Photography: Stephen Capuchino
They are the hottest boys of this generation. With their oozing charisma onscreen with uber-gwapo beautiful faces, Marco Gumabao, Kit Thompson, and Fino Herrera bring to life your crushes from the iWant shows Apple of My Eye, MOMOL Nights, and Mga Batang Poz.
Online streaming website and app iWant.ph has been producing quality original series and movies where we discover the freshest stories and faces.
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StarStudio.ph invited over these three boys that captured our hearts from watching shows on iWant. In these exclusive interviews, Marco, Kit, and Fino talk about their personal life, love, and career.
Ladies, hold your horses because these boys will extremely give you kilig overload!
He is hot from the success of his movie Just A Stranger with no less than Anne Curtis, but before all those sexy scenes and unconventional relationship setup of the story, Marco was an adventurous boy growing up.
“Lagi akong lumalabas ng bahay with my neighbors and kami ‘yung isa sa mga village na lahat ng tao lumalabas, because maraming mga villages na tahimik, diba?” Marco narrates. “Luckily for me, ang dami kong nakilalang friends or playmates sa village namin. I was really exposed to a lot of Pinoy games.”
Marco has established himself as someone who goes out and joins the people from his younger years. It is something that helped him define himself today, something that allowed him to know himself. This is also because of his parents who let him explore the world on his own.
“Ako thankful ako kasi my parents weren’t strict. Pinabayaan nila ako to enjoy my childhood.”
He has eight siblings: three half brothers and an only boy to five sisters. Marco admittingly says that he is a proud Mama’s boy to former Pitoy Moreno model Lollie Imperial. He also shares that his family is close to one another.
In school, Marco was very sporty, actively participating in basketball, volleyball, swimming, and muay thai. During his fourth year high school in Ateneo, Marco was recognized for winning at the Ultimate Knockout Challenge or UKC, a Muay Thai competition outside school. Those were also the times Marco is trying to enter the world of showbiz.
Marco continued college at De La Salle University but stopped after his first term in second year taking up Psychology to focus on his career. Marco describes himself, “I’m not the best student, that’s for sure. Ako ‘yung makulit, ako yung magulo. Pero, end of the day, pumapasa.” For him, having the freedom to study at his own pace made him really happy.
However, life has not spoiled Marco all the time. Despite his stability as a young boy with good friends, a supportive family, and a budding showbiz career at 16, he had to mature faster than normal. “Kasi nakulong ‘yung Daddy ko. So feeling ko yung most challenging part ay to try to alam mo yung stand up for my family since sa mommy ko nga, I mentioned na diba, only boy ako, so sa house namin …” Marco points out, “noong nawala yung dad ko, nawala yung pinaka-Padre de Pamilya. So, at a young age I had to mature faster. I had to be more responsible.”
Marco’s father, a former congressman and actor, Dennis Roldan was twice: first when Marco was 10 years old and second when he was already 20.
The Just A Stranger star might have hidden his woes somewhere to appear just fine to fans, but he never let them get the best of him. Marco managed himself well by keeping in mind what he values the most: God, family, and friends.
When showbiz started to make him feel like he belonged there, Marco was advised that he has to show that he really wanted it. It all started in 2011 when he got the role of Miles Ocampo’s love team partner for the Sunday youth-oriented show Luv U. He did not show much interest in acting. In fact, he was just after the money then. “Syempre high school ka tapos you were earning your money, syempre iba yun, diba,” he explains. After landing his first role, everything else seemed to follow through—and the passion deepened.
He started working out and following a proper diet. “Maintaining your body is the hardest part especially when it comes to food kasi yung food mo dapat yung pinaka-importante sa lahat because you can work out everyday pero ‘di mo pa rin makuha yung body na gusto mo.....” he explains. “If you want to have a good body, fried food talaga ‘yung dapat mong iwasan.”
Just when he thought everything progressed well, Marco had to rest from showbiz for two years, all because of love.
“Kapag nag-girlfriend ako siya lang focus ko, na minsan na-cocompromise ‘yung ibang mga bagay which is dapat hindi ganun,” he shares, talking about his ways of courtship.
“Yung sa ex ko, ‘yun yung second, siya yung longest kong relationship. Sa kanya talaga ako first head over heels,” Marco narrates. “Lahat ng partying ko, lahat ng ginagawa ko, dati tinigil ko para makasama siya. Pati work ko, ‘di na ako tumatanggap ng work before.”
He shares that he was young back then and multitasking was not one of the best things he was good at, so he chose to just focus on his ex-girlfriend. However, the couple broke up after Marco’s terrible mistake: “Tumagal kami almost 2 years kaso nasira yung relationship because napa-cheat ako sa kaniya.”
“What I learned after that, walang sikretong ‘di mabubunyag, kahit sabihin mong konti lang tao may alam. Lalabas sya one way or another,” he says. “Just might as well not do it.”
This situation is not far from his recent movie Just A Stranger, a story of a married woman having an affair with a man half her age. He top-billed the movie with actress Anne Curtis, making it the talk of the town after releasing its trailer on August 2. 12 days after showing in cinemas, it hit the box office with Php 100 million nationwide gross.
His teamup with Anne sparked a little controversy because he had sexy scenes with his leading lady who is already married to travel and food vlogger Erwan Heussaff. Although Anne’s husband already defended her, we cannot help but ask Marco what is expected of him as an actor once he gets a girlfriend.
“Unang una before I court anyone or have a girlfriend, I’m gonna lay down, ipapaalam ko sa kanya ano ‘yung trabaho, ipapaintindi ko sa kanya ano yung trabaho so if she can understand it, okay,” he explains. “If hindi, malaking problema yun. That’s why now ‘di ako nag-gigirlfriend, kasi alam kong maraming tao ang hindi nakakaintindi ng ginagawa namin.”
In general, Marco just wants a girl with the right attitude. You may now take down notes: “Physically, mahirap sabihin because I don’t have a certain type. What makes you stay with a girl is ‘yung ugali. ‘Yung ugaling gusto ko sa babae, ayoko nung mga maarte. Gusto ko ‘yung kaya kong dalhin kung saan saan,” Marco continues, “Kaya niyang maging sosyal, kaya nyang maging hindi soyal. ‘Yung kaya nyang makisama sa lahat which is mahirap hanapin nowadays. Gusto ko ‘yung mababaw ‘yung kaligayahan, madaling patawanin, madaling pasayahin kasi ako I’m a very jolly guy.”
He had three girlfriends in the past, and Marco’s way of wooing a girl is just spending a lot of time with her. “Clingy, not in a sense na nakakasar, clingy siguro in a cute way. I’d like to think. ‘Di ako sakal na tao.”
Speaking of courtship and winning a girl’s heart, Marco’s iWant movie Apple of my Eye produced by Bela Padilla follows the story of a traditional girl who wants to find love free from technology but ended up falling for a web developer.
“Trivia lang: ‘yung Apple of My Eye, hindi dapat siya movie. Series dapat siya, so na-cut siya into a movie, so andaming eksena yung nawala,” he clarifies.
“We can say that technology is really important especially sa dating game. Maraming dating apps. It’s easier to know people and at the same time madali ka ring malok,” he says. “I can say na malaking tulong yung technology pero nakakamiss pa rin yung before thrill of seeing the person na parang for the first time. Mas exciting yung before pero mas madali yung ngayon. It’s a mix of both.”
In this era of jumping from one celebrity crush to another, Kit can be your stable crush every day. He is the hot, handsome, and humorous type rolled into one. This pretty face might have caught your attention just lately, but there is a lot for you to find out.
“The curious boy. A boy who’s eager to grow up to feel older. Most of my childhood, I spent in Pampanga in Angeles till I was about 14 until I joined fashion week,” Kit introduces his young self. “That’s why I ended up here.”
His parents, a Filipina mom, and a Kiwi dad, have always been supportive of his career and choices in life. His two brothers have always shown him just the same.
Before he began making a name for himself in Pinoy Big Brother Teen Edition at 15, Kit was also very sporty and outdoorsy. “I played a lot of basketball. I kinda wanted to be a basketball player, but then I realized how tall basketball players are and how hard it is to be a basketball player.”
Showbiz was not even part of his plans despite having a penchant for acting. “You go to school, you go to college then you get a job. That’s basically the mentality we’re set in. Getting into acting is not something foreseen.”
No one encouraged Kit to enter showbiz except for himself, so he grabbed the opportunity when he had it. He is also surprised to be still around after all this time.
Along the way, Kit experienced one of the most difficult times in his life. “My eldest brother passed away and that’s probably the most challenging phase I had to overcome but it’s all about your perception, the most important thing.” Even though he does not further discuss the details, he shares that it was already five years ago. It was also late that year when he starred as the hard-headed teenage boy in the movie #Y.
In 2016, Kit went on hiatus in showbiz to study film and tried his luck as an actor in New York. “As a new actor, it is almost impossible to get into a top agency. Everything’s by referral. You need to know this person to get into this agency,” he narrates his journey. “That doesn’t get you to the door. You still have to do your part. You go there and listen. There are a hundred, two hundred, three hundred more people that look exactly like you trying to get the same part.”
That time, he did not have plans of coming back to the Philippines. He was starting to feel comfortable knowing he could work there right after the school year.
“When I got offered this movie Belle Douleur probably almost a year and a half ago, I read it and I want to do it,” Kit reveals. “So I flew back and all these other things …” Cinemalaya.org introduces Belle Douleur as “the story of a woman’s journey of finding happiness as she breaks free from the confines that society puts on women”. Kit shares sexy scenes with co-star Mylene Dizon in this 2019 Cinemalaya film festival.
When it comes to acting, Kit does not see himself doing teeny roles anymore and instead is more interested in mature roles. In June, Kit’s name made noise along with co-star Kim Molina in the iWant movie MOMOL Nights. The story centers on a woman who tries to move on from a failed relationship through MOMOL until she meets someone to spend a one-night stand with.
Kit also reveals that fans can expect more mature roles as he did with Belle Douleur and MOMOL Nights. As he improves his acting, Kit also improves his physical appearance by working out and eating good food. One thing also helps him maintain his body: “It’s kinda hard at the same time ‘cause you need to maintain proper sleep also to maintain muscle.”
For someone who has everything, Kit manages to have a healthy love life. For him, love takes time. True enough because he met his girlfriend eight years ago at her birthday party she believes Kit crashed.
“Well, not crash her party but she claims that I crashed her party because I was not invited, but I was invited by her cousin so I think I was invited,” he gleefully narrates. “I met her there and years passed by because she’s a bit older. She’s four years older than me so she saw me as baby cute-cute you know.” Lea met Kit again—this time, bigger, and with a beard, in Los Angeles.
“So ‘yun we picked up from there. All of a sudden I just realized I never left her side since then so there you go,” he adds.
When asked how Kit courts a woman, the actor replies, “Parang continuous naman ‘yung panliligaw. ‘Di naman yun natatapos. Just keeping the spark there.” According to him, going to new places is also what keeps the relationship alive.
Yes, the world is ready to fall in love with him too.
Fresh, fierce, and fun—that is Fino Herrera. Many viewers applauded him for his acting in his first-ever major series on the iWant series Mga Batang Poz. He was born in Quezon City but grew up in Cavite. The budding actor now stays in San Juan to be nearer to his workplace.
Being family-oriented as he is, Fino always makes himself available for his family. “Kung ‘di ako nasa work, kasama ko sila sa condo. Like si ate, lagi ko siyang kasama. Kung wala akong work, ihahatid ko siya sa work niya, tapos ‘pag nagpapasundo naman siya, susunduin ko siya then sabay kami magdidinner.” Fino and his sister go home to Cavite every weekend to join their parents.
As a child, Fino was a playful boy. “Hilig ko kasi, maglaro. Kahit dalawang laruan lang pwede niyo na ako iwanan, mga 8 hours,” he describes. Everything seemed bright for Fino but not until their family went through a difficult time.
“Muntik na maghiwalay ‘yung parents ko,” he reveals. “Pero ‘yun nga, nalagpasan namin.” It made their family stronger than ever. His parents even grew fonder together, too. “Mas naging okay sila, mas naging open sila sa isa’t isa and mas tumibay talaga ‘yung relationship nila.”
Life came back on track and, Fino landed into places he never planned or wanted. Maybe some things, no matter how people resist them, will always be meant for them. Showbiz started eyeing on Fino in 2017. “May gagawing AVP (audiovisual presentation) kasi ‘yung Mapua. Tatlo kaming napiling gaganap sana sa bida,” Fino shares. “Yung dalawang guy pumunta na sila sa auditon. Ako, ‘di ako pumunta. Parang ilang weeks nila ako hinintay for the audition ... Binlock nila yung ID ko. No choice na ako kundi pumunta sa audition. After a week … sabi, ako raw napili for the AVP.”
His appearance in his college AVP catapulted many opportunities for Fino. He remembers a few of his acting gigs after that: “Funny Ka, Pare Ko, partner ako nung babaeng humuhugot. Sa Wansa, support kina Barbie at Hashtag Ryle.”
It became a game changer when the iWant advocacy series Mga Batang Poz was shown (and continually aired) July 26. Fino played the character of Luis, a 15-year-old Filipino-Chinese teenager who explores his sexuality and gets addicted to unprotected sex. The iWant series promotes HIV (or human immunodeficiency virus) awareness as it tackles stories of four diverse gay youngsters.
“Actually nakakatuwa, nakakataba ng puso kasi sobrang daming message sa’yo na bukod sa magaling, ‘yung message nila na salamat kasi naging boses ka namin,” he happily shares. “Tapos ayun nga, ‘dahil sa ginawa niyo, magpapa HIV test na ako’. Sabi ko nga ang galing.” Fino also shares that a group of people living with HIV that was inspired by the series actually visited them and went to the location shoots.
“Relevant siya, kasi kaya nga ginawa yung Mga Batang Poz kasi sobrang bilis ng pagtaas ng kaso ng HIV. Number one ang Philippines sa bilis ng pagtaas ng kaso ng HIV,” he points out.
After the success of Ang Mga Batang Poz, he recently appeared on Maalaala Mo Kaya as Xian Lim’s brother and will appear again on Wansapanataym.
Fino postponed his studies to be where he is right now. He is supposedly a third-year Mechanical Engineering student at Mapua University. The original plan is to send him to Australia to work there after college.
With his angelic face and sizzling hot body which he obtains from religiously hitting the gym, StarStudio.ph cannot help but ask about his love life since no traces were found on his Instagram account.
Fino has been single for eight months now. He had three serious ex-girlfriends. He admittingly says that his last girlfriend is also in showbiz, but he just laughed it off when asked who the girl is.
Fino also shares the things he looks for in a girl: “Physically gusto ko ‘yung fit kasi mahilig ako magworkout. Kung mahilig magworkout yung girl, magkakasundo kami.” He further describes the character of his dream girl. “Siguro yung kalog, kasi ako kalog din ako. Friendly, ‘yung madaldal para makausap niya yung ate ko.”
Now that Fino is starting to get more attention in showbiz, he reveals his dreams as an actor. “Gusto ‘yung may loveteam naman na babae.” He also expresses his admiration to the actor he looks up to. “Gusto ko makawork si Jericho (Rosales) kasi in terms of acting, sobrang natural niya. Lahat ng ginagawa nya, sapul eh. Kung ano yung hinihingi ng character, nakukuha niya.”
Art Direction: Alfred Amado
Hair and Makeup: Marie Eleny Natividad (Kit and Fino); Mark Igarta (Marco)
Stylist: David Milan (Marco)
Photographer's Assistant: Jobo Nacpil