The force of the DonKiss tandem is currently unstoppable. From acquiring a strong and loyal fanbase to trending on social media on the daily, Donny Pangilinan and Kisses Delavin are two of the most raved about showbiz darlings these days. As it seems, these charmers are skyrocketing to stardom with nowhere to go but up. And the fact that they're only getting started only makes them all the more promising.
If we're basing on social media numbers, there's no doubt that DonKiss reigns supreme. After topping the ABS-CBN Ball's Fan Fave poll, Donny, Kisses, and their avid supporters proved to us that this love team isn't one to be slept on. Their red carpet moment at the grandest entertainment event of the year was nothing short of dazzling–Kisses stunning in a sparkling princess-like gown and Donny looking dashing with a bouquet of flowers for the belle of the ball. The two are no stranger to fancy arrivals like this. Last year, Donny escorted Kisses at her debut, and, from there, their fairytale-like tandem has sprung.
Fans instantly hinged on this young pairing. A little over a year later, after making noise in and out of the social media sphere, Donny and Kisses finally nabbed their first project together in the form of the millennial-oriented film Walwal. Soon afterwards, they were confirmed to star in the serye Playhouse which is now airing every morning on ABS-CBN. Kisses takes on the role of warm-hearted yet fierce Sheila while Donny plays the athlete and quick-witted charmer Zeke.
As newbies in the industry, Donny and Kisses felt some pressure, considering that it’s their first time to star in a series. “Sobrang nervous kami from the start, di namin alam kung anong i-eexpect namin,” Donny admits “But as time passed, nawala din ‘yun. We were just so excited to start working all the way.”
Luckily, they have each other as they start to expand their horizons as artists. When asked about what they cherish the most about working together, Kisses says, “Nag-eenjoy lang kami, at sabay kaming natututo.” Donny affirms this, adding, “We’re there to help each other, to be a team, and to make each other feel less conscious and be more relaxed.”
On set, the vibe fits the title of the series itself. Kisses reveals, “Parang nasa classroom lang kami na gumagawa ng school project kasi nagtutulungan lahat. Tapos ‘pag recess, sabay-sabay kumakain. ‘Yung mga kasama namin sa Playhouse palaging nagdadala ng food. Ang saya-saya.” The light-hearted, non-intimidating air helps especially for fresh actors like Donny and Kisses. With seasoned cast members like Zanjoe Marudo, Angelica Panganiban, and Smokey Manoloto, the two stars feel right at home and find more opportunities to hone their craft.
Being the two young leads in the series, they have each other to lean on especially when preparing for a scene. Donny shares, “Kapag kailangan niya ng tulong, tutulungan ko siya. Kapag kailangan ko ng tulong, tutulungan niya rin ako. I think it’s just getting to know the scenes together and talking about what we can do to make it better.”
Now that this is their second project together, Donny and Kisses have discovered things about each other that we got curious to know. For Donny, one thing he admires about his co-star is the liveliness she always bring to the set. “Kahit walang tulog ‘yan, gagawin niya ang lahat, sobrang energetic niyan. She’s hardworking, and that makes it easy to work with her,” he tells.
Kisses has the same praises for Donny, sharing to us that he has a bright-eyed disposition towards work. She mentions, “Gusto niya may improvement lagi. Maganda ‘yun na hindi ka napapagod i-improve ang sarili mo.”
It's comforting to find out that these two are giving their best shot at every opportunity that they are blessed with. And their fans would be delighted to know that their unconditional support is what motivates their idols. “I cannot put into words kung gaano ko na-aappreciate ‘yung love nila, kaya I always do my best in everything that I do,” Kisses says gratefully.
From Walwal to Playhouse, Donny and Kisses are set to take on the showbiz scene together in the foreseeable future. By the end of the year, we will witness them join the all-star cast of the 2018 Metro Manila Film Festival entry Fantastica led by Vice Ganda. Surely, big things are in store for these two, and we’ll be staying on the lookout. “We have a sort of friendship that we still want to grow,” Donny says in passing, keeping us at the edge of our seats. Take what you will from it, but we won’t hold it against you if you felt that spark called kilig.
Playhouse airs weekdays on ABS-CBN at 11:15am.
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Photographed by Shaira Luna
Creative Direction by Madel Asuncion
Art Direction by Mikka Caronan
Styled by Ryuji Shiomitsu
Makeup by Lala Flores
Hair and Grooming by Rose Cabrera