When news of Iza Calzado playing Darna broke out, the Internet went abuzz. Afterall, it's been almost two decades since she almost played the titular role. In a recent interview with Boy Abunda on YouTube, the actress looks back at her 22-year-old self, on the cusp of being Darna, and everything she did to prepare for it.
Iza brings us back to 2004 and recalls, "It’s been 18 years since I was first approached, sat down, and told, ‘We want you to play Darna’—without it being a dream role of mine growing up [because Darna is] picture-perfect,” she said. “Beyond Barbie pa ito kasi naka-two-piece, perfect ka dapat.”
With her happiness and excitement, she had an impulsive choice to get surgeries to fit the role. “So I did two surgeries to, kind of, fix the body and it wasn’t enough.” She goes on ot admit, "Because I had lost a hundred pounds—so loose skin and everything—I had a tummy tuck and thigh lift. It was one after the other.”
Although it was only after her surgeries that she realized she wanted to withdraw from the role. "At that time siyempre masakit kasi literal na masakit yung surgeries na ‘wow’ I even had to audition for it again knowing that I was in full leotards like wearing a bodysuit. Really. Parang I don’t want to do this. I am so over it,” she explained.
But doors didn't fully close on Iza. Right after, she landed the role of Amihan in the iconic TV show, Encantadia that helped her let go of being Darna. However, it wasn't as easy as it sounds. “The feeling of I did the surgeries for a role. The regret and why was I so impulsive to do this for a project na hindi naman natuloy? I had to deal with that. I had to grapple with that for years,” said the actress. Iza then embarked on a body and self love journey to fully embrace that past.
Now, in 2022, Iza closes her Darna chapter with Mars Ravelo's Darna TV series. She plays Leonor, a.k.a. the first Darna and she will be passing on the magic stone to her daughter Narda (Jane De Leon). And no, this time around, Iza doesn't have "to fix" anything about her body. She's not going to wear Darna's skimpy two-piece costume, either.
This story originally appeared on Preview.ph.
* Minor edits have been made by the Female Network editors.