Renz Fernandez: From philosophy to acting

 THE SON RISES. 'I find acting to be such a learning experience,' said Renz. Photo courtesy of B. Allie Tah

MANILA, Philippines - Renz Fernandez, the youngest son of Grand Slam Queen Lorna Tolentino and the late action and drama star Rudy Fernandez, is pleased with his leading-man role in the GMA-7 prime-time teleserye, "Prinsesa ng Buhay Ko."

Renz plays Luis Grande, a rich young man who falls for a simple salesgirl ironically named Princess (played by Kris Bernal), not knowing that his half-brother Nick (Aljur Abrenica) also has eyes for her.

In a way, this serye is a bold take on the love-team formula, given the wide following enjoyed by the "AlKris" pair of Aljur and Kris. And now we have an equally charming actor thrown in this "equation" as a rival suitor - one who is close, at that, with Aljur's character.

How will all this play out, and - more crucial in terms of sustaining viewership - how will this impress the "AlKris" audience? 

As they say in showbiz, "Abangan!"

Renz takes pride in this project.

“Though my first teleserye was 'The Little Champ' over at ABS-CBN, I’m given this major character in 'Prinsesa ng Buhay Ko,'" he told a contributor for Rappler.

“I enjoy working with both Kris and Aljur. We attended an acting workshop together and we became very close.

“Kaya when we started taping, we weren’t awkward with one another. We all had good vibes doing our scenes.”

Tips from LT

Renz did not hesitate to take some acting tips from his mom, Lorna T.

“Kanino pa ako hihingi ng advice, ‘di ba? Eh di doon na sa [Who else would I seek advice from, if not from] the best,” he smiled.

“My mom always tells me to know my character well. I should live and breath like my character habang ginagawa ko ito [while I'm into it] for the next 3 months.

“Inalam ko ‘yung mga dapat na isuot ni Luis. [I tried to figure out how Luis would dress up.] Then, the way he talks and walks. Ano ba ang mannerisms na gagawin ko [What should be my mannerisms] to make my character unique?

“The workshop they gave us helped me a lot to build my confidence and get into my role quickly.

“But, most importantly, I do not forget to pray. I let God guide me through my work and pray for my day to be productive.”

Philosophy, acting

Renz graduated from UP Diliman with a degree in philosophy. He had thought of moving on to a master’s degree but the acting bug bit him.

“Like what they said, kung anak ka ng artista, artista din ang kakabagsakan mo. [If you're a child of actors, you'll also likely become an actor.] It’s in my blood and I’m proud that my parents are Rudy Fernandez and Lorna Tolentino.

“I find acting to be such a learning experience. You learn from the mistakes you make. Para sa next take, alam mo na ang tama [So that in the next take, you know what's right].

“I cannot blame my parents for loving this job. It’s a different world. It might be full of intrigues but that’s showbiz - you either love it or hate loving it!” Renz laughed.


Renz has already had his bit of showbiz controversy, on the heels of his breakup with Maxene Magalona early in 2013.

“What happened between me and Max was not what we wanted. Sino ba naman ang gustong maghiwalay, ‘di ba? [Who wants a breakup?]

"It’s just that we later found out we weren’t that compatible. Marami pala kaming hindi napagkakasunduan [There were many things we didn't agree on.]

"So it’s better to end it habang okey pa kami [while we were still okay]. We’re still friends naman and if ever I see her, hindi ako mahihiyang batiin siya [I wouldn't hesitate to greet her].”

Aside from acting, Renz is also a health buff. He tries out different sports such as boxing, Muay Thai, cross-fit training, swimming, and running.

“We all have to keep fit. Especially in this business, kailangan maayos ang hitsura mo parati [you have to stay in form].

"I learned that from my dad who is always in his best form. Gano’n din kay [Same with] mommy who always looks good kahit na nasa loob lang siya ng bahay [even if she's just staying home].” - 


'Prinsesa ng Buhay Ko' also stars Carmi Martin, Emilio Garcia, LJ Reyes, Maritoni Fernandez, Ping Medina, Marco Alcaraz, Lian Paz, Jan Manual, Vincent Magbanua, and Debraliz Valasote. The GMA serye premieres on September 23.