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EXCLUSIVE: Rapper Abra on his first movie experience: ‘I gained a new respect for actors’

Rapper Abra talks about his newfound respect for the acting process.

BY
Rhea Manila Santos

Twitter: @allaboutmanila

FRESH SCOOPS

09/20/2017 10:25 AM
EXCLUSIVE: Rapper Abra on his first movie experience: ‘I gained a new respect for actors’

 

With the start of the commercial run of his indie film Respeto in cinemas nationwide starting September 20, rapper Raymond “Abra” Abracosa admitted he did not expect his Cinemalaya film entry would be so well received. “Hindi ko in-expect na may iiyak lagi tapos may standing ovation. Four times ko na ata siya napanuod at laging nagpapalakpakan yung audience. Sobrang overwhelming kasi wala kaming ini-expect and wala ring nag-e-expect from us. And to see that the outcome to be beyond expectations so magical. Sobrang sarap and sobrang thankful kami na na-appreciate nila ng sobra. Solid (laughs). Nung lumabas na yung film at napanuod ko siya, parang alam ko naman na magugustuhan ito ng mga tao kasi maganda talaga and magaling yung pagkaka-execute,” he told PUSH.

After his first film project, the 26-year-old artist said he learned a lot from the whole process. “First off, I gained a new respect for actors and their art and for those beyond the camera. Yung kabuuan ng film is so much fun, so much art to do, so much creativity goes around, you get to learn to apply and incorporate in your own art. So ang nakita ko dun yung dedication ng cast sa character nila, the way they say their lines, yung emotion na nag-co-correspond perfectly for every line and how they deliver it so well. Ang galing how they get into character. Ang galing sila direk how they get you into character. Kahawig siya ng rap eh at pagawa ng music pero much more disciplined. So yun yung nakita ko na maganda rin itong disiplina na ito kasi makakatulong ito sa dynamics ng isang verse or rap song,” he explained.


Abra admitted he did not want to prepare too much for the role of Hendrix, an aspiring rapper. “Ewan ko. To be honest hindi ako nag super prepare. Hindi ko alam, mga tatlong beses ko lang ata pinasadahan yung buong script at isa sa parteng yung yung reading pa namin. Na-gets ko kasi agad yung character na sa tingin ko hindi ko kailangan baguhin yung sarili ko. Kailangan ko lang mag-channel ng sadness, ng lungkot, ng pagka-lost, ng struggle na makikita niyo sa movie. Yung internal and external conflict, parang madali lang dahil ako si ako pero mahirap rin kasi dapat hindi ako. Dapat hindi nila maisip na si Abra uma-acting, dapat si Hendrix yan. Ang hirap din nun,” he said.

Although he is one of the country’s most popular rappers, Abra said there is a side of him people don’t usually see in the movie. “Yung pagka-expressive ko siguro ng emotion (laughs). Usually ganun lang ako sa mga kaibigan ko eh. Alam mo yun? Yung mga tao pag nakikita ka they only see 1% of your life so hindi talaga nila makikilala kung sino ka. Pero they get to see yung mga posibleng drama na nangyari sa buhay ko na dun ko naipakita (laughs). Kung ano yung kamukha nung sitwasyon na yun. Parang akala nila rap lang ako. Tao lang din ako at yung mga makikita niyo dun makaka-relate kayo kasi ganun talaga ang tao. Ganun talaga ang buhay,” he added.

Out of all the scenes in the film, Abra said the dramatic moments were the most challenging for him. “First time ko mag-ga-ganun eh. Kasi sanay naman ako humarap sa camera pag mga music videos or (rap) battles pero most of the time pagpapatawa, pagke-kenkoy, just having fun but not really to the extent na sobrang emo. Parang I had to channel a lot just to execute that role which is first time ko ginawa. Buti na lang ang gagaling ng mga kasama ko na in-explain nila sa akin kung paano mag-channel ng mga bagay bagay. Talagang finocus ko yun ng mga panahon na yun and gumagana naman talaga. Mahirap nga lang (laughs). Ang sad kasi ng in-imagine ko nun eh. Masaya na challenging at exciting matutunan pa lalo,” he admitted.

After doing Respeto, the talented rapper said he would be open to do more acting in the future. “Yeah open naman ako and na-e-excite naman ako pag sobrang lupit ng concept at nung role na binigay. Pero honestly gusto ko talaga mag-dwell sa sarili kong elements through music kasi marami akong kailangan bawiin na songs. Kasi yun talaga yung foundation ng pagiging artist ko. Pero sobrang nag-open ng utak ko sabay ng pag open ng doors into this film world. As an artist yung goal ko talaga sa sarili ko is to always put out stuff that is beyond mediocre, na ipakita talaga kung ano yung galing ng Pilipino dahil andiyan naman lahat ng resources pero meron naman diyang ‘puwede na yan’ attitude na hindi ko talaga trip. At nakakatuwa dahil sa pelikula na ito wala nun. Sobrang talagang dedicated lahat at nakakatuwa dahil part din kami nun at naimbag namin yung ka-O.C-han namin dito and it turned out to be something phenomenal. Sobrang lupit lang hindi ako makapaniwala,” he explained.

In the next few months, fans of Abra can look forward to him going back to his first love. “Actually maraming-marami ang mangyayari. Maglalabas ako ng sarili kong album iniisip ko pa yung pangalan pero 18 tracks yun, 12 songs. Lalabas siya pure indie next month. Pagkatapos nun maglalabas pa ako ng isa pang solo album as Abra at saka babalik ako sa battle scene. Uumayin ko muna sarili ko sa music kasi ang sarap mag-dwell at mag-create. F*** the money,” he concluded.