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Kapamilya Spotlight: Zanjoe Marudo’s remarkable, heart-warming television stints through the years

Mary Ann Bardinas September 13, 2018 01:10 PM

In his 12 years in the entertainment industry, Zanjoe Marudo has proven his brilliance and versatility as an actor. From strutting on runways and gracing the glossy pages of magazines, he is now tramping on a stellar career as an actor for television and movies.

Just like the other celebrities we admire at the present, his ticket to show business was joining a reality show. In 2006, he was among the first batch of celebrity housemates of Pinoy Big Brother alongside Keanna Reeves, John Prats, and Bianca Gonzales and was hailed as the 4th Big Placer by the end of competition.

With his unmistakable good looks, palpable charisma, and impressive talent, it was not surprising when a slew of television and movie projects were dropped onto his lap just on his freshman year.

His first-ever regular stint was in the sitcom Aalog-alog, in which he was able to develop and expose his knack in comedy through his hilarious antics as Banjoe Rosales and rib-tickling banters with his co-stars, such as John Prats, Jayson Gainza, Pokwang, Keanna Reeves, Kim Chiu, and Gerald Anderson.

In 2008, he was able to score his first starring role in a teleserye through Dyosa. He portrayed Mars, the comic illustrator from Makiling Publishing, who was behind the masterpiece “Dyosa” and had fallen in love to the mortal figure of the titular character Josephine (Anne Curtis) and her another persona Dyosa Cielo.

A year after, he once again showed off his comedic flair in the sitcom Pare Koy as the dashing, playboy, and homophobic Mario who worked as a waiter. It’s his second team-up with Jayson Gainza and John Prats, who stood as his dependable and quirky buddies Jessy and Joseph.

2009 had been a productive year for Zanjoe as he appeared on three series that year, namely, The Wedding, Florinda, and Lovers in Paris.

The Wedding
was his reunion project with Anne, in which he portrayed the lowly yet hardworking contractor Marlon Mañalac, whose ambition to live a well-off life fuelled him to accept Candice’s (Anne Curtis) offer to stand as her lover. However, their supposed business agreement turned into a romantic engagement as they eventually fell in love with each other.

Afterwards, he was tapped to take on the role of Archie, the love interest of Roxanne Guinoo’s Rachelle in the TV adaptation of the 1973 Susan Roces flick Florinda.  It might only be a supporting gig but he was able to contribute to the exciting narrative of the suspense drama.

He thrilled us anew when he portrayed the happy-go-lucky and boy-next-door band drummer Martin, originally by Lee Dong-gun, in the Filipino incarnation of the hit 2004 Korean series Lovers in Paris. He figured in a love triangle with his Uncle Carlo (Piolo Pascual) and the special girl in his life Vivian (KC Concepcion).

Zanjoe turned our afternoons fierier as he top-billed Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Hiyas. He was Silang, a native warrior whose intense admiration for his childhood sweetheart and concern for their tribe drove him to go the distance in order to bring back the missing Gem of Tanah and find his one true love along the way – Sapphire (Megan Young).

Although he already had a taste of being a father in the 2006 adventure series Super Inggo as Super Islaw, it was in 2013 when his reputation as an in-demand young on-screen dad had begun, after he was tasked to do daddy roles in his next teleseryes.

The first one was as Gideon “Guido” Querubin, in the remake of the 80’s drama Annaliza, where he stood as a doting father to the titular character despite not having biological connection.

That same situation went on in Dream Dad, where he assumed the responsibility of being a dad to Baby (Jana Agoncillo), who was then yearning for familial affection after her biological mom Bebeth (Yen Santos) took her over to the same orphanage where his character Sebastian “Baste” Javier scouted her as the face of their company’s flagship brand Wink Milk. Even though Baby got reunited with her mother and it was proven that he was not her real dad, he remained as her legal guardian.

In 2016, he landed the role of Renato “Natoy” Villadolid in the soap opera Tubig at Langis, whose marriage with his wife Irene (Cristine Reyes) was put to the test after the interference of the third party Clara (Isabelle Daza), who did everything just to tear their relationship apart. Amidst of all his shortcomings and mistakes as a husband, the series bared his love towards Mico (Miguel Vergara), Irene’s son with another man and their own children Nathan and Emily.

Last year, the seasoned actor once again warmed our hearts with his paternal role in the primetime series My Dear Heart as the responsible adoptive father to Heart (Nayomi Ramos), Jude de Jesus. Initially, we thought that the story of his character would be the same in his past portrayals, but it was later on revealed that the sick kid he’s taking care of was actually his lovechild with his former flame Gia (Ria Atayde).

Beginning September 17, let’s brace ourselves as Zanjoe is about to engross us with his another charismatic character and expectedly impressive performance as Marlon in Playhouse, his first team-up with his former Banana Split co-mainstay Angelica Panganiban, who will play as his wife Patty. As their marriage is on the brink of getting nullified, an unforeseen circumstance would revitalize their shattered relationship.