Clockwise from L-R: Dingdong Dantes, Piolo Pascual, Aljur Abrenica, Baron Geisler, Tado Jimenez—as Jesus. (Note: This article was originally published at 10 a.m. on April 20, 2011.)
Religion aside, there’s no doubt that Jesus Christ has become one of the most recognized figures in pop culture. His life—which remains the subject of heated debates—has been dramatized numerous times in the movies and on television. But, while many foreign actors have made their mark playing the Son of God, very few Pinoys have played him.Heck, we can only remember Matt Ranillo in Kristo (1996) and Love Thadani in the ABS-CBN soap May Bukas Pa. (We’re not counting the actors who played Jesus in stage plays, though.)
That being said, this year, we figured we’d come up with a list of Pinoy actors who could play Jesus (remember last year's 10 Actors Who Played the Son of God?). Mind you, we’re not religious experts or anything. We just thought that the Lamb of God deserved more Pinoy representation.
Piolo Pascual in Don't Give Up on Us
If Mel Gibson could cast a beautiful Jesus in The Passion of the Christ, then surely we can cast the easy-on-the-eyes Piolo Pascual. He’s got the dramatic depth and the physique for the role. We can see him with long hair and sandals. However, we’re not sure if the audience will take him seriously when he preaches. He’s just so good-looking that it’s distracting.
Jay Manalo in Florinda
He may be one of the country’s most talented actors—but no matter what Jay Manalo does, he just can’t seem to shake off the Totoy Mola (1997) tag. Playing Jesus may help him lose the Mola moniker. He just has to lose that “bastos look” in his eyes so he can play the Savior effectively. Otherwise, people might say, “Holy, Mola!”