It wasn’t too long ago when actress Jane De Leon was chosen as the newest actress to play the role of iconic Filipina superheroine Darna in a movie reboot.
But it seems that with the COVID-19 pandemic, Darna’s return might be delayed even further.
The search for the perfect Darna didn’t go easy.
Liza Soberano was selected to play Darna after Angel Locsin had to bow out due to injuries. But unfortunately, Liza was injured by co-actor Justin Cuyugan during the taping of Bagani last August, which delayed the taping of the film because she had to undergo surgery.
“Naaksidente siya sa stunt sa ‘Bagani’ pa ito, medyo matagal-tagal na. Kailangang operahan para maging mas mabuti siya sa mga stunts kasi di niya magalaw ang finger niya, kailangan talagang gawin. Saka inaayos pa yung script ng Darna,”
Her surgery was successful but Liza tearfully announced that she had withdrawn from Darna, citing medical reasons.
“Unfortunately, after consultation with her doctors, it was deemed best for Liza not to pursue the project as the injury shall hamper her from effectively doing the movie stunts required.”
After Liza left, auditions were held for the new Darna. ABS-CBN Films’ managing director Olivia Lamasan later confirmed the news that Jane de Leon had been chosen to become the new Darna.
“We have found a new Darna and she is none other than Jane de Leon!”
According to Lamasan, from the almost 300 auditionees for the iconic role, De Leon bagged the role via “a unanimous decision.”
“Natuwa nga ako na isa siya sa mga nag-audition. Sabi ko ay there’s something about her. Pati si Direk Lauren (Dyogi) said there’s something about her. Bilang filmmakers, may nakikita kami. Malakas ang instinct ng bata,”
But Jane de Leon needs to make sure she ‘s fit for a physically challenging job. The 20-year-old dancer showed a snapshot of her workout routine with Celebrity Fitness Trainer Culver Padilla.
Besides preparing physically, she has been preparing herself mentally for the demands of the job and the pressure that comes with it.
“Mentally, nakaka-pressure, kasi siyempre, everyone nag-e-expect sa akin. But it’s okay, nandiyan naman ang family and friends ko, especially the management to guide me. ‘Pag nagwo-worry ako, nagpe-pray lang ako para mawala.”
But unfortunately, ABS-CBN announced in March that all taping will be temporarily halted. The announcement was made in compliance with government guidelines for a Metro Manila lockdown to manage the coronavirus outbreak.
And worse, last May 5, the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) issued a cease and desist order against ABS-CBN, forcing it to suspend on-air operations.
With the new normal protocols that need to be followed in this pandemic, is there still a possibility that Darna will fly again on the big screen?