By: Nestor Cuartero
JUST A THOUGHT: “Courage is grace under pressure.” – Ernest Hemingway
NOT ALL GLAMOUR FOR ATOM: Beyond the celebrity that greets Atom Araullo’s re-entry to GMA, the veteran broadcaster says there’s a lot of hard work to be done.
It’s not all glamour or fame, he was quick to point out during a recent interview.
For his first undertaking under GMA News and Public Affairs, Atom travelled tirelessly the Philippine islands for 10 days straight, covering Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. The travels are in line with his maiden documentary, “Philippine Seas,” scheduled to air in the afternoon of Nov. 5.
He describes the journey as “life changing.”
FOCUS ON OUR MARINE GEMS: “Philippine Seas” is a one-hour TV special that uncovers the wonders and threats surrounding the Philippines’ marine gems.
In Moalboal, Cebu’s world-famous dive site, Atom witnessed hundreds of thousands of sardines gather in a single ball in a moment that he can only describe as “majestic”. In nearby Bais, Negros Oriental, he spoke of dolphins being slaughtered.
Atom encountered a group of “bow-riders”, dolphins that ride alongside passenger boats.
But, it isn’t all lightness and fun.
Off the coast of Sarangani, Atom met with tuna fishermen who wait days for a single catch.
He also discovers a group of Filipino fishermen detained in Indonesia for fishing in foreign waters.
DOOR TO ACTING: The past few months, Atom has been magnet to media due to a film that he has accepted.
Playing the title role in Citizen Jake, said to be a socio-political commentary on contemporary Philippine life, Atom has naturally become the center of public interest. With his good looks and sheer talent, people had long expected him to act in movies. So, they wondered, what is he doing in news and public affairs?
Atom cleared his focus remains the latter, and not entertainment. He was attracted to the Citizen Jake project because filmmaker Mike de Leon is behind it.
Other than that, he thinks he will stick to documentary filmmaking. His 2-year contract with GMA specifies it, though who can tell what exigencies may hold in the coming seasons?
HESITANT ABOUT ACTING: I asked Atom if he could see himself in a teleserye or another movie. He was noncommittal.
Atom worked for ten years as a journalist in ABS-CBN.
Now 35 years old, he started as a youth anchor of TV show, “5 and Up,” with Rayver Cruz, Chynna Ortaleza, and Maxene Magalona. All three of his former co-hosts have grown up to become full-time actors.
Catch “Philippine Seas” on Nov. 5, 3:30 p.m. on GMA 7.