MANILA — At 25 years old, Miles Ocampo can be considered a relative veteran in show business, with a career spanning two decades in the last year.
With these years of experience, it is not surprising that Ocampo did justice physically and emotionally to Marites in “FPJ’s Batang Quiapo”, which drew great praise and made her social media friendly.
More than a week since his pilot appearance in the ABS-CBN teleserye, Ocampo continues to ardently overwhelm the views for his portrayal of an assault victim, an expectant mother expecting an abortion, and later, a woman embracing motherhood.
Doubly impressive to viewers of “Batang Quiapo” is the late revelation that most, if not all, of the scripted series of scenes, including the sea birth and exercise with the mother, portrayed by Lara Quigaman.
“Lumaki ako doon sa ang bible namin’ yung script namin talaga. Let mga directors and writers na tell you your line as it is, sa script talaga,” he told ABS-CBN News.
Rejecting the role offered — she was caught by her former co-star Coco Martin, who is also the lead actor and director of “Batang Quiapo” — Ocampo shared: “Siyempre, bago mo takoman ang project, “Pabasa po ng script. ‘Wala pong script,’ sabi sa akin. ‘Ah, well, keep going!’
“Parang ako, with Kuya Coco naman siya, Dreamscape naman siya, lang ako,” he said, referring to ABS-CBN’s production unit Dreamscape Entertainment. “Nag-fide ako kasi alam ko naman kung gaano sila kagaling mugawa ng mga project nila.”
The task proved to be both challenging and rewarding for Ocampo, who believed in his star collaborators, Martin and Quigaman, because they were consistent and generous in exchanging lines and emotions.
“You’ve got it ready at all times. Hindi ka puwedeng relax lang lang samba sa pone,” he said. “You have to be ready to be kasi talaga spontaneous. You must also say it. Kung ano ibabato sa ‘io, ia-accipe mo lang. Iyon’ yung pasawak ka sa set na dapat parato ka at may bala ka. Hindi mo alam kung ano ng ibibigay mong bala , basta may bala ka lang
The crudeness of the show resonated with the weekly viewership of “Batang Quiapo,” if the social media buzz is anything to go by. Ocampo, in particular, is also among the world’s trends on Twitter for the number of her stage husbands.
“ang totoo, noong ginagawa ko ‘yung project, wala akong ini-wait na something,” Ocampo said. “Ang confident po ako talaga, ginalingan ko. Alam ko sa sarili kong ginalingan ko at binigay ko ang best ko.”
Ocampo described Marites’ response as “overwhelming.” He personally received congratulatory messages from colleagues and ABS-CBN executives, and was heard left and right saying “Anak ko ‘yan!” verses from friends and strangers.
Most of all, he praised the performance “Ocampo-opened the windows” for the opportunities that he intends to do the most.
“Maraming pinto at binta ang nagbukas mihi because of “Batang Quiapo.” I have gratitude talaga, Hanggang ngayon, kahit saan ako magpunta talaga, ‘Batang Quiapo.’ Ang dami ko pong naging anak ngayon bigla!’Anak ko ‘yan!’ Iyon na po ang tawag sa akin.
“Until now, paulit-ulit ko sinasabi, Hindi ako makapinuya kasi Hindi po talaga ako makapinuya. I am happy na hangyang ngayon, maybe nakaka-appreciate pa rin sa trabaho ko, sa ginagawa ko,” he said.
Interestingly, this latest break for Ocampo comes on the cusp of his 20th birthday in showbiz, and as he approaches that celebration, the former child star has a clearer-than-ever view of the heights he hopes to climb.
“Habang sikke, hindi mo na meta’ yung maging sobrang sikat. This is a long time, iyon na “yung meta ko… Gusto ko makitas ako bilang magaling na artist, hindi sikat na artist. Kahit tumanda ako, “pag sinabi ang panganal ko — ‘Oops, magaling ‘yan.’
“Nandito ako sa scene na kailangan ko siyang ngangan, kailangan ko siyang ngangan is flattered, nam Hindi langang” yung tiwala at galing na nakita nila sa akin, ng mga tao,” he said.
In a sit-down interview with ABS-CBN News, Ocampo also spoke fluently about his showbiz beginnings, including his time as a member of “Goin’ Bulilit”; his milestones, so that he led the first roles on TV as a teen (“And so I love you”) and on the big screen (“Write about Love”); and sailing on the bed.