Filipino actors

Jake Ejercito, Donny Pangilinan get biggest breaks in ‘Sunday Noontime Live’

Alexa Villano
Jake Ejercito, Donny Pangilinan get biggest breaks in ‘Sunday Noontime Live’
Jake and Donny join Piolo Pascual, Maja Salvador, and Catriona Gray as hosts under the direction of Johnny Manahan

Sunday Noontime Live, the new musical variety show from Brightlight Productions premiere Sunday, October 18 with stars from ABS-CBN leading the show.

Piolo Pascual, Maja Salvador, and Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray spearhead the show under the direction of Johnny Manahan, who also used to direct ASAP. Manahan or Mr. M, as he is called in showbiz circles, was also one of the co-founders of Star Magic, ABS-CBN’s talent center.

Joining the 3 hosts are Jake Ejercito and Donny Pangilinan. The two are no strangers to the audience, thanks to their showbiz families and appearances on television.

Donny Pangilinan: Building his own brand of hosting

Donny, who has been in showbiz for 4 years, said he was aware that he would be compared to his parents, host Anthony Pangilinan and actress Maricel Laxa.

“I think this is a new platform for me to showcase and learn and become better in my hosting skills,” Donny said during the press conference for Brightlight Productions’ shows Monday, October 12.

“I’m very blessed that I get to be with this amazing cast, this amazing group, crew, and I’m just open to learn from those who have come before me.”

Donny Pangilinan

“So right now, I’m just focusing to build my own brand, build my own name. And yes, of course, comparisons will come. Hindi mamawala yan. But it’s good pressure as well, para ma motivate ako to become better,” he said.

(Comparisons will come, that will not disappear. But it’s good pressure, as well, so I’ll be motivated to become better.)

Before SNL, Donny appeared as a VJ for Myx channel and hosted segments of ASAP. He also appeared in movies such as Walwal and Fantastica.

Jake Ejercito:  Embracing the spotlight

Jake, became a familiar face when he appeared in Eat Bulaga’s “Kalyeserye” segment.  The son of former president and Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada and Laarni Enriquez, Jake tried to avoid the spotlight and do other things.

But last June, he finally decided to go full blast in showbiz by signing a contract with Star Magic.

Jake Ejercito

Asked what made him finally say yes to showbiz, Jake said: “Admittedly it’s been a long road that’s led me here.”  

“As a kid like anyone you know, I always wanted to be like my dad, stuff like that. And I’ve always been reluctant and I was based abroad and when I was doing stuff before, the timing was never really right. “

“And now I’m back here, back home, I think everything is in place. I found the right balance with everything that’s going on. And yeah, that’s how I found myself here now,” he said.

He also said that as the “newbie” in the group, he would be doing things he never thought he’d be able to do. He added to just watch out what he and Donny will be doing on the show.

Jake admitted he was surprised when he was offered SNL. But he said the audience could expect a lot of things from the show.

“To be working with bright and talented artists, talagang it’s a thrill for me. There’s so much to expect. As they said, it’s going to be youth-oriented, with lots of surprises and amazing production numbers.” –

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Alexa Villano

Alexa is one of Rappler's Lifestyle and Entertainment reporters, covering local entertainment news to a wide range of topics from beauty pageants to reality shows.