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Given the right role…

HE DELIVERS – Given the right role, Aljur Abrenica proves in a recent episode of “Maalaala Mo Kaya” that he can act…and act well. He delivers as they say in showbiz.

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But then he’s shown this earlier in the historical epic “Hermano Puli,” directed by the late Gil Portes, written by Eric Ramos, and produced by Rex Tiri. In fact, he merited a best actor nomination from the Film Academy of the Philippines (Luna Awards).

Remember Aljur’s wooden tag years back? He then played the wooden statue “Machete” in a GMA series. Said to be the “perfect role” for Aljur as his acting was best described as “parang kahoy.”

Well, not anymore. Imagine holding his own against the formidable Chanda Romero in that MMK episode, where she portrayed a teacher turned janitress. Aljur was her “pasaway” son.

MARBLE – While at it, it’ll be recalled that award-winning actor Dingdong Dantes was panned early in his career. That his acting was as alive as a marble statue.

Of course, Dingdong looks like a Greek god statue made of the finest marble. But that is beside the point. The point is he turned into a fine actor…thanks to the right role – and project and director.

‘MAJESTIC’ – In the same mold, more or less, as Aljur and Dingdong, was Zanjoe Marudo early on.

His performance was billed “Majestic” – as in the “jamon’s” brand. He was aware of that and so he worked long hard to improve his acting.

In time, Zanjoe turned into good and versatile actor. He’s at home in drama and comedy.

QUIET BUT INTENSE – Alma Moreno is no Nora Aunor or Vilma Santos. Not even Elizabeth Oropesa. They are her contemporaries who won awards after awards.

Well, at the box-office Alma was bankable, but it was noted she was “napag-iwanan” in the acting department. That is until she was cast in the drama “Kapalit,” where she was torn between invalid husband (Victor Neri) and sincere suitor (Jay Manalo).

Under the direction of Mel Chionglo, Alma gave a moving performance, quiet but intense. Heartfelt. It took a good director to draw out the best in Alma.

To be fair, Alma was quite good in comedy. And she showed promise in her early films directed by Ishmael Bernal, “Ligaw na Bulaklak” and “City After Dark.”

This columnist hopes to see Alma Moreno in a Mater Dolorosa role. Which she is in real life when one thinks of the plight of her son Mark Anthony Fernandez.

Why not a Mel Chionglo-Alma Moreno reunion in a movie or on TV?