s sister, Hannah, who is creative producer and father Anthony Pangilinan, who produced the film under his company, MediaWorks, along with MQuest Ventures, same group that co-financed Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) 2023 entries GomBurza and Penduko. Donny was particularly drawn to how GG was written because it was different from real life. 


In the film, he plays the competitive gamer Seth who is not close to his mom, unlike their close-knit reality. “I think also the way the script was written, eSports wasn’t just the focus. Of course, it has eSports gaming and whatnot, but the family aspect is very deep also. Dito kasi hindi kami close and very different in real life,” he said. “So, I think even just that, knowing that we’re gonna portray people who are super different from how we actually are, plus it’s a mother and son (story), I think that really intrigued us and that’s where the conversation (to do this film) started.” According to Donny, there are several lessons to learn from GG, from how eSports is a serious business, to the growing gap between parents and kids due to technology, to how finding a middle ground is crucial for families to navigate life together. “First of all, hindi biro yung eSports industry, Hindi sila dapat parang ibalewala. I have such great respect for eSports players, yung pro players, yung mga pinagdadaanan nila, you could really make a solid career out of it. And you can go internationally, you can compete and represent your country as it’s a real sport,” he said of the various messages that the film carries. “Another one is the gap between parents and kids. Of course, with all the technology now, minsan mas lumalaki yan, ‘pag hindi sila aware, hindi nila alam kung ano yung pinagdadaanan ng anak. Pero hindi rin alam ng anak ang pinagdaraanan ng magulang. 




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