Dennis Padilla thinks Julia Barretto, Joshua Garcia already a couple

Precious del Valle
The comedian says he likes his daughter's rumored boyfriend

FATHER'S APPROVAL. Dennis Padilla says he likes Joshua Garcia for his daughter Julia Barretto and even thinks they're together already. All photos by Precious del Valle/Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – Call it a hunch or perhaps father’s intuition but Dennis Padilla thinks that daughter Julia Barretto and Joshua Garcia are already in a relationship.

During the press conference for his directorial debut The Barker on Friday, October 6, Dennis said Joshua and Julia seem to be more than just an onscreen love team, judging by their sweet posts online.

“Palagay ko syota na ni Julia ‘yun eh, sa mga galaw ha. Kasi may mga pictures sa Instagram, minsan magkahawak ‘yung kamay, nakayakap. Saka ‘pag hindi naman kayo mag-boyfriend, ‘di ka naman papayag na magkahawak kayo ng kamay all the way, magkayakap, nagbubulungan, ‘di ba? So siguro mag-boyfriend na ‘yun. ‘Di lang umaamin. Pero bagay naman kayo, kaya puwede na kayong umamin,” he said.

(I think he’s Julia’s boyfriend, based on their body language. In their Instagram pictures, sometimes they’re holding hands, hugging. And if you’re not in a relationship, you wouldn’t allow someone to hold your hand all the way, you wouldn’t be hugging and whispering to each other, right? I guess they’re a couple already. They just won’t admit it. But they look together, so I think they can admit they’re in a relationship.)

Dennis first met Joshua during a Father’s Day dinner back in June. The actor-turned-director said he immediately took a liking to the The Good Son actor the moment they met.

“Sabi ko, ‘Okay ka. Bago pa kita nakilala bini-BI [background investigation] na kita.’ Inalam ko pamilya [niya], mabait na bata, magalang, and I’m sure magiging mabait siyang partner ni Julia,” Dennis said.

(I told him, “You’re okay. Even before I met you, I was already conducting a BI [background investigation] on you.” I checked his family’s background, he’s a nice boy, polite, and I’m sure he’s a suitable partner for Julia.)

“Sabi ko lang kay Joshua, ang mahalaga lang naman mamahalin mo ‘yung anak ko eh. ‘Wag mo lang sasaktan, ‘wag mo lang lolokohin. Ako naman komedyante lang ako pero pagka sinaktan mo ‘yan, niloko mo ‘yan, magiging action star ako,” he added.

(I just told Joshua, what’s important is that you’ll love my daughter. Don’t hurt her, don’t even think of fooling her. I am a comedian but if you ever hurt my daughter, I’ll turn into an action star.)

Joshua is the first guy that Julia has introduced to him, and for Dennis, that says a lot about their relationship.

“Siguro kung ilan man ang nanliligaw kay Julia para ipakilala mo sa tatay mo itong lalaki na ito, ‘yun may tsansang maging boyfriend mo… May natsismis dati pero ‘di naman napakilala sa ‘kin.  So sabi ko makakalamang na ‘yung pinapakilala sa magulang,” he said.

(Out of all the guys who have probably courted Julia, for her to introduce this boy to me, he’s probably the one who’ll become her boyfriend… There was a boy linked to her in the past but I never met him. Whoever she introduces to us, her parents, has an advantage.)

Although Dennis can’t help but be protective of Julia, he said he has complete trust in her and he is proud of what she has already accomplished in her career. Even though they had a rocky relationship at the beginning, Dennis said they’re just happy to move on and put aside any differences they might have had.

Dennis with Empoy and Shy Carlos.

“Okay na kami saka ‘di na namin pinag-uusapan ‘yung mga dating nangyari. It’s time to move on. Let’s move forward. Kaya I’m happy na we’re in constant communication na ngayon and happy ako sa success na meron siya ngayon.”

(We’re okay, we no longer talk about what happened in the past. It’s time to move on. Let’s move forward. I’m happy that we’re in constant communication now and happy with her success.)

Given the chance, Dennis also mentioned that he would like to direct another comedy movie, this time with JoshLia as the lead. He added that he already found a script that would fit the two perfectly.

“Comedy siya mula umpisa hanggang dulo pero ‘yung ending, sobrang malungkot. Bagay sa kanila,” he said. (The movie’s a comedy but the ending is quite sad. It will suit them.)

The Barker, starring Empoy Marquez and Shy Carlos, premieres October 21. –