EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH ANDREA TORRES & MIKAEL DAEZ
THEMAN: Can you introduce yourself?
Andrea: I’m Andrea Torres. I am from the Philippines. I was part of “It Might Be You”; it’s still showing on TV. I think they’re going to show other show “With a Smile” on CTN.
Mikael: Hi, I am Mikael. I’m also from the Philippines. I’ve done many movies with Andrea. We’ve done “It Might Be You” and another one which is “Blood in Dispute” here in Cambodia with fellow Cambodian actors. This is my third times here in Cambodia. I absolutely love here—the food is great, the people are great, the sun is extremely hot (laugh). But it’s fine! I mean this is an annual thing for me. Every year, since three years ago, I’ve been here in Cambodia. So in a way, it’s like a tradition for me. I really enjoy and I look forward to my stay here, and I’m glad that every time I go, there’s always something new.
THEMAN: How did you start up your acting career in the Philippines?
Andrea: I started to do modeling first, so I did several commercials, print ads, I model for magazines; and that’s where I was discovered by GMA, my network in the Philippines.
Mikael: Same! I was a model too (laugh). I started out as a model after I graduated from a college; and after that I signed up with GMA Network. It was pretty much straightforward. I was offered a chance to try to act, and I did it, and I enjoy it now, and I’m here in Cambodia.
THEMAN: What is your first impression on Cambodia?
Andrea: It’s my second time here. I like it here because it’s like the Philippines. There are so many things that are similar to what we have at home, and the people are very friendly. I can’t stop taking my phone out of my bag because I just want to take pictures of the whole place.
I like the look of Cambodia. I like how it’s very warm every time I come here. So, I didn’t have a hard time staying here, especially now I’m going to stay here longer—we’re here for 10 days, so I didn’t have a hard time. It feels like home.
Mikael: Like I said, I’ve been here three times. I like it because people are very hospitable; they’re very similar to the Philippines. They like serve me a lot of food. They like to say “hello”. They may not able to speak English as much as Filipinos, but they’re very friendly, and that’s always been a plus. And like I said, it’s very hot here but it’s also very hot in the Philippines. But I like how Andrea said that she liked the look of Cambodia; it’s very different and you can really see the culture and I appreciate that because I like travelling, I like to see other culture. Cambodian are seemed to be very proud of theirs.
THEMAN: Would you mind describing your roles in Blood in Dispute?
Andrea: I played as Angela, and I’m a girlfriend of Marco (Mikael). So, I’m not really happy with my job. The interesting part of my day depends on Marco’s story about his Muai Thai (Bokator). So, he goes to Cambodia, and I follow him because I love him so much (Laugh). But besides being together in Cambodia, it’s also an opportunity for Angela to find herself.
Mikael: My role is Marco. In Blood in Dispute, Marco is a Muai Thai champion in the Philippines. But his dad is full Cambodian, so it makes Marco half-Cambodian, half Filipino. And when a tragedy happens to Marco’s life, he decides he wants to go to Cambodia, and tries out his martial arts there—which is Bokator. So, he trains in Cambodia, and that’s how his story starts. THEMAN: What is your most memorable or challenging moments while you’re shooting a drama here in Cambodia? Andrea: The most memorable moment would be my last shooting day because we started do the heavy scene. And I like doing scene like that, I think it’s really fulfilling when you get to cry (laugh). I like that.
Mikael: My training. I’m training 4 hours or 6 hours a day, so that’s really new. I might be a real Muai Thai Champion (laugh). So here in Cambodia, they’re actually teaching real Bokator. And that’s been fun. It’s something so new to me, and it’s definitely my most memorable experience. THEMAN: Have you had any experience with the martial arts before? How do you find Bokator?
Mikael: I’m training for almost twice or four times a week. Four hours a day. So, martial arts are new to me, stunt fighting is relatively new to me. So, everything is so new, everything is a huge challenge. It’s tiring and hurt a lot, but it’s been fun because I know it’s going to do very well for our movie. Like I said, it’s been really interesting, and I know every day I will be improving, so I just keep on going. THEMAN: Andrea, do you find any differences between your role in Blood in Dispute and your other previous movie?
Andrea: I think of all the roles I did; this is the one where most people see themselves because it’s not complicated, the story that I did before was very heavy. This one I think they can really do. THEMAN: How do you prepare yourself knowing that you will be working with Cambodian actors?
Andrea: We did our homework. I read the script, and I make sure that I know my character very well. So when I come here, I would just be very open to whatever happen because I don’t know what to expect. It’s the first time that we do have a co-production in the Philippines. So, I couldn’t really ask questions.
Mikael:out what Well,our roles preparationand commentsis really simple—weare, it’s usual havefor thea script, requirementwe find for moviejust figure shooting. things And out. we just decided we’re going to drop in here; we THEMAN:fans? How do you feel when you’re well accepted by Cambodian
Andrea:have a movie We’re here, happy, and and work we with didn’t Cambodianexpect this actors.that we’reSo, I’m going alwaysto excited whenever I have projects here in Cambodia, whenever I have to do promotion in Cambodia because everyone treats us like we’re Cambodian as well. It’s the same how they welcome us here; it’s the same with people in the Philippines.
Mikael: Like I said earlier, they’re very hospitable, they’re very nice. In a way, they’re really similar to the Philippines. They say hi, they ask ‘hey can I take a photo?’ and they smile at you, and they say ‘more photos” and I say ok (laugh).
THEMAN: Let’s move on a bit to fashion, how do you define fashion?
Andrea: For me, fashion is the way to express yourself, so there shouldn’t have rules, you shouldn’t afraid to try new dress or to make up your own style. So, I’m pretty playful when it comes to fashion. I like trying different looks.
Mikael: Fashion! She hits the nail on the head. I think fashion is a great way to express yourself. Actually just now that I’m really into what I wear, before I really didn’t care what I wear. Whatever I see on my closet I’m like pssh, but now you know since it’s such an important part of our industry, of my work, then it’s something more that I involve with. I do enjoy experiment thing such as matching my socks, my shoes (laugh).
THEMAN: How do you describe your own style?
Andrea: I don’t know—I try different look all the time. It’s always feminine, I like skirts, I like dresses. Even if I go for a rocker chick look, I always make sure that I look feminine and good (laugh). Mikael: Me, I used to be very laid back. But now I cannot say that my outfits are laid back. Nowadays I’m more adventurous. I like color nowadays, I like a lot of color. I like mixing and matching, I’d do anything or whatever I see, I’ll go for it. THEMAN: Since you’re busy with your career, how do you maintain your fitness?
Mikael: Oh, just eat and eat and eat. Just kidding (laugh).
Andrea: We just always find time to go to the gym—should be our priority. Sometimes I wake up at 5am, just to go to the gym or after work I go to the gym, just because I want to burn everything. Mikael: A few weeks after 5am, I’m up around 12 midnight. Andrea: Yeah, gym gets us crazy (laugh). THEMAN: What’s one thing that people will be surprised to know about you?
Andrea: I eat a lot, I guess. They always think that I eat so little, but I actually can finish three cupcakes. Sometimes I can finish one big burger by myself, I can finish two cups of fries by myself.
Mikael: Well, for Cambodian, they don’t know that I have 8 brothers and sisters. I am number 2 of 9 kids, and yeah it’s fun in the house. It’s crazy all the time (giggle). THEMAN: Mikael, words from you for men here on how to be stylist and healthy?
Mikael: Being healthy first—I think being healthy is eating right. You can eat anything you want, but at the same time you need to know what’s good for you. So, you don’t drink a lot of beer every day—that’s bad for you, right. You need to do everything in moderation. Basically, balance your diet will be the best for you. I don’t think you should cut out anything like, if you like rice, you can eat rice, if you like noodle, you can eat noodle, if you like beer you can drink beer; but I think you need to balance between everything you eat or all the different kind of food that you eat. In terms of trying to be stylist, I think you shouldn’t be care about what other people say. If you’re happy with what you’re wearing, then you’re happy. That’s all it matters. THEMAN: The last question, any last message for your fans in Cambodia?
Andrea: Of course, a big big thank you for supporting “It Might Be You”. Please wait for “With A Smile”, it’s coming soon and of course, “Blood in Dispute”. Thank you so much for always inviting us, and always welcome us.
Mikael: Big orkun to Cambodians, and thank you always for feeding us the food (laugh). I hope that every year I get to come back. I hope every year, Cambodia will invite me and Andrea back here. We always be willingly, excitingly, enthusiastically, come over.
BIG ORKUN TO CAMBODIANS, AND THANK YOU FOR FEEDING US THE FOOD (LAUGH). I HOPE
THAT EVERY YEAR I GET TO COME BACK.