Although I’ve only known actor PEPE HERRERA for a short period of time, I’m fully aware of how immensely talented he is. I watched him belt-out some of my most favorite Sugarfree songs in the musical Sa Wakas, seen several movies that I didn’t know that he’s in, and even caught his death scene in the action series Ang Probinsyano. Whether you know him as Benny (Ang Probinsyano), Tolits (Rak of Aegis), Cesar (Forevermore), or Eman (Ang Pangarap Kong Holdap), Pepe surely gave life to these characters for everyone to remember.
Before our sit-down, I had this misconception of him. Don’t get me wrong, the guy is extremely effortlessly funny. It’s evident with all the laughing I did in the interview (sorry, not sorry). I just thought that he’s the type that would just make fun of everything that he’s going to say. That I won’t get a serious answer from any of my questions, which I really didn’t mind since I just want to have light conversations with all my interviewees anyway. But Pepe surprised me though. He has a sense of earnestness in him that’s not obstructive. He can carry a conversation that will take you from one topic to another that you’d gladly go along. He’s honest to a fault, at least in our interview, that I very much embraced. He openly talked about the amount of popularity that for a time he couldn’t handle but after taking a break, and made that necessary reset, he’s back to take things in stride.
His latest movie Ang Pangarap Kong Holdap had a bit of a hiccup with major cinemas because of its title. The Marius Talampas movie was accused to be sending a “bad connotation” to the public for “glorifying” theft, which honestly is all BS to me and evidently to a lot of people. Enough clamor and support for the movie was made that it was eventually shown in select cinemas and I was able to watch it. As expected, it was funny as hell.
Pepe and I met at one of my favorite places in QC, at Tomato Kick, a restaurant owned by my friend Mara Bernaldo located at Malingap St. Teacher’s Village. It has the best ambiance for hanging out with friends, and they also have the best food. It wasn’t a surprise that later in the night after my interview with Pepe, it was packed with after work diners and odd day drinking millennials.
Because he knew that he was going to be late, Pepe brought buko juice as peace offering, not knowing that I’m not really that upset for his tardiness and that I already have buko ready for the both of us. I used my metal straw to punch a hole and drink my juice and Pepe didn’t use any straw at all. He hates plastic, he abhors it. You can see it on his social media that he’s been participating in beach clean-ups almost every week, something that he said he learned from his brother. He’s an Earth warrior and mighty proud of it. Watch my interview with Pepe as we talk about the best thing about being 31, how he handles fame, and why he likes buko juice.
Follow Pepe on Instagram.