Broadcast giant ABS-CBN announced that Jane de Leon has been chosen to play the iconic role of the local comic book heroine “Darna” following Liza Soberano’s withdrawal but, who is she?
“Darna” director Jerrold Tarog described her as an “instinctive actress” who bested almost 300 local celebrities who auditioned for the much-coveted role.
The announcement was confirmed by ABS-CBN Films managing director Olivia Lamasan, who said it was a “unanimous” decision of the management.
“Pinresent na si Jane sa amin a couple of years ago, and among all the 13 noon na Mr. M (Johnny Manahan) presented from Star Magic, natatandaan ng isang talent handler na ‘Inang, napansin mo na siya noon, itong batang ito pwedeng sumali ng beauty pageants,'” she shared.
“And then I saw her again in ‘Halik.’ Sabi ko, ‘Itong batang to, meron.’ There’s something about her,” Lamasan, a renowned television and film director, said.
She added that De Leon fits their vision for the heroine in its latest film adaptation packaged as a coming-of-age story.
“‘Yung Darna story natin ngayon is a genesis story, a coming of age. Ang requirement talaga is somebody na young and with an air of innocence but at the same time, a strength of character,” Lamasan shared.
De Leon was “absolutely shocked” when she found out that she was chosen to portray the heroine.
Liza Soberano, who was originally chosen to play the part, bowed out of the project after obtaining a finger bone fracture that required her to undergo therapies and surgeries.
Who is Jane de Leon?
Jane de Leon is a 20-year-old talent of Star Magic who has previously appeared in a number of television series and films, although “Darna” is considered her breakthrough project.
Her latest appearance on television is playing the role of Jericho Rosales‘ younger sister Maggie in the teleserye “Halik.”
De Leon also appeared in “La Luna Sangre,” “Pantalan,” “Wansapanataym: Tikboyong,” “The Debutantes,” “Walwal,” “Magpahanggang Wakas,” “Ipaglaban Mo’s” March 23 episode and in three episodes of “Maalaala Mo Kaya.”
The actress is also a member of Girltrends, an all-female dance group of “It’s Showtime.”
De Leon hails from Laguna but stays in Quezon City where she can easily attend her showbiz commitments.
According to her artist profile on Star Magic’s website, she is skilled in acting, singing, dancing, modeling and playing the drums and guitar.
The actress also considers herself a vlogger and has a YouTube channel with more than 12,000 subscribers.
De Leon is friends with two ABS-CBN darlings, Elisse Joson and Sofia Andres, based on her social media posts.
She also identifies herself as an animal lover and has a scar on her left cheek from a cat to prove it.
But pink is not a color De Leon would opt to wear, even as she owns some pink-colored things.
She likes to cut her hair on her own as well—to the point that her mother would scold her for it.
The actress may have some of Darna’s courage after all, as she revealed that she does not get easily scared watching horror movies.