Slowly easing into several new roles, Maja Salvador shows us how women can go beyond conventions and still rule.
This is an excerpt from MEGA magazine’s August 2022 cover story.
For someone who has a steady career, it takes strength to go beyond what’s safe and expected. Maja made her acting debut at 14 years old, playing a minor role in the drama series It Might Be You (2003- 2004), starring John Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo. It aired in her then home network ABS-CBN. Soon, she became involved in notable projects, including the cult classic film One More Chance (2007), and the inspiring movie Thelma (2011), which won her best actress awards.
Now, at 34, Maja’s world seems similar, but on a different plane. She isn’t only required to play roles in front of the camera, but she has a bigger role to play behind it. Also, now, her former co-star John Lloyd is under Crown’s wing, together with other famous names, Jasmine Curtis Smith, Miles Ocampo (also a former ABS-CBN talent), to name few.
Maja, however, insists that she’s “not leaving” anything behind, even comfort zones. “Maybe adding [to her responsibilities],” she says is the better word to use.
“Halo-halo kasi ’yan, e,” she tells us of her recent decisions. “Isang araw, nagising ka na na-shut-down na ’yong home network mo, tapos na ’yong contract mo with the network na talagang nag-alaga sa ’yo, nagbigay sa ’yo ng opportunities. So, what’s your next plan?”
For her fiancé’s family, putting up a talent agency seemed natural. They have been involved in several events and public relations ventures for decades, while Rambo had put up the Pop Up Digital marketing company years ago.
For Maja, getting into this fairly new realm feels right: she has always looked out for the well being of others. “I’m not naman pakialamera, but I’ve always been concerned about how my castmates or close friends in the industry are doing, how they look, kahit sa mga eksena nila,” she admits.
One member of her glam team, Denise, tell us that while Maja may not have fully embraced her new role, everyone around her sees how she fits perfectly in it. “One time, we were in a shoot,” Denise recalls. “She was the cover star. The whole time I was doing her makeup, she was in a Zoom meeting, kasi may hina-handle siya na very delicate issue. She was talking to executives.”
Remembering that moment, Maja turns to us, nodding her head: “Oo nga, no? Like ngayon, hindi puwedeng dito lang ako kasi artista ako. I have to be updated sa mga nangyayari sa Crown.”
There’s a powerful feeling of accomplishment, she says, for a woman such as her, who used to be a simple dreamer, to be able to make decisions that could affect an entire group of people. She ponders for a moment, before saying, “Siguro ang maganda kasi sa nangyayari sa atin ngayon, very open na: ang kababaihan tanggap na ng lahat na nagtatrabaho, and the voices of women are being heard. I’m very happy na napunta ako sa ganitong generation.”
She adds, relating to her lifelong job, “Ang layo na ng narating natin. Kahit sa mga teleserye na nagawa ko, laging nananalo ang kababaihan. Why? Sa mga babae nanggagaling ang love, ang balance. ’Pag nagsalita na ’yong babae, hindi puwedeng hindi mo pakinggan because sila ’yong nagbabalanse sa magulong mundo ng mga tao.”
See more photos of Maja Salvador in creations by National Artist Salvacion Lim Higgins, and read more about her career and wedding plans in MEGA’s August 2022 issue, now available on Readly, Magzter, Press Reader and Zinio
All jewelry by BVLGARI
Photography SEVEN BARRETTO
Creative direction MARC YELLOW
Fashion direction and Styling RYUJI SHIOMITSU assisted by ALDRIN RAMOS and GEE JOCSON
Beauty direction MIA CASTRO
Makeup DENISE GO OCHOA
Hair JAY WEE
Nails EXTRAORDINAIL & PAINT N’ STYLE
Videography KIERAN PUNAY
Shoot coordination KZ FRANCISCO & MJ ALMERO
Shot on location LAS CASAS QUEZON CITY
Special thanks to SLIM’S FASHION AND ARTS SCHOOL DIRECTOR MARK HIGGINS, CLEMENTINA RABE and LUCILA PACANZA of SLIM’S ARCHIVE, assisted by HANNAH ADRIAS and GLYNN ALLEY MAGTIBAY, JANE ANDRES OF LAS CASAS QUEZON CITY and VERONICA of EXTRAORDINAIL