Richard Juan Shares Inspiration for this NYLON Manila Exclusive

Richard Juan Shares How Inspiration Can Take You to the Next Level

Authenticity and multiplicity are key.

Winner of NYLON Manila’s Big Bold Brave “Inspiring Personality” Award, Richard Juan, gives us an inside look into how inspiring narratives are found and created.  

Related: Here are the BRAVE Winners for NYLON Manila’s Big Bold Brave Awards: Next Level

Richard Juan is no stranger to the spotlight. His introduction to local media began with a segment on Eat Bulaga! and then a season on Pinoy Big Brother. After landing multiple acting, modeling, and hosting spots on some of the biggest local channels, like ABS-CBN, TV5, and GMA, it might have been hard to imagine how his career could have gotten any bigger. 

Juan, however, continues to break down barriers with his newer ventures. In 2021, he showed us that creatives can be business-savvy, too, with the creation of his own production company 28 Squared Studios. With it, his team has been able to take storytelling and content creation to the next level. By championing multicultural narratives from all across Asia, Richard Juan and company have paved the way forward for local filmmakers and content creators to kick down the doors to the global stage. A most recent example is his work on the film “Under Parallel Skies” – a cross-border project that stars Janella Salvador and Win Metawin.

It’s no wonder then that Richard Juan won NYLON Manila’s 2024 Big Bold Brave “Inspiring Personality” Award. By showing us that the path to success is winding and unexpected, creatives from all around find a source of inspiration. So we sat down with Juan to take a look at where inspiration really comes from and how we can harness its power to create fearlessly.

As NYLON Manila’s “Inspiring Personality” of the year, why do you think your projects resonate with so many people?

Thank you so much for this incredible honour! I believe my projects resonate with people because they are rooted in authenticity and relatability. I strive to tell stories that reflect the human experience, tapping into emotions and experiences that many can relate to. Whether it’s a film, a social media post, or a public speaking engagement, I aim to connect with my audience on a personal level. The multicultural and multifaceted aspects of my background also allow me to bring diverse perspectives to my work, which I think resonates with a wide range of people.

When you struggle to move forward with a project, who/what/where do you look to for inspiration?

When I hit a roadblock, I often look back at my own journey and the challenges I’ve overcome. I remind myself of the reasons why I started in this industry and the passion that drives me. Additionally, I find inspiration in the stories of others – people who have made significant impacts in their fields despite the odds. Traveling and immersing myself in different cultures also rejuvenates my creative spirit. Sometimes, just stepping out of my usual environment and experiencing something new can spark fresh ideas and perspectives.

What do you think inspires Gen Z the most in their day-to-day life?

Richard Juan IG Post


Gen Z is incredibly inspired by authenticity and purpose. They seek out genuine experiences and are driven by a desire to make a positive impact on the world. Social media has given them a platform to voice their opinions and connect with like-minded individuals globally, which fuels their drive for change. They are also inspired by stories of resilience and innovation – seeing individuals and communities overcome challenges and create something meaningful resonates deeply with them.

When it comes to your craft, how have you been taking things to the next level?

Taking things to the next level for me means constantly pushing boundaries and exploring new territories. With Under Parallel Skies, we are not just telling a story but bridging cultures and showcasing the beauty of diverse perspectives. Embracing everything that life throws at me has also been a key element in making me who I am today and how I am able to constantly take things to the next level. Additionally, I focus on continuous learning and collaboration with talented individuals from various fields — not just entertainment — which brings fresh ideas and innovation to my main field. 

What direction would you like to see Filipino film and television take in the next few years?

I envision Filipino film and television embracing more diverse and global narratives while staying true to our rich cultural heritage. There’s so much untapped potential in the stories we can tell – stories that can resonate both locally and internationally. I’d love to see more cross-cultural collaborations and films that highlight unique aspects of Asian life while connecting with universal themes. Increasing the representation of Filipino and Asian talents on the global stage is something I’m very passionate about, which is why I embarked on such a big collaboration for my very first film project.

We see this trend gaining momentum globally with shows like Past Lives and Emily in Paris in Hollywood, but it’s not as prominent in Asia yet. Under Parallel Skies aims to be one of the early pioneers in this space. I’m grateful to see that major studios like Warner Bros. believe in this vision as well, which has led to our film becoming the first Filipino romance film under their banner.

What advice do you have for young people who want to enter the film industry?

My advice to young aspiring filmmakers is to make sure this is something you are truly passionate about. The film industry is not all easy and glamorous; it involves long hours, sleepless nights, and a lot of hard work. It’s crucial to stay true to your vision and be relentless in your pursuit of it. Understand that the journey can be challenging, and hard work alone doesn’t always guarantee rewards — there’s an element of luck involved as well.

Under Parallel Skies International Release Dates


Surround yourself with a supportive and diverse team who shares your passion and vision. Collaboration is key in this industry, and having the right people by your side can make all the difference. Embrace the challenges, learn from them, and keep pushing forward. With dedication, resilience, and a bit of luck, the rewards can be incredibly fulfilling.

(This interview has been edited for length and clarity.)

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